How To Be Professional
Hey guys! Sticking with this month’s passion theme, today’s article is all about how to be professional! If you’ve seen ‘My Story’ or ‘My Break Up Story’ on YouTube, you know that I’ve always been interested in the fashion and entertainment industry, but wasn’t always sure where that would take me. Fast forward to now: I own my own company, I’m producing a clothing line, I shoot segments for E! News + I travel across the country speaking about how to have your own business in social media. Whew. I can’t believe that’s actually my life! But it wasn’t always my life- I’ve always known that I wanted to be in fashion, but I didn’t necessarily know what that would look like- or how that would happen [I mean, Instagram + YouTube channels didn’t even EXIST when I was dreaming about what I wanted to do. Crazy right?] I’m going to share some of the top things I’ve learned throughout my years in this business, so whether you’re someone who wants to work in fashion or is just starting to work in more professional settings, I hope my post can help you be confident in whatever stage you’re in!
1. Go After What You Want
People always say ‘go after your dreams’ and ‘go after what you want’, but doing that in real life looks much different than in theory. Pursuing your dream is a lifestyle- not just a big decision [like moving to LA]. It requires daily actions of choosing your dreams over your comfort and often times putting in years of work before seeing any results. This is true of any industry: Want to be a top blogger? That means you have to be putting in the time of shooting and posting long before anyone is ever reading your posts. Want to be a partner in a successful law firm? That means studying for years in school + working your way to top for years even after school. Be realistic with yourself about just how much work you actually have to do to make your dream a reality. I try to be very open about how much work this industry really takes, as well as where I started from- so hopefully you can be inspired that you can achieve your goals too.
Going after what you want is easier on a large scale basis than in every day action. I know you’re thinking- ‘what? Making a huge choice to follow your dream is called a huge choice for a reason! Moving across the country to pursue a career in the entertainment industry is scary!’ That is true- uprooting your whole life to go after a goal is a huge decision! But choosing to stick with your path every single day is actually where most people fall away. Tons of people move to LA every year to be an actress or become a director, but when faced with the hard choices like: working late, putting in extra hours, doing jobs for free, spending time and money to better their skill set- they choose the more fun moments in the day like: hanging out with friends, going out to bars, spending time at the beach, staying up late watching netflix instead of studying. These are all simple, every day choices that ultimately take you away from your goal. My life now may seem glamorous, but the road to getting here was anything but. Ultimately, it’s the people with the dedication and drive who make it to where they want to be.
2. Really Go After What You Want
Okay, you’ve made it to point #2. You’re ready to really go after what you want. Basically I’m telling you to be assertive [NOT aggressive- it’s a fine line to walk. That’s why you need fabulous shoes #justification]. If you know what you want to do, figure out how you can get there. Send emails. Make phone calls. And then follow up. I hear so many people say ‘oh I emailed them once and they never responded’ and my reaction isn’t ‘Oh, that’s unfortunate’– it’s ‘let go of your pride, suck it up and send another message!’
You need to realize that most people working in the position that you want to be in are very busy people. Not getting a response to one email doesn’t mean it will never happen for you. They probably saw it, made a note to respond and then got overwhelmed with the 400 other projects they’re working on. I can say this because it happens to me every day. I don’t even respond to my best friends because I’m so overwhelmed with what’s right in front of me! Now if someone is writing you back and saying ‘you’re not a good fit for us’, don’t keep stalking them. But don’t be discouraged by a lack of response and continue to put yourself out there. I hired my last summer intern because she sent me multiple messages about how she wanted to work with me, and followed up despite me not answering her first email. That was the reason I ended up hiring her. She had the drive to go after what she wanted, and that kind of ambition is exactly what people want to work with!
3. Don’t Take It Personally
This tip goes hand in hand with my last one. If you don’t hear back from an email, don’t take it personally! Like I said, they’re probably extremely busy and that’s the real reason they haven’t gotten back to you. I’ve heard people say things like ‘they said they were interested in my idea, but they never got back to me so I guess they really weren’t’. Girl. Take ownership for yourself! I wish I could insert clap emojis there. It doesn’t mean they weren’t interested, it means they got bombarded with their own to do list and YOU need to put yourself back out there!
You also need to realize that how people treat you is not a reflection of you. You never know what someone is going through or where they are at in their life. I remember when I first started working with my management company, I thought they hated me based off of the emails they would send me. I would get short one worded answers like “No” or “Okay” and all I could think was ‘wow, they REALLY don’t like me’ flash forward years later and now I’m sending the same one sentence long emails back because that’s what they have time for. They get straight to the point- answers without any filler- because they’re busy people and need the information and the information only. I no longer read into emails or messages and I no longer take things so personally. They’re business people, making business decisions! Once you frame your thinking to be business instead of emotional, you’ll be a lot more assertive in going after what you want because you’re less afraid of getting hurt.
4. Pursue Relationships
You hear horror stories of people using each other only to get what they want, and unfortunately, that does happen in any industry. I want all of my readers to know that you do not have to be that person to succeed. I have placed value on real relationships throughout my entire career, and never once tried to buddy up with someone just because of their connections, or collab with them just to grow my numbers. Take interest in the people you’re surrounded with, get to know them as people and really put effort into the working relationships you have. I feel like I’ve been so blessed to have avoided so many of the classic hollywood horror stories, and I truly do think that’s because of the real relationships I’ve built. I’m surrounded by a team of people who I genuinely care about, and they genuinely care about me. That’s so beautiful to have!
I hope my tips on pursuing your passions and being professional could help inspire you to achieve your goals! What do you dream about doing? What are you doing to help accomplish those dreams? Let me know in the comments! Love you guys!