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Enjoy diverse perspectives from West Michigan women.

We live in a world full of messaging. It is impossible to escape it—unless of course, you live as a hermit without electronics or human contact. Marketing and advertising professionals know what sells. In addition to the inundation of marketing messages, we receive untold messages from society and our ever-changing culture. The messages are often confusing and, more often than not, conflicting.

"Trevor at school wants Hillary Clinton to win," announced Reed, my 11-year-old son. He shouted from the kitchen,"I told him she's a LIAR!"

We recently returned from our long-awaited spring break. Several months of planning and build-up went into this year's trip—which was all that I could hope for. We had great weather, we had quality family time, and we created memories that lasted a lifetime.

When I look back on my time at summer camp, I recall very specific experiences—learning to fold and care for the American flag; hitting my first full canter astride a horse; learning sign language; pouring lye down the outhouse privy; synchronized swimming in the pond; singing silly songs around a campfire; peaceful devotions under a pine tree canopy; and maybe even a few preteen crushes.

Whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, networking is a necessary evil—unless, of course, you work in a cave and are required to stay in said cave and never leave. Most of us in the professional world need to attend lunches, evening soirees and breakfast events to grow our network and to build mutually beneficial relationships; this is also referred to as business development. It isn't that hard, right? You just show up, have a couple of drinks, make conversation, and BOOM!—a great relationship is born. Wouldn't it be great if it were really that easy?

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