The day I left the “presidency”

I already offered my conversation with Jose Luis in the official post:This one was for you!

But I want to write something else on my own blog, this time speaking for you: person who approaches this sector of the WordPress community and doesn’t quite know what to expect from a WordCamp. That he does not know whether to join an organizing group.

So it will be a rare PonteWordCamp review, but appealing to transparency and courage, so that you take the step to change your reality.

The Day I Got Scared: Challenges and Complexity

I have already talked in different posts(many) about how it changed me to be part of this great family. How to find your tribe can become one of the biggest catalysts for your personal and professional life.

The role of leadership seems straightforward in a group as cohesive and collaborative as Pontevedra. And it’s true, but to be honest, I don’t always feel that way. And I don’t think it’s good for us to hide it. I believe that saying things with transparency brings more honesty to the process.

Simple is not for me, I worry too much. I saw that we were under budget and we had to cut some ideas (Galician music group, volunteer dinner with special things, etc).

That this obsessive mind kept me awake some nights because I was afraid that something would go wrong.

It’s all a matter of attitude, security and confidence. I lost it on many occasions.

When I take on a responsibility I do so with a very high level of commitment; this can become a limitation. I am not as controlling as I appear to be, I love to delegate and clear my mind, that’s why I am good at messing with more people in my environment.

I tend to advocate doing things, even if they don’t turn out perfectly (proof of this is my videos on YouTube). But in the case of WC the responsibility for such a large group of people is something that weighs heavily.

When it’s over, you feel delighted, you say: How could I have been worried if it went great! But I wanted to state this post with sincerity to make something clear:

It is not easy. If you want to do things right you will worry, obsess and lose your temper. Even in a group as incredible as ours.

Reconciling work, family, free time and WordPress is a very difficult balance to achieve.

And this may “burn” some organizers. That is why it is good to talk about it out loud. So that we know how to apply control measures and help each other.

And when WordCamp is over, is it all over?

Under no circumstances, you have to write a post (in my case, I have to write a double post because I get very confused, official and personal web).

Taking care of communication, closing accounts, reporting everything, my house is a mess of sponsor material that has to go back to its destinations.

My mailbox is a pile of endless unresolved lists of clients that I had to put on hold during the time I was dedicated to the event.

If everything is so complicated, what the hell are you getting into this for?

Fair question.

It’s worth every fucking second. It’s as simple as that.

I don’t think life is about making things easy for us. I believe that putting us under pressure is the total purge, the way to learn. To polish our inner diamond, which is none other than true consciousness.

We all live in an imaginary world, where reality is not objective. It is a product of our vision of the world, of our ego. Our mind is always scattered. The famous “Chitchat” as Ethan Kross‘ book.

One of the major foundations of Stoicism is:

“You become what you pay attention to.”


Think about it.

We live between the past and the future because of our mind and its concerns. But none exist. There is only now.

Everything that exists is being generated at this very moment. I’m sitting here writing a reflection and my mind is even scattered, going off on a ramble. What will they think of me? What went wrong? The mind of the monkey as Buddhism says.

Does it really matter? Or is it our ego that feels threatened by the idea of being judged, of being attacked. Of feeling vulnerable.

Vulnerability, fear. That is why we do not expose ourselves. Therefore, we must do it.

We feel insecure about our decisions.

We have fears and that manifests itself in our choices. We all have an inner journey. A spiritual journey. Maybe you are not aware of it, but we all have a path, an evolution.

You are not the same as you were 1, 2 or 5 years ago. Your mind and character will be consolidated according to the experiences you have.

When Juan Hernando handed over the helm of WordCamp to me in 2019, I was scared. That means it was a good path. He trusted me and I will be eternally grateful to him.

If I had remained calm, I would not have exposed myself, I would not have improved as a person. Why do I think I have improved?

The day I evolved

I have been freelancing alone for more than 8 years. I hadn’t had the opportunity to work in a team in a long time. This opportunity has allowed me to understand the complexities of relationships.

To be able to communicate assertively. To understand that everyone has their differences. That everyone in such a group is a volunteer organizer. That means we must be empathetic, try to support each other in our lowest moments, even when we don’t agree on everything.

I am currently working with Camilo Alvarez thanks to the WordPress community. The same community that has allowed me to learn to collaborate, to organize, to lead.

