Tag Archives: finding your muse

More 20-something musings.

Rainy day and umbrella girl

It’s just been one of those days. The kind where you wake up on the proverbial wrong side of the bed, nothing goes right, and no matter how much work you get through, the to-do list keeps growing.  In spite of my commitment to remaining positive in the face of adversity, today simply has me beat. The dogs stole my favorite cozy house socks and chewed them up, not once but three times. My lovely new car ended up in the shop less than a week after we bought it, and the hubby’s car, apparently a magnet for nails and other sharp objects, got a flat tire immediately following a client meeting. Stranded in front of a florist’s shop in Hollywood, I waited half an hour for the (very rude) AAA guy to arrive and change my tire. He felt that speaking on the cell phone with his paramour the entire time he was changing my tire was an appropriate thing to do. Let me assure you, it was not.

The hubby, my go-to source for peace and happiness, is traveling on business and can’t help too much from thousands of miles away. When I called dear old mom for a pick me up, all I got was more bad news dumped on my head. And by ‘more bad news’ I mean guilt, insults, and a lot of really, really bad news. Yes, it was just one of those days.

In my opinion, being in your mid-twenties is just as confusing as being a teenager. Not only do you go through the same soul-searching about who you really are and what you want to do with your life, but you also have the added responsibility of car payments, student loans, rent, grocery bills, parental issues, and friends with expensive tastes… who like to eat out… a lot. I wish I could just throw caution to the wind and leap blindly into life, hoping that the soft clouds of ambition, hard work and good luck will catch my fall. But I simply can’t, knowing that one paycheck can’t sustain our lifestyle, and knowing that my parents, who I’ve always turned to for assistance, suddenly find themselves in a worse position than I am.

Blech – the growing pains of the Quarterlife Crisis. With issues like these, I’m looking forward to my 30s like a kid dreaming of Santa. (And if you have some age advice like, “you’ll only have a whole new host of issues in your 30s”… now’s not the time to share. Don’t burst my splendid vision of the future, not just yet ;). For now, all I can really do is count my blessings, have faith and keep on trekking.  If you’ve already suffered through a quarterlife crisis, how did you finally get through it?

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100th Post, and new 20 something musings

I realize this picture is totally random and does not correlate with the post whatsoever, but I love it, and this is my blog so I can do what I want. So there.

"This as real as it gets" (10 pts for anyone who knows where those lyrics come from). I realize this picture is totally random and does not correlate with the post whatsoever, but I love it. Plus, I really wanted an excuse to make reference to the "I'm on a Boat" music video, hehehe...

I have a confession. I have been putting off my 100th post for over a week now, ever since I realized that it was the 100th Shopaholica post. The enormity of the milestone post weighed on me for some time, and I didn’t want it to be wasted on a random hair piece or a few trivial sentences about eyelash enhancing mascara (which, if you are interested in the topic, is on the posting horizon).  However, as the days dragged on and I grew increasingly busy with other work (you know, the painfully dull kind that pays the bills), I realized that unless I just sat down and started typing, Shopaholica would never have a 100th post.

So it is without earth-shattering news,  stories involving wedding planning hilarity or a fabulous must-have frock that I begin my 100th post. I thought perhaps I’d spend the post reflecting on the twists and turns of Shopaholica and my life, and see where it takes me. Who needs a well-planned post when random musings will do, eh? Well, I suppose I’ll let you be the judge of the method’s success.

February 9, 2008 is the fateful day Shopaholica was born into the webiverse. At the time I found myself newly engaged, sitting at home all day and utterly, hopelessly lost as to what my next career move might be. Just two months prior the fabulous fashion startup company I was euphorically climbing the ranks of imploded with a sudden bang, absorbing with it my aspirations to become a young fashion VP selling the virtues of our blog and trend stores to the retail world.  The first day after finding myself jobless I took out every Manolo, Jimmy and Prada pump in my closet and busied myself by hand cleaning and polishing each one to an impeccable gleam. Career be damned, I was going to step out in style regardless of my employment status. Continue reading

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Quarterlife Career Musings…

prime-meridian-2-croppedprime-meridian-11

Being in your mid-20s isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Forget the fun, fortune and fame of The Hills and welcome to the grim reality of post-college life.

It’s truly an odd place; stuck in the middle of the complete dependence of your devil-may-care college years and the fully independent, responsibility-laden promised land of your thirties. There’s a certain heaviness about it all, as if the choices you make and paths you wander down now will determine the next ten or twenty years of your life. And often times, they do.

