27 THINGS I LEARNT ABOUT WORK AT THE AGE OF 27
Today is my last day as a 27-year-old (the picture below shows me having a rare moment of birthday bashfulness on my first day as a 27-year-old, what feels like much longer than 364 days ago). The past twelve months have been transformative for me, both personally and professionally. Put it down to Saturn Returns or maybe just good old-fashioned hard work and goal-setting; either way, things done changed. Here are a few lessons I've learnt along the way.
1. Your best ideas will never come from staring at your laptop. Go for a walk, take a shower, look out the window for a little while.
2. Authenticity shines through. People can tell if you’re faking it – and they really respond when you’re not.
3. Ask for more money than you think you're worth. The answer will likely be yes.
4. Working in bed is generally not a great idea. Let yourself do it sometimes, anyway.
5. Don’t watch the ‘competition’: stay focused on your own vision and set your own standards.
6. Separate your personal finances from your company finances as quickly as possible. Things get messy if you don’t.
7. Don’t let yourself become a drone. It’s important to be able to talk about something other than work at a dinner party. Read a book! Watch a film! Go to a bloody exhibition once in a while!
8. Never underestimate the power of an in-person connection. There’s a reason companies fly their employees halfway around the world to take 30 minute meetings: Eye contact counts for a lot.
9. If you want to do a different kind of work, just start doing it. No one is going to stop you (or get you started).
10. Things look very different from the outside. Don’t let other people’s perceptions of your work hype you up or get you down.
11. Self-care is not an indulgence, but a necessity. The engine won't keep running unless you look after it.
12. Speed isn’t everything. Good things take time.
13. Boldness breeds confidence. The more you try, the less you fear.
14. Ask for favours. But not too many.
15. The only person who can make you feel pressurised is yourself.
16. One task at a time. One day at a time. It will get done.
17. Don’t tell yourself you’re ‘not a numbers person’ - or indeed, an anything type of person. Don't put limitations on your own abilities in any way.
18. Know what inspires and uplifts you. Let go of things, habits, and people that don't.
19. Visual cues are important. It’s too easy to forget your goals if they’re hidden away in files or tucked away in folders.
20. Clarity is a choice.
21. You have to find a way to enjoy the day-to-day. There is nothing else.
22. If in doubt, talk it out. That conundrum you’ve spent a week turning over in your head could probably be figured out with a ten minute conversation with a wise friend or colleague (or most likely, your mum. Thanks mum).
23. Know your worth. Your ideas and time are valuable entities.
24. Keep it fun. To pursue your dreams is a privilege; try not to treat it like a chore.
25. Celebrate your successes. And then get back to work.
26. Remember why you started. Don’t let your original hopes and aspirations get lost in the admin.
27. Women are amazing (and generally much more enjoyable to work with than men). But then again, this much I already knew.