My dear friend Kristin Booker boasts an encyclopedic knowledge of fashion history, a love of '80s primetime soaps like "Dynasty" and an incredible talent for service pieces. This gal turned a 15-year recruiting career into a full-time freelancing gig, along with writing her blog, Fashion Style Beauty. She has knowledge to drop and you're gonna want to pick it up. Here, Five Rules For Life, in Kristin's words:
1. Never apologize for who you are.
The most valuable lesson I think anyone or any one thing can learn is to just find out who you are and then do it to death. I spent 15 years shackled to a cubicle and various offices after a Bugs Bunny-esque "wrong turn at Albuquerque," working for people whose sole job it was to beat every ounce of personality out of me. After escaping to a life of writing in 2008, I can honestly say that rediscovering who I am and what I'm all about has been the greatest joy of my entire life. Don't let people kick you down. Let that freak flag fly and when you're done, make a wrap dress out of it.
2. Know when to be "unreachable."
As I'm writing this on a particularly late night, obviously I forget this advice nugget sometimes, but in general, I am completely unavailable after 10 pm. As in, unreachable. I don't answer emails or social media requests every second of the day anymore and I'm so much more productive now. You have to walk away to be able to recharge and gain perspective. I also put my phone away when I'm in the company of other people. Human interaction is important. The photos on Instagram are one thing, but the actual experience is important. Be present in your life, post the photos later.
3. Put your own mask on first.
One of the biggest mistakes women make is putting everyone else's needs ahead of their own. We will give and give and give and then look around when everyone else is satisfied and realize that we're completely unsatisfied. After years of this behavior, I have learned that if Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy. I have three non-negotiables: I work out, I eat and I get massages. I'm so productive now I tell people, "No, you really WANT me to take this yoga class. Trust me." I'm a nicer person, too. A satisfied, happy woman is a force of nature. Take care of yourself.
4. It is never too late to change your life.
I quit my job in 2007, sold everything I owned and purchased a one-way ticket to New York to become a writer. Has it been rough at times? Yes. Have I ever wanted to go back to that life? Um, NO. And now here I am, squarely in my dreams. My mother went back to college in her late 50's to get a whole new degree and career and now she's considering going back for PhD. Life is about evolving and changing. That nagging in your gut? It's called instinct and it's trying to tell you something. You're in charge of your change. There is no failure in this. If you even try it, you've already won.
Envy is only useful if you can turn it into drive to accomplish your own goals (and let it go immediately.) The fastest way to drive your life into the ground is to compare yourself to others and think how much more fabulous their life is than yours. Be INSPIRED by others, but then turn and appreciate what you have. If you don't have what you want, go get it, but let people have their dreams while you have yours. The lie of scarcity is what makes me crazy, this idea that if I get what I want, there will be nothing left for you. That's such bs. Set your goals, achieve them, be grateful, rinse, repeat. You can't accurately run forward if you're looking behind yourself or at others. Look ahead, eyes on the prize and go for what YOU want.
Thanks, Kristin! Stay tuned for more Five Rules.
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