We are all a little crazy and we all need therapy

We are all crazy and we need therapyI’m staring at my computer screen and my mouth is open, a cry of protest escapes from my lips.

Everyone turns to look at me and I’m like, “What is wrong with these people! Every time, dumb questions!”

That’s how most of my days go. Just when I was starting to have faith in the human race, I meet a new set of people – the fans on brand pages.

Let me introduce myself. My name is J. K. Rolling, and I’m an online community manager at a digital media agency. Don’t get confused; I basically have to keep people engaged on social media for brands and write content that I believe they will like.

I love what I do, but some of these dedicated fans make it a point of duty to make sure I go home frustrated every day.

I will never forget the day someone asked me whether to use a plastic cup or a glass for a certain drink.

“No, drink it in a calabash,” I responded – but only in my head.

Another annoying thing these people do is enter my messages and say hi. When I ask how I can help them, they tell me they just want to say hi to the admin. If only they knew how much work I had to do, they would leave me alone. The most annoying one was when I had to answer the same question 5 times in the same post. Do they have secret meetings and decide they are going to frustrate me?

Lucky for me, I work with a great team. We laugh about these things and see the humour in it. They are the ones who keep me from going crazy: They are my therapists.

You guys reading this may not have to deal with annoying social media fans, but I’m sure there’s something that gets you frustrated and angry at work. What I’ve learnt in this process is that not everything is worth getting angry over. Sometimes, just talking about it with your colleagues could give you a fresh perspective on these issues, or make you laugh about it. Life is too short to stay angry; we’re all a little crazy, anyway.

 

No Degree? Don’t Apologize

No Degree, Dont Apologize.pngYes, you heard me!

There’s more to education than a degree. There’s more to learning than the four walls of a school. The pages of history are filled with successful people who dropped out of school, and I have learnt that academic validation does not birth life validation.

Still not convinced? Here are a few reasons why you don’t need to apologise for not having a degree:

  1. Education literally means “learning.” Which is ironic because there are many people who go through the entire process of school and learn nothing. Many people are pressured into studying degrees they have no passion for, and in the end they graduate, dump their certificates and go off into jobs they weren’t academically qualified for.
  2. The world has evolved. You do not need a degree to be on social media, for instance, and there are many similar financial opportunities around us today. You define your own success, degree or no degree. As they say, if you are born poor, it’s not your fault, but if you die poor, you are responsible.
  3. That said, if you do not have a degree, you’ve offended no one, however, you would offend yourself and your future if you do not educate yourself and equip yourself with relevant knowledge. You can gain direction and be who you want to be without conforming to societal standards; identify your strengths and surround yourself with people you can learn from. You actually have an advantage, because you do not have to waste countless hours or years studying things that may turn out irrelevant.

Why am I writing about this?

Because dropouts taught me. 3 “idiots” inspired me. Steve Jobs inspired me. And, today, I am good at my job. I learned more from the dropouts than the degree-holders. They put in their best and give it their all. (A great book to read on this topic is: A students work for C students and B students for the Government, by Robert Kiyosaki.)

No beef against degree holders, but don’t let your degree status limit you. Whether you are a great student or a dropout, life does not care unless you have relevant success to show for it. Your degrees are of no value if you cannot defend it, and when you can deliver, no one cares about your degree.

My Boss Happened To Me

af

 

I started out with lots of energy and enthusiasm. As boring as the JD (Job Description) sounded on paper – Admin/PA – the job was challenging and filled with opportunities to grow beyond the current role into a career path I truly wanted – Marketing Communications. My colleagues were bright and dynamic young people with tons of ideas and we could discuss anything and see it come alive. It felt like an enchanting fairytale that held new and exciting surprises for me. I looked forward to our Monday meetings, as they were always fun and engaging.

For someone who had never worked as a PA, with very little administrative skills, I was doing amazingly well (Google was, and still is, my best friend). My boss was a public figure, so my work extended beyond the office. She was involved in speaking engagements, radio and TV shows, and I loved the fact that I could move around. She was hardworking, passionate about her career, could juggle a million things at once (ok, that’s exaggerating it) and I really admired her work ethic. She always said that a woman’s life was all about balance and being able to connect her world in a way that allowed her to find both peace and sanity in it.

Soon, I began to have more responsibilities and I took each one head-on, loving the challenges buried in each of them and being able to find solutions. With each new challenge, my boss would say, “There’s nothing you can’t do if you put your mind into it.” I became a Project Manager overseeing a new office site, a part-time accountant and then moved to my favourite area, Content.

Fast-forward a couple of months later, the marketing team seemed to have hit a roadblock as to how to carry out a certain campaign. My boss wanted fresh perspectives and asked if I wanted to assist the marketing team. We all sat, brainstormed ideas and found new ways to tackle the plan. It felt exciting, fulfilling. The brainstorming sessions made me feel alive. Something in me was awakened; even my colleagues seemed to notice too.  Over time, I started getting more involved in regular brainstorming sessions and client meetings. My interest was piqued as I reviewed content and actively participated in strategy sessions. Soon, I approached the company to review my JD to marketing. Sadly, I couldn’t at the time because there was no vacancy in the marketing department, but I was given liberty to stay involved with them.

One fateful day, one of my colleagues, Tunde, approached me and asked if I had ever considered a career in marketing communications. Of course!  I had always wanted to but didn’t know where to begin. He told me about Orange Academy and I got very interested.

I signed up for Orange Academy and discovered a world of possibilities, and I was introduced to the world of digital marketing. Digital marketing gave me an entirely different perspective in the world of communications and its ability to reach millions with a few words or images. Armed with this insight, I made a decision to pursue it head on.  I spoke with my boss and told her of my plans. She had mixed feelings but was happy I had found something I was truly passionate about, based on our frequent discussions.  I resigned from that job and began my journey into Digital marketing.

Even though I started my career in a field I knew very little about, working with her helped me discover and focus on what I truly love to do. I had thought I had my entire life figured out, but when my employer happened to me and challenged my abilities, it changed me forever.

If you’re stuck in a role that seems completely unrelated to your passion or talent, don’t be discouraged! Just stay focused and keep working hard; you never know what life-changing opportunities may come your way. *wink!