The thing I’m struggling with right now is the importance of my next big career move. After freelancing and wearing a million different hats during the past year and a half, it feels like the right time to settle down and move confidently in the direction of my future. Finding that path to head down, however, is proving to be quite the challenge. The biggest problem is the plethora of equally viable options that I can see myself pursuing. Writer/ Editor? Definitely.  Business School for an MBA? Why not! Event/ Wedding Planner? Sign me up. Entrepreneur? Heck, yes.   With interests so varied and a penchant for enjoying both the analytical as well as creative aspects of a job, I’m left torn down the middle. This dilemma conjures a picture I have of myself happily straddling the Prime Meridian in Greenwich wearing pink heart rain boots, hair in pigtails and a goofy grin on my face; only this time half of me is standing in the artist’s world of uber-creativity, while the other half is planted firmly in the c-suite behind balance sheets and cash flow statements.

It begs the question, was college worth it? I toiled, I studied, I aced my exams, and then I graduated magna cum laude with a degree in Communication and a minor in Business. Over the four years at USC I learned all about public relations, communication theory, public speaking, presentations, management, finance and accounting. But I never learned what I truly enjoyed doing, or what I was passionate about.

The hard work throughout college resulted in a job that started the week after graduation at a top PR firm. I felt accomplished and proud of myself, but deep down I was also utterly, hopelessly lost and confused. There was nothing in particular that made me want to pursue public relations, except that it was the field of my first unpaid internship, which allowed me to get a paid internship, which built up my post-college resume and helped me land the PR job. I felt like I had thoughtlessly taken a few steps down a path that suddenly turned into a steep hill. Without noticing what was happening at the time, my life turned into a slippery slope where one silly internship steamrolled into my chosen career field. Eight months later, stressed, depressed and miserable, I finally found the courage to try something else.

Writing freed me, and the ability to think creatively felt like an underused muscle I was just beginning to rediscover. I realized that my college years somehow robbed me of the ability to be creative, follow my heart and truly know myself. Though the past two years have been therapeutic and freeing, I still can’t tell you my ten-year plan. Instead, I’m trying to focus on staying in the here and now, and actively pursuing things that I truly enjoy. I always have and always will love the freedom of creative expression that I feel from writing, but I’ve also found that the life of a work-from-home freelancer has its drawbacks.

Yes, sitting at home in my (undeniably stylish) pajamas and staring at a computer has left me yearning for some daily human interaction.  Mike is always up for a chat, coffee or a nice long walk, but I still miss the boost of collaboration – working together, pooling ideas and resources, and coming up with a smashing result that’s greater than the sum of everyone’s parts.

Over the past few months, I’ve found myself drawn deliciously deeper into the realm of pursuing event & wedding planning – a process that requires countless hours of creative collaboration. As you know if you’re a regular reader, I’m already planning my good friend’s wedding from top to bottom – and am having an absolute ball. I love calling the vendors, researching the best options, creating design ideas, and seeing them come to fruition. Every day in event planning brings a new possibility and a new challenge to create something beautiful for your client – and I simply can’t get enough of beautiful things.

As I counsel other friends on their events, throw my own and plan every little detail for Jenny’s upcoming nuptials, I see that doing this full time is something I could really throw myself into wholeheartedly.  After much hemming and hawing, last week I decided to dip my toe into the pond by choosing a name { The Stylish Soiree } and reserving the URL.  The Stylish Soiree: The art of crafting impeccable events with style.  It’s definitely me, and I’m infinitely excited to jump in with both feet as soon as I have time to build the site.  Is it my life calling? Maybe, maybe not. But it’s certainly a place to start.

So, while I still don’t have my ten year plan, what I do have is a new direction. Writing is and always will be my first love, and I do not intend to give up on it while pursuing event planning. The beauty of having two work-from-home jobs is that I can arrange my schedule to include both without sacrifice, and embrace both the business side and the world of the creative. That girl with pigtails and pink heart rainboots? Looks like she can have the best of both worlds after all.

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Deep Thoughts on… life and happiness

Loves It....You know what’s tough? Life. It’s the good, the bad, the whirlwind of everything, the success, the failure, the joy and sorrow, the hard work, the luck and the only thing we have. So what makes a good life; a life worth living? Is it the people in it, the places you’ve gone, the things you’ve seen, the knowledge you’ve amassed? Or is every life a good life, simply because life is the epitome of possibility, and life is what you make of it?

I feel that life is what you make of it, and not just because I’ve seen “The Secret” (although, full disclosure here, I do have to admit that it’s one of my favorite movies/books/books on tape!). With all the different possibilities and opportunities out there in the world, I’m not convinced that things happen at random. And though many find comfort in theories of predetermined fate, for me that idea is too constraining on my freedom of choice. I love to think that life is a series of choices an individual makes and that you can choose to end up wherever you want, however you want. After all, isn’t that what our parents tell us when we are young and impressionable? Continue reading

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