Career

Coffee Talk: Career Advice for Being in Your Mid-Twenties

April 4, 2017

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In these past few months, I’ve received a lot of questions from readers and peers regarding career advice. After having many conversions around building your dream career or how to your start your business, I thought it would be helpful if I share with you some helpful tips I’ve learned along the way.

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Identify your Passion

I’ve been lucky in that I’ve always known what make my heart sing. I’ve always enjoyed flexing my creative muscles and telling a story through acting, dance, singing, writing, style, and through a variety of other mediums. Not everyone knows so deeply what makes him or her tick and that’s ok. The reality is that your twenties are the perfect time for career exploration. While it can feel counterintuitive to do so after you’ve invested time, energy, and even finances into pursuing a specific job, there’s really no better time to try something new than right now.

If you’re still in school be sure to take advantage of internships to explore different career paths. If you’re out of school and are already in a job that feels lifeless but you’re not able to quit yet try to volunteer at an organization that sparks your interest or set up an information interview with a company. Perhaps take night classes or go to conferences to explore passions.

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Grow your Network

Network, network, network. Honestly, this is one of the most important pieces of career advice you’ll ever get. Good or bad, it all comes down to who you know, not always what you know. No matter your chosen field, your network will pay an important role throughout your career. So, it’s best if you can start growing it as early as possible. Attend networking events and be sure to utilize LinkedIn. If all else fails, talk to your family + friends and ask around if anyone knows of anyone in the industry you are most interested in.

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Build your Brand

While you’re channeling energy into building your network, you should also be working on building your personal brand. Create a personal website that can act as your digital portfolio. Also, make sure you have personalized business cards at all times. An important aspect of building your brand is also the way you carry yourself and how others perceive you in the community. Get involved by speaking at events, being more active on social media, joining associations, or volunteering for a worthy cause and make a positive name for yourself.

Learn as Much as You Can

Your twenties are the perfect time to be a sponge and absorb as much knowledge as you can. Find a mentor you trust and can learn from. Ask questions. Do research and reading on your own time. Listen closely to feedback and constructive criticism so that you can use that input to continuously grow and improve. Now is the time to learn as much as you possibly can and grow in the most formative years of your career.

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Set Goals, but be Flexible

The cliché saying “Reach for the moon. Even if you miss you’ll land among the stars” comes to mind. Setting goals allow you the structure to know what you’re working towards and it also helps to motivate. Really take the time to think through what is it is your desire to accomplish. Then research and brainstorm ways to make this a reality. Set your goals, but at the same time, recognize that life requires a certain degree of flexibility. You never know what opportunities lay ahead and if you’re too focused on following one path you may miss out on chances of a lifetime.

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Photography by Logan Ronan

 LOVE,

Blog-Signature-Hannah

The Dress: Part Two (aka Combating Imposter Syndrome)

October 20, 2016

lacma6You are exactly where you are supposed to be.

This thought entered my mind and brought an instant smile to my face. It’s a thought that I want to share with you today. In a society where we are constantly competing and racing to prove our worth, we often tend to beat ourselves up over not feeling accomplished enough. We look at what our peers are achieving and we feel small and somehow less competent or worthy.impostersyndromeWe hear a tiny voice within us that says:

“Are you sure you’re ready?” What gives YOU the right to try this?”
“You’ll be so embarrassed when you fail.”
“Don’t even bother.”

That little voice whispering that you are not fit to succeed or even try is indicative of something called “impostor syndrome,” a phrase coined in the late 1970s by two psychologists. It refers to high-achievers who experience an unrelenting fear of being exposed as “frauds” to their peers and struggle with intense feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt. Though impostor syndrome is commonly attributed to women, it actually affects almost everyone and results in self-imposed limits marked by a sensation of unworthiness.impostersyndrome1In the first part of this post, I described the significance of this dress. I shared how prior to moving to Los Angeles how I felt anxious about the transition to a new environment, and at some level was fearful over how others would perceive me. Today I want to discuss the larger topic of imposter syndrome and give you advice that I wish I had been given on ways to ditch feelings of unworthiness once and for all.lacma4 lacma5


Outfit Ingredients

Dress- Forever 21

Shirt- Zara

Sneakers- Adidas Originals


lacma3Stop comparing yourself to others. There is a distinct difference between giving your best and being the best. Likewise, there’s a distinct difference between trying to better yourself and being better than everyone else.  The true secret to overcoming Imposter Syndrome is self-acceptance:  you don’t have to attain perfection to be worthy of the success you’ve achieved. In no way does this mean that you are lowering the bar. No, it’s about resetting it to a realistic standard that doesn’t leave you forever striving and feeling inadequate. Remember you do not have to attain perfection to share something with the world that enriches people’s lives in some way.impostersyndromelacmaOwn your success. You didn’t get to where you are by chance. Just as we must take responsibility for our failures in life, we must also take responsibility for our successes. Minimizing our successes serves no one. So if you sometimes feel undeserving of your success, try writing a list of all the key things you’ve accomplished over the last 5 years.lacma2Focus on the value you bring, not on attaining perfection. One of my dearest mentors would often remind me this past year that “perfect is the enemy of the good.” Meaning that one might never complete a task if one has decided not to stop until it is perfect. It’s in the same way that people may never even begin an important task because they feel reaching perfection is too hard.

