In the Blog
Beth Smith: Supporting D.I.Y. Biz on IndieNorth
Every Thursday I profile a new incredible woman, each from a different walk of life. Different professions, causes, backgrounds, ethnicities, orientations, and anything/everything else!
So without further delay, let me introduce the amazing Beth Smith…
Beth Smith is a reader, writer, wife, mother, hiker, listener, networker, maker of natural skincare products and Thing-Finder in Chief at www.indienorth.com. If she’s not “internetting until her eyes bleed,” she’s probably outside traipsing around the city of North Bay, ON and the wilderness beyond.
Determined to help others make a living doing what they love, Beth created IndieNorth to support and promote Canadian independent businesses. Beth tells us why it’s not worth waiting for a handsome prince to rescue you when you could be out slaying your own dragons and reminds us why Pippi Longstocking is such an awesome role-model!
What drives you to do what you do?
There are so many aspects of my personality wrapped up into everything I do. I have a passionate interest in people who are following their dreams and making a living from them. I love to help people discover and reach for their full potential, and I love bringing people together into a network of support. I also get a real charge out of “finding” fabulous people who make and do fascinating things.
How does being a woman empower / challenge you?
I think that as a woman, I’m much quicker to seek out new networks and form supportive alliances with others. I’ve never considered being a woman to be much of a challenge; quite the contrary. I was lucky to be raised in a fabulously supportive family, and as a result I didn’t face the typical gender stereotypes until I was old enough to see through them. I wish the same for all young girls.
What advice would you give to young women who want to follow in your footsteps?
Ooh… is this the place for a cautionary tale? Just remember, poo happens, to everyone. Crying, whining to your girlfriends or avoiding a problem isn’t going to get it solved. Get quiet, think a problem through and find solutions. Don’t wait for a handsome prince to rescue you when you could be out slaying your own dragons. It’s faster and much more satisfactory to take care of things yourself.
Name one person, place, or thing every young woman should know about?
Can I choose a fictional character here? Every young woman should read (or re-read) Pippi Longstocking, by Astrid Lindgren. Pippi is strong, assertive, lives on her own, has her own money, dresses to please herself, has fabulous adventures, is quick to admit a mistake, and quick to solve a problem. She’s also a staunchly loyal and supportive friend. I want to be like Pippi when I grow up.
What is the most important thing we can do in order to change the world?
Just do something, anything that makes life better for another living soul. Be an example of kindness. We can’t all afford to donate wads of cash, we can’t all up and leave to help in other countries, but we can all be kinder and more supportive of people around us right now. That kindness will inspire others, and the network will grow.
Make sure to stop by IndieNorth to find all kinds of awesome Canadian indie businesses, news, and weekly contests.