Organizing group WordCamp Pontevedra 2018
2018 Organizing Group choosing papers

Our group is wonderful, Juan’s original group: María Sáez, Jorge González, Carlos Sobrino, Paula Rivera, Lúa Louro, Fernando Portomeñe and Julio de la Iglesia and of course Jose Luis.

In my first year (2022) I incorporated Sabela Muñiz, Ana Gavilán, David Viña, Mónica Saavedra and Sonia Díaz.

In 2023, some of them had to leave the ship, but Carlos Longarela and Jesús Amieiro joined the company. Not officially but almost, lie to Yolanda Pazos.

Each of them brings an incredible personality to WordCamp. It is a perfect mix of creativity, enthusiasm, madness, energy and illusion.

We are a group of friends looking to get together once a month.

That the talks are an excuse to get out of our laptops, to socialize. To talk interesting things with people who share your interests. No more, no less.

There is no greater secret than that: having friends. Juan always says so:

— “I founded the group because I moved to Pontevedra and I wanted to have friends”.

Is there anything more valuable than human connections?

It is in sharing that you find true fulfillment. Take the test. I always liked the phrase:

“The miracle is this – the more we share, the more we have.”

Leonard Nimoy

Today this community gives me the fulfillment and friendships I need to develop personally and professionally. In addition to sightseeing, and laughing until I cry (yet another bonus 😉 )

By doing things, things are generated. There is no more mystery than this.

Sometimes in our industry we tend to look too much at the “marketing strategy”. Forget that shit, act on your feelings. I’ve learned to let myself get more carried away with that and it hasn’t gone so badly.

This 2023 has been one of my best years. Only a goodbye clouded it. And after having made a presentation of WC dancing Gloria Gaynor, this year it was my turn to make a heartfelt tribute that broke me on more than one occasion.

All this gives you “boards”, character. It helps you evolve with people who respect you and will take care of you, even if you make mistakes and don’t do it perfectly. No one asks you to. You impose it on yourself.

The day people came

Does it make sense to make all this effort?

Every fucking second is worth it.

That 254 tickets were sold this year, with a high level of participation, many attendees, many volunteers, other speakers.

Many of these speakers send many proposals because they are excited about it, they want to be part of this day. They want to share their knowledge, they want to be part of this party. Hats off. I do not mention each one of you, but I say it to all of you: Thank you! ❤️

Volunteers, speakers, who come from far and wide. Spending a lot of money, just to be able to be here. Double merit.

Sponsors who believe in what we do and give their money (or services) without asking for anything in return, other than visibility in our event. To be able to connect with the people who attend and be a part of it.

Many curious people who do not know what we do and come for the first time. Students, teachers, companies.

A public university that leaves its main objective at the top: to educate. Who leave us their keys without even asking. They trust us.

He knows that what we do will bring benefits to his students, to society.

Like the university where I studied, which had a slogan: “The house that overcomes the shadow”. The School of Communication also overcomes this shadow with student volunteers and assistants, learning.

It will never cease to amaze me. There you realize the impact of what we do and you say: Of course I have to keep doing it!

I am changing my reality and environment a little bit. Is it not a noble aspiration as human beings?

Thanks to all the people who are part of this madness and who give meaning to what we do.

The day I become an ex-president

Just as Juan had done with me, it was my turn to take over. Something healthy and necessary.

How proud to leave it to Sabela. A person who I know will do great. Committed to what we do, with a lot of creativity and enthusiasm.

I will be able to focus on other aspects of the community that I have neglected, such as WordPress TV. If you accept me, in the WCEU team, next edition Torino.

And of course, the whole team will continue to support him in unison so that this evolution continues.

What is this reflection worth?

It serves as a purge, a review of my favorite WordCamp. But I would like you to read beyond the surface.

Think. What are you afraid of? What are you procrastinating? What prevents you from being part of this project?

Help your local WordPress group. We all have our ups and downs. Don’t make excuses for it!

It is tiring to have to look for speakers, think about social networks, update the page. There are so many things you can do and you don’t have to spend thousands of hours. A little bit of your time will make a difference.

A little bit of your affection and it will permeate everything the group does.

“He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the Universe.”

Marcus Aurelius

If you stop focusing so much on yourself and look beyond, you may find yourself on the path and awaken to this reality.

Long live and prosper WordPress!

Featured photo of the post by Nilo Vélez.

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