 Also by being acutely aware of how hard we’re working to keep our head above water and fulfill expectations, we often mistakenly assume others are getting by more effortlessly. The reality is that many people are stretched and struggling just like you. Perhaps not in the same way, but in their own way, with their own unique set of challenges, insecurities, and internal struggles.lacma

LOVE,

Blog-Signature-Hannah

An Image Consultant Shares How to Build a Post-College Wardrobe

July 27, 2016

This past weekend we had the pleasure of meeting up with Ginger Burr of Total Image Consultants, one of the most popular image consultants in the Boston area. I had first learned of Ginger while doing extensive market research on starting my own image consulting business when I was in college. Now, years later, we finally had the chance to meet in person! Laura and I drove to Ginger’s studio late Saturday afternoon and spent hours chatting about image consulting, style, what it means to be a female entrepreneur and so much more. Laura and I instantly felt at home in her space and began talking with Ginger as if we had known her forever.

We were taken aback by how humble and honest Ginger was in recounting her personal story. It’s not every day (especially in the fashion industry) where a person will openly share how they built their business and give you insider tips. When sharing stories of working with her plethora of clients it was evident that she deeply values empowering women of all backgrounds. This was one of the many ways that Ginger demonstrated her true authenticity and warmth. As soon as you walk through her door, you enter into a comfortable sitting space composed of cozy furniture with touches of teals and golds.

We are very eager to share with you some of the questions we talked to Ginger about. If you are also in a transitional point in your life, then you may find her words truly uplifting. As any young adult beginning your career, it is crucial that you understand more about yourself and identify what you want out of life. What we loved most about our conversation with Ginger was that she also did not have her whole life put together by her mid-twenties. Her story reminds us that no one does. These years can be tough, but they can also be immensely transformative. Becoming a top image consultant, or obtaining any impressive job title, really, is not achieved overnight. It is a journey. 

totalimageconsultantsTell us a little about yourself. If anyone had suggested when I was in my 20’s that I would be an image consultant I would have laughed. I grew up in a little town called Feeding Hills. No one there knew what an image consultant was let alone used one. Add to that the fact that I felt totally clueless about how to dress myself so how could I help someone else dress! I did, however, have a great desire to learn about fashion, but it was a different world back then – no internet, no makeover television shows and no one I knew could help me. Thankfully, when I was just about to turn 30 I met a woman, Nevena, who changed my life forever. I attended a 3-day workshop she offered called, Fashion, Color & Image. I knew immediately that it was exactly what I wanted to do with my life and that Nevena was the one to teach me. As a result, for the past 29 years I have been doing something I love that helps empower women to feel great about who they are and how they look. I feel blessed to do what I do every day!

gingerburrWhat can people expect when working with an image consultant? First of all, image consultant services are not just for someone who is famous or wealthy. They are for everyone. Most of my clients are regular women who understand the power of their image but feel they need help making that happen. When I work with my clients there are several things they will receive:

  1. Help creating a wardrobe that truly reflects who they are and meets their lifestyle needs.
  2. A plan that honors their budget. A great wardrobe can be had at any budget and knowing where to shop to maximize their budget is important. I remember asking one young client what her budget was for our shopping spree. She said $300. I asked her how many items she wanted to get for that amount and she said 10. This helped me make suggestions for where to go and we did well at H&M.
  3. Styling tools so they can feel more confident shopping and making choices for themselves. There is no exact science to creating a wardrobe and there is plenty of conflicting information available about what you should or shouldn’t wear. The tools (a personalized color palette, Fashion Fit Formula and their own inner beauty words) will help them navigate the stores with more ease and success.

imageconsultantmentor copy copytotalimageconsultantsgingerWhat advice do you have for young women who are looking to build a career wardrobe post college? Find out what others more senior in the profession you are pursuing wear to work. Yes, we live in a more casual world than we used to, but an employer wants to see that you have made an effort to appear professional – it is an act of respect. Once you have a job you represent the company while you are working and you want your image to reflect positively on that company. Employers and managers notice these things so if you want to advance in your profession this will go a long way to help that happen.

