Career Girl Diary, Featured
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7 Important Lessons I’ve Learned The Hard Way The Past Year

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Today we’re starting with something new and very special to us! We started CGD 7 months ago, and we think it would be fun to write more about our own experiences and really get to know each other. Us as a team but also you girls, our loyal readers who visit our site regularly. So from now on the CGD girls will write a weekly column sharing their experiences.

CELINA

I really love reading personal stories and hope you girls will like this. Today, I’ll be sharing 7 important lessons I’ve learned the past year.  Don’t forget to leave a comment below and tell me the most important lessons you’ve learned this year. I really would love to read your comments and learn from each others experiences! Also, if you would like to know more about the CGD girls or have any other topics, you would love to read on CGD leave a comment below!

1. Always believe in yourself.

Just graduated and full of dreams, I dreamed of moving to London to pursue a career in fashion. As naive as I was, I moved to London when I was 25 and thought it would be fairly easy to find a job. Not knowing that living in London is ridiculously expensive, and the competition in the fashion industry is HUGE! I got robbed the first day,  my apartment was a scam and after this experience I wasn’t too sure about my decision of moving to London. The first months in this new city were challenging. I felt alone, had little money, didn’t know anyone and all I had was a dream of working in the fashion industry. Looking back, I think this was the most important lesson for me as a person. It made me stronger and I learned to fight for my dreams and what is really important in life. I didn’t want to give up and return back home failing. Instead I went through a difficult time and made it happen!

2. Motivate yourself

I needed motivation. I wanted to read stories from girls who went through a difficult time as well but are very successful now, how did they handle their insecurities and the many rejections? To my surprise there were many! Oprah, Sophia Amoruso and other influential women I look up to all had to fight for their success. This inspired me and gave me the courage to continue my journey. These women actually motivated me so much, I knew I wanted to create an online community where other girls could find daily motivation as well. An online blog with career motivation, lifestyle articles but also a bit about beauty and fashion.

3. Don’t take no for an answer!

As I said earlier, always believe in yourself and don’t take no for an answer. Things will not come easy and it’s up to you to make the impossible possible. When I started job hunting in London. I received many rejections and it made me insecure. Why was I not good enough? Why didn’t I get the opportunity to show my talents? Although my self esteem went down, it didn’t stop me. I kept on applying for jobs, rewriting my cover letter to almost stalking companies. (not sure if you should do that too). I decided to do internships to get more work experience as it would be better than doing nothing. I followed a course in Personal Styling to gain more skills and make myself more interesting for potential employers. Although, I had a degree in Business Administration and relevant work experience. It wasn’t enough. So I had a choice, accept that potential employers thought I was not good enough for the job and pack my bags and leave London or gain more skills, more work experience and get that job! After one year, I finally managed to get my dream job!

You are responsible for your own success never blame another person for your failures.

4. Your network is valuable.

Make sure to treat all people with respect and keep in touch. Add them on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter etc.  One day you will need them or they will need you. That one PR person from your previous internship could help you with your job later in life. When we started CGD we needed help with the website, photographers, contributors and brands willing to work with us. That’s where your network could come in handy.

5. Be willing to work hard.

I’m going to be honest. This year was like a ride on a roller coaster. We started CGD in January this year and ever since I’ve been working really hard. My friends are telling me: ‘you’re always working, you need to enjoy life’. The thing is when your work is your passion, you won’t see it as a boring job.

6. You can’t do everything by yourself.

This is really important. I’m still learning how to work in a team and bring out the best in people. At CGD, we work with a team of 33 people. It’s important to admit your strengths and weaknesses. And no, that’s not a bad thing. Another person’s weakness can be your strength and knowing that could lead to a really strong team!

7. Be patient.

Hard work would not lead to immediate results. This is actually something I have to tell myself every day. I think I’m the most impatient person in the world and if it’s up to me everything happens now. I motivate myself by looking at other people who are where I want to be later in life. Did they become successful in just 2 years? If they were extremely lucky, yes, but it took most of them 5-10 years. Look at the bigger picture and be patient. Rome wasn’t built in one day.

Now, I would love to know your lessons! Let me know in the comments below. Oh and for the girls who don’t know it yet CGD is nominated for the Bloglovin’ Awards 2015 . It would mean the world to me and the rest of our team if you would vote for us!

xx Celina

25 Comments

  1. Kelsey says

    Thanks for sharing your personal experience!!! #1 hits home for me in a big way – I also moved away somewhere and was hit with hard times! It’s those big, tough moments in life that challenge you and allow you to learn what your strengths are and to believe in yourself!

    http://www.blondesandbagels.com

  2. Neha says

    This whole post is spot on. I love that you’re open about your experiences because let’s face it, the unknown is scary. Once you graduate from college, you’re thrown out into the real world and you suddenly don’t know which path to take, who to work/network with, and you’re in a state where you lose trust in your own abilities. I’m almost 26, work full-time at a marketing agency, second shoot weddings on the weekends, and I’m STILL not sure of where I want to be in another decade. It’s all about rolling with the punches, setting small goals, and working hard to be where you’ve always wanted to be to live the life you’ve always dreamed of. :)

    Neha // http://nehasharmaphoto.com/blog/

  3. Agnes says

    Thank you so much for your story. I am in a dark place right now. I have degree in English Language and I moved to Dublin almost three years ago. I thought I could be a teacher here but it’s almost impossible so I decided to change my profession for IT, programming. I am trying to get an internship and I am doing a degree in IT right now, one moth to the end. I hope my dream will come true and I will finally do what I want which is working on IT sector as a software or web developer. What I learned? To don’t give up and be patient, to work hard on our dreams, to believe in yourself and that with hard work you and persistence you can achieve whatever you want.
    Wish u all the best and hope that all your dreams will come true.
    I am visiting your site everyday, you give me strength to keep fighting. Thank you.

