Tag Archives: inspiration

Two years

Last week marked two years since I first entered the professional television news world. I actually almost completely missed it. If it weren’t for my colleague (who started at my last company on the same day as I did) pointing it out, I wouldn’t have remembered. So, what does that say? Am I that much of an exhausted zombie lately that I can’t remember things like that, which I never had any trouble recalling? Or is it just that it feels like so much longer?

That first day is one I will never forget. I couldn’t believe I was a real-life Television News Producer. I’ll never forget my interview for that job, and I’ll never forget the moment I accepted that job. Three years out of college with a B.A. in broadcast journalism and numerous internships in the industry, and I was finally offered what, up until then, I’d never known was actually my dream job. When I sat down in the producer seat for the first time, it felt right. It was like everything I had ever wanted and worked for all came down to this moment, when everything fell into place.

I remember being the unsure producer, whose writing skills weren’t quite as sharp as I’d have liked, and maybe I was a bit of a slower video editor. It’s remarkable to look back and realize the journey you’ve taken in a short amount of time. Two years later, I know I’m a much better producer than I was when I first started. But that’s the hope in any job, right? It’s worth acknowledging, though, that it feels a little bit different when you’re doing something you love, and it’s something you never thought possible. When I worked in advertising – my first “real world, grown-up” job out of college – I came a long way after a while there too. But that was  quite different from going to work every day to do something I always dreamed of doing. That is, making television.

I’ve heard it said that you should always be a little bit nervous when you get to work. When you work in television news, there are an infinite number of things that can go wrong. The teleprompter goes out. The live shot goes down. The video doesn’t come in on time. The reporter with the lead story misses deadline. The lead story changes at three minutes to the top of the show. Breaking news. It happens. These are the types of situations that prove to be examples – at least for me. I often look back at the end of my day at how I was somehow able to wrangle a coherent newscast out of everything going wrong behind the scenes. And when everything on television is smooth and makes sense – well, that’s the most rewarding of all. It’s perhaps a bit obnoxious of me to say much of this, but I am certainly proud of how far I’ve come. Two years ago, I had no idea I’d be working the job I am and getting the experience I am. But as they say – you never know.

Life moves at the speed of light

Well, it has been quite some time. It’s been a busy several months, professionally, personally, and romantically, so I haven’t quite had many opportunities to sit and blog, unfortunately. Come the new year, I’m hoping to be able to get back into the swing of it because as any writer knows – it’s necessary. And I miss it.

Work has been keeping me busy and it is still everything I never knew I wanted to do, until now. I’ve met a wonderful group of mentors and peers whom I learn from every day. I’ve made good friends and developed an active social life. Perhaps best of all, I met one person in particular with whom I connected immediately, and five months later, we’re still going strong.

As the year winds down, I’ve been thinking a bit about just how transformative this year has been. I say it every year, but this year it’s truer than ever – I’m ending the year in a radically different place from where I started it. When 2015 started, I’d made some goals for myself, from continuing the path to my dream job to opening my mind to new things and new people. I had known that it was high time to make some changes, and although being away from family and close friends is difficult, I’ve learned that I am capable of making it work.

It’s incredible how taking a chance might lead you to do something you’d never thought you would – and it actually working out in the end. Still, it’s been a year full of ups and downs. But the light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter. 2016, I’m ready for you.

Money Doesn’t Buy Happiness, But Experience Does

Being a few years out of college, it’s about the time when my peers and I look at each other to evaluate and compare the varying degrees of success we’ve achieved. Some of us have reached mid-level jobs in our careers, some of us have gotten engaged or married, some of us are well-established and making good money, and some of us are achieving our dreams.

Arianna Huffington is one of my favorite people to follow on Twitter because of her positivity, inspiration and encouragement and commitment to a healthy mind, body, and work/life balance. She shared an article last week from Entrepreneur comparing success to happiness, emphasizing the fact that they are not one and the same as some may think – a very relevant point for my fellow millennials and me. Having been at a crossroads of my career before, I have had to face that question: Join the corporate world with a consistent paycheck or freelance in a cut-throat, unpredictable industry?

They say that money can’t buy happiness. Maybe it can at first; paying the bills and having extra funds to splurge on a night out or a new pair of shoes is undoubtedly satisfying. But after a while, I think we all learn that designer bags and a closet full of cute outfits don’t have long-term effects on our state of being. Material objects won’t bring us happiness. They’ll make us happy for a moment, but chances are it’s probably not fulfilling. So much research has been done to show that investing in an experience is better for us than splurging on a material item.

I would be a hypocrite to say that I’ve never spent a lot of money on material possessions – I’ve had shopping sprees and have decided to buy the designer bag despite not really needing it. But I’ve also been lucky enough to be able to invest in traveling, and the overseas trip I took last year is one that I’ll never forget.

We often think that attaining certain things – whether material or not – will make us happy. “I’ll be happier after I buy the new iPhone” or “I’ll be happier when I’m in a relationship.” But more often than not, these statements are false. We can show off that we have these things and maybe others don’t, and maybe that might be satisfying for a moment. We want these things because aside from happiness, we think they are markers of success. But maybe they aren’t.

Perhaps the mark of success is different for every individual. Maybe it’s starting a family. Maybe it’s landing a dream job. Maybe it’s safely backpacking across Europe alone. Or maybe it’s just figuring out exactly what we want and going after it.

Swim With the Sharks

My mother, a seasoned sales professional, is obsessed with ABC’s Shark Tank so I’ll occasionally watch the show with her. For anyone who hasn’t seen it, the sharks are self-made millionaires and billionaires, investors and entrepreneurs who came up with brilliant business ideas. When pitched new products on the show by average people, sharks can choose to invest their money in the growing business.

Shark Barbara Corcoran recently wrote on LinkedIn about how to reinvent oneself in a new career. While the application to one’s career is clear, it can also help in life in general. Knowing that someone who is so wildly successful had the thought process to write down these things that I could so easily relate to is enlightening, not to mention very reassuring.

No reinvention required, just repackaging. Re-branding. I know so many people who have completely transformed themselves over the past few years during and even after college – whether it was a new haircut, dramatic weight loss, new interests, relocation, or yes, a totally new career. You’re still the same person, but the presentation might be slightly different.

“Forgive me if I try to change.” A lyric from one of my favorite songs by my absolute favorite band Yellowcard, making a big change could very well alienate people you were once very close to. Relocating could put strains on friendships that once seemed strong. As we grow older, we develop into the adults we’re going to be and evolve from the young people we once were. In the process, we may grow apart from those with whom we used to be close. I think that’s one we can all relate to.

Success doesn’t happen overnight. Barbara mentions starting out small and growing into fulfilling her large-scale, ultimate goal when rebuilding her persona, but it’s important to realize this for any goal you set in life. I have a big-picture dream for myself and my career. But it’s never going to happen unless I set a smaller, attainable goal for myself to get me on the road to that dream destination. The idea of setting a lot of smaller goals in order to achieve a bigger one is a good way to inspire oneself to keep on keeping on.

As someone who is still figuring out her place in the world (cue that quarter-life existential crisis), hearing words of wisdom and insight from people who have been in a similar place is beyond helpful and inspiring. In the moment, you likely won’t be able to see what’s in front of you for what it really is, but all of that clears up when you’re glancing back.