I l-o-v-e Christina’s website/blog 40:20 Vision, where she shares advice aimed at 20-somethings from 40-somethings. There’s something so wonderful about receiving advice from people who have been in similar situations and experiences as you have! I’m SO thrilled she is willing to share while I’m traveling and her post today is an extra-special Thursday Thankful List. She’s sharing five “bad” or difficult things that happened in her twenties that she is thankful for. What a fantastic way to look at our current worries.
Thanks Christina! Enjoy!
1. Moving across the country for a relationship that didn’t work
When my boyfriend got transferred to California at about the same time I was getting bored with my first job and itching for a career switch, I agreed to move with him. I decided to let go of my fear of not being able to get another job with visions of tennis, Lake Tahoe and wine country in my head.
One year later, I moved back to New York, one “failed relationship” richer and a marketing director title under my belt. I had quit a job, gotten a job and came back to find another job complete with more money and a new direction. So many people said upon my return, “ so sorry it didn’t work out (e.g. you didn’t marry this man you moved for)…and I just had to smile. I wasn’t. I had an adventure and found the confidence to know I can get another job! Plus I discovered my love affair was really with New York. I learned a lot from that guy and from living in Cali….but neither held the excitement of NYC.
2. Getting “laid-off”
Well, I’d say it was more fired but I still got a good reference and great experience. But it taught me that a job is as much about relationships as it is about the quality of your work. I naively came swooshing in from my big ad agency job in New York City to a male-centric organization in a slow moving industry. I thought it would be a good idea to update the creative process with the ad agency. It did yield better work but it rubbed the agency head the wrong way…and he just happened to have a long time relationship and golf habit with my CEO. They just wanted someone to keep things moving, not someone to move things forward. When moving a company forward you have to check in to see if everyone else is along for the ride.
3. That my only friend in NYC moved back to Chicago the week I moved to the city
It forced me to make new friends, to look up friends of friends and reach out to relative strangers. Moving to a new city with no friends to rely on gives you a head start on networking.
4. That I had lots of bad dates.
I still think bad dates make good stories. Plus, it gives you a lot more perspective on what a good date is.
5. That I was underpaid.
I got pursued by another company and got an offer for almost 50% more than what I was making. Then I got a counteroffer from my own company. Damn. I felt pretty stupid for not having been asking for more and better raises. So that part is not what I am grateful for per se. But what I am grateful for is that it taught me to ask big. Women tend to undervalue themselves so at least it got me over that bad habit!