  4. Lotte says

    Oh yes, London can be tough, used to live there too :)

    The main thing I’ve learned this past year is that some people (like me) need a push to move forward. I was in a job I hated, but I never pulled myself together to try and find a new job. Untill I quit. It was super scary, but forced me to put myself out there, use my network and basically fight for my dream. And everything worked out great :)

  5. Katelyn McPhee says

    This post hit the nail on the head. Absolutely love it- I’m sure it will be one I come back to many times over.

  6. Erin Yilmaz says

    “Don’t accept no for an answer…but don’t be afraid to give no as an answer.” It took me a long time, but learning to say no when needed was one of the hardest things for me to do. I was a chronic people pleaser and hated to let anyone down. Then I realized that I was in fact letting myself down at times, just so that I wouldn’t be letting anyone else down.

    • Celina says

      That’s so true Erin. For lot’s of girls it’s very difficult to say no sometimes. But in the end it’s very important to never let yourself down.

  7. Erika says

    What a great post! Thank you for sharing your experience! I graduated from a journalism program last year and I’m still looking for my dream job which is in the fashion industry as well!

    Erika
    http://whaterikawears.com/

  8. Sophie Powell says

    Massive congrats on coming so far and living your dreams! Career Girl Daily is my favourite site to visit and I can’t wait to find out more about the people who make it happen! I would love to find a job one day that I am as passionate about as you are, so thanks for your support in my journey to get there! Best of luck with the Bloglovin award, you all deserve it!
    Sophie x
    (I’m running a 1st blog birthday giveaway to thank everyone for all the support in my first year of blogging! http://www.thescientificbeauty.com/1st-birthday-giveaway/ )

  9. Rachel Ang says

    So true! When your passion is your job, you’ll never see it as a boring job!! cant agree more with that!

    Rachel x
    thehappybits.blogspot.com

  10. Lucy says

    I love love love this blog – it’s one of my favourites. I just wished you guys proofread a little more! Except ≠ accept etc… otherwise your blog is wonderful and so inspiring! I’ve just spotted grammar mistakes on here a few times that could so easily rectified (if they weren’t there your blog would actually be perfect!) x

  11. Lisa says

    Thanks for sharing your personal experiences with all of us! I’ve become such a fan of CGD because you embrace so many of the above lessons throughout your blog posts. I also think it’s so important to recognize your mistakes, fix them, and learn from them. I look forward to more of what makes CGD CGD :)

    • Celina says

      Thanks Lisa! It means the world to me knowing we’re actually doing something great :) and inspire all you girls to be the best you can be.

  12. Suzzy says

    I love how you show vulnerability and the “behind the scenes” image. Not many bloggers do that, so well done!

    What I’d add (something I’m only just embracing now) is – don’t stay in your comfort zone. Imagine you’re a ball. The more you stretch and force yourself to get out of that ball, the more you can start to realise you’re actually a diamond! Xxx

  13. Madge says

    Thanks so much for sharing! I recently launched my blog and it’s encouraging to see other young women following their heart and choosing to reach for their dreams. Keep pressing, you’re doing amazing work.

    http://www.youcanchooselife.com
    Encouraging you to choose the life you want…everyday!

  14. Mariah says

    Perfect timing! I am currently in a very similar situation where I pretty much lost everything, still struggling to find a job in my industry, and have received rejection after rejection.. For the past week, I’ve been contemplating packing up and moving back home, but something in my heart is telling me to stay and keep working towards my dreams. Thanks for sharing your story : )

  15. Cindy says

    Just recently saw something about a guy who moved to Barcelona and commuted to London daily, must be as tough as NYC to make it there!
    Thanks for the inspiring post, I’m always feeling down on myself it seems lately.

    theeverglitter.com

    • Celina says

      Well, Cindy it makes so much sense! As living in Barcelona would be a lot cheaper than London. I think it’s definitely tough in big cities like NYC or London because a lot of people come with the same dream and that’s why the competition is HUGE but in the end it’s worth the struggle.
      Always stay positive!

  16. Geoffrey says

    All: Enjoyed reading this BLOG post. Taking on London in the fashion industry. That is very gutsy. Just starting out too! Hats off to you. Started my career around 30 yrs ago. These days, I am helping out a dear friend start/build out her fashion/fitness BLOG. Doing the marketing/branding and IT work. When I first started out in my career, I had studied 5 years to take on a career that basically ceased to exist. So I changed professions and settled for less pay. Best move I ever made. The bottom line is that when you are starting out, it’s the WORK EXPERIENCE that counts. Second, the world is full of TALENT that is going no where and doing nothing. The person that works the hardest often wins. Times change. Jobs are lost. The need to re-invent yourself never ceases. But it will get easier. These days, my INBOX is full of unsolicited offers to work places I have never ever heard of. LinkedIn and Twitter never cease to amaze me. Last, NEVER sell yourself short and always make the most of your opportunities, especially more experienced people around you. Experience is a great teacher especially if has been through the trenches a few dozen times…….Cheers! OVER THE TOP, ladies and gents. We’re not getting any younger.

  17. Kelsey J. says

    I could not have said it better myself… I think these lessons are incredibly universal. Lesson 7 of being patient is one that I need to remind myself of quite often and keep learning. The best things won’t happen overnight or as quickly as it might for others.

    Loving your blog and am so glad that I found it on Bloglovin’!

  18. Hannah Lewis says

    These hit me pretty hard! No. 3 especially. Thank you for sharing and helping people realise they aren’t alone and reminding us whats’ important to move past the hard times!

    Hannah
    helloisabelle.com

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