What advice do you have in general for young people who are in such a transitional point in their lives? What do you wish you could go back and tell your 23 year old self? I would tell myself two things:

  1. Stop trying to dress like everyone else just to fit in. It is your uniqueness that is beautiful and you should celebrate that not try to hide it.
  2. Get help if you need it. I wish that I had not spent so much time floundering with what looked good on me. I wasted a lot of money and never felt empowered in my clothes because my efforts were all hit or miss (mostly miss!). If I knew then what I know now about how to dress I would have had so much more self-confidence at a younger age.

accessorizeLastly, what things can young women do to help build their overall confidence? 

  1. Don’t compare yourself to others. Celebrate your uniqueness. For many years in my youth I compared myself to others both in terms of how I looked and my accomplishments. I never felt like I measured up and that thinking never helped me feel good about myself. When you cultivate what makes you special and believe in yourself, your positive energy is contagious and others will believe in you, too.
  1. Appreciate what you have. It is so easy to let negativity infiltrate our lives. Years ago I watched a video called ‘The Strangest Secret.’ It was a precursor to today’s popular law of attraction philosophy. The takeaway was that, ‘you become what you think about most.’ In our world, where bad news is everywhere it’s so easy to get bogged down in that. But, that negativity is not what you want to cultivate in your life. Spend some time each day—maybe during your morning shower or before you fall asleep at night—expressing all the ways in which you appreciate what you have. Even simple things like being thankful for your hot shower or the sun shining will make you smile. This one small act can help draw more good things to you.

imageconsultantsThank you so much again Ginger!


If you are interested in learning more about Ginger Burr, or about her services, you can reach her here


Love,

Blog-Signature-Hannah

+ Laura

A #GirlBoss Weekend – Planning Your Perfect Girls’ Weekend

July 9, 2016

girlsweekendseaglassin The problem with being a #girlboss is that we lead crazy, hectic, fulfilling, demanding, stressful, and exciting lives. Whether you’re juggling work and school, putting in extra hours in the office, putting in extra hours outside of the office on a business venture or passion, raising kids, or some combination of these things, it isn’t easy keeping up with these unrelenting demands. But girl bosses are always up for the challenge, often sacrificing their own health and sanity to make it work. seaglassinncape Recently, I watched the movie The Intern (how could I resist an Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro joint appearance?) In the first half hour of this movie I was having major Devil Wears Prada feels. Anne Hathaway plays a badass CEO of a startup online retailer. She lives in a gorgeous NY brownstone and she’s a mom and wife on top of it all. Well…*spoiler alert* she’s also seriously burnt out.  I say all that to say this – there’s nothing wrong with trying to “have it all.” But prioritizing yourself, your happiness and well-being, is ultimately paramount. You can only give so much of yourself to your job or others before you literally run out, and that moment when you hit empty is often a jarring one. You eventually crash into the realization that you’re not physically or emotionally able to keep the juggling act going. So before you reach that place, stop whatever your doing and take some “me” time. And don’t feel guilty about it. You’ve earned this. seaglassinnbathroomseaglassinn
Hannah and I recently took a much needed girls’ weekend in beautiful Provincetown, where we stayed at the Seaglass Inn – a quaint hotel and resort just a short walk away from the city center or the ocean. After five years of school and new full time jobs we were so ready for a vacation. But we wanted to go somewhere that was both relaxing and had plenty of to do – so staying in Ptown was perfect. Our hotel had a gorgeous pool, complimentary breakfast, and a spa which definitely checked off the relaxation box. And the crisp white linens, dark wood furniture, and gorgeous bathroom (complete with my fave…subway tiles!) created a perfect oasis.

But perhaps what made Seaglass the perfect home away from home were the people. From Nadine, the owner, to Steve, the general manager, and Pat (a  fellow Patricia) we felt extremely welcomed and comfortable. Unlike being at a giant hotel you really feel an intimacy and homelike quality staying at an inn like Seaglass.

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So without further ado…

The TFC Recipe for the Ultimate Girls’ Weekend

1. Lounge by the pool

2. Wade in the ocean

3. Make friends with the locals

4. Run through sand dunes

5. Treat yourself to an extravagant dinner

6. Eat all of the oysters you can handle

7. Enjoy a wine tasting

8. Bond with your best girlfriends

9. Dance, laugh, and dance some more


Our Cape Favorites

Best Home Away from Home: The Seaglass Inn & Spa

Best Seafood: Moby Dick’s Restaurant

Best Winery: Truro Vineyards

Best Extravagant Dinner: Twenty Eight Atlantic

Love,

Love Hannah + Patricia, Blog Signature

 This post was created in collaboration with The Seaglass Inn & Spa

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