Michelle Keating: The Dreamer
“Every time I watched the trailer, I was just moved to tears because it felt like I was watching my own story. I just felt like if I had the opportunity to inspire someone else to follow their dreams then it would be worth it.”
While running through the woods behind her house, Michelle Keating decided do something big.
The budding entrepreneur was very familiar with feeling outside of her comfort zone but putting down money to host a screening of a film that wasn’t even released yet felt like an additional level of anxiety.
Instead of trying to control the situation and immediately dive into planning, she decided to do the opposite – she put her trust in the universe and let go.
Michelle was a Kickstarter backer and supported Dream, Girl from the very beginning. When asked why she wanted to host a screening for her community in Auckland, New Zealand, Michelle leaned back in her chair and stared off into space, visualizing herself back in 2014.
“It may sound strange but I felt like I had to,” Michelle said as a slow smile came to her face. “Every time I watched the trailer, I was just moved to tears because it felt like I was watching my own story. I just felt like if I had the opportunity to inspire someone else to follow their dreams then it would be worth it.”
In her early 20s, Michelle started a cupcake company and even became a fairy princess for-hire (if you ever meet Michelle, you’ll realize this isn’t as random as it sounds). Both ventures failed to bring in enough income and she decided to settle in a stable job.
When the Dream, Girl Kickstarter campaign launched, Michelle was working as a graphic designer and felt completely unfulfilled (she even admits to crying herself to sleep a few nights).
In short, she felt like a failure. The career purgatory she found herself in left her unhappy at work but lacking the confidence to jump back into entrepreneurship. When the negativity reached a point where she could no longer stand it, she decided to pull the pin and decided to pursue her own path once again.
“2014 was really the year where I decided I would rather die trying to figure out this business thing than wonder for the rest of my life if could I do something that’s meaningful.”
With a small nest egg and a dream to do something bigger, Michelle decided to screen Dream, Girl in hopes of instilling in herself the confidence to become a businesswoman.
Having never hosted an event like this before, Michelle says she didn’t really know what to expect from her Dream, Girl screening but knew she had a community who was hungry for this kind of content.
Through social media, she reached out to her friends and acquaintances with discount codes for tickets who she labelled as VIPs (Very Inspiring People). She encouraged her VIPs to share the event with the ladies in their network and through word of mouth, Michelle eventually sold out her event.
More than 120 people showed up for screening, which went down just weeks after our NYC premiere last June on the other side of the globe. And what Michelle gave to her community that night continued to ripple throughout her community. After attending Michelle’s screening, one of her VIPs created a project called My Dream Bag, which mails bags of toiletries and clothes to a girls’ orphanage in Fiji.
“She wanted to give them the feeling that they are important and can follow their dreams,” Michelle said of the woman’s efforts for the girls. “It was amazing to see her follow her idea and inspire other people.”
Since her screening, Michelle has written an e-book, appropriately named Shine, encouraging aspiring entrepreneurs like her to listen to their inner voice and pursue their passions.
Check out the photos from Michelle’s screening in New Zealand!