Monthly Archives: January 2013

19. Nurture your career early on.

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It took me awhile to find my career path. Remember, it also took me 10 years to graduate from college. So by the time I found out I hwas interested in advertising, I was already 27. My first advertising job was at a big agency in Los Angeles and I started as a senior print traffic manager. Essentially, I ran stuff around all over the place. Anyway, this position allowed me to interact with virtually everyone and every department at the agency. And I knew within the first couple of months that I wanted to be a copywriter. This was not an easy choice – being a copywriter involves putting a portfolio together and praying that some creative director will like it enough to give you a chance. So I immediately started taking portfolio classes in Los Angeles and asked copywriters at the agency to mentor me. Many of them let me sharpen my teeth on some copywriting assignments, which included a TV spot for the Los Angeles Public Library, where I got to work with Stockard Channing. I did all this in addition to my day job, and eventually, I became a copywriter. At some other agency – but that’s another story.

Word to the wise: When it comes to your career, don’t wait. Do everything you can, as early as you can, and you’ll be on the path to success sooner. Better yet, if you graduated college in four years (see post #13, “Don’t Take 10 Years to Get a Four-Year Degree), you’ll have a huge leg up on someone like me. If you’re still trying to figure things out, visit http://www.careerpath.com. They’ve got some great advice and a test you can take to see what best suits your talents.

Was your career path straight and narrow? Did you get to where you want to be early in life? Note: If I’m lucky enough to get a book deal, your comments may be published anonymously in the upcoming book, “Wise Before 25, 50 Things Young Women Should Know.”

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18. Be grateful for everything you have and don’t worry so much about what you don’t.

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I woke up this morning feeling a little blue, thinking and worrying about the things I don’t have. Like a husband. Or a house on ????????????????????????????????????????the beach. And more money in my savings account. There are some other things on the list, but you get the idea. I remember one of my roommates always used to say, “Focus on what you have, not on what you don’t.” Sometimes, that’s hard to do. So, I try to think about my life and the things I have, like: a loving family, supportive friends, a beautiful cat, a condo I own, freedom, independence, this blog, a fun car, the beach (10 minutes away), and most important, my health. I’m sure if I think on it a little harder and a little longer, there’s lots of other great stuff in my life, too. And even if I don’t have everything I want (right now), I realize I have more than most.

Word to the wise: Don’t let what you want get in the way of what you have. There are many gifts in your life. As you can see from my list, most of them have nothing to do with money. Although it never hurts to have some. Make a point of recognizing and being grateful for your gifts. And if you’re really bummed, just listen to “Don’t Worry, Be Happy,” by Bobby McFerrin. If that doesn’t make you feel better, I don’t know what will.

What do you do when you get the blues? Note: If I’m lucky enough to get a book deal, your comments may be published anonymously in the upcoming book, “Wise Before 25, 50 Things Young Women Should Know.”