Your Fired: What Getting Fired Taught Me About Success

I remember it like it was yesterday. It was my sophomore year in undergrad and I just landed my first internship with a very reputable PR/Advertising firm in the city.  It was an awesome opportunity to get my foot in the door and gain practical knowledge that I can use throughout my life, little did I know that the lessons that I was going to take away had more to do with life, responsibility and accepting fault than it had to do with public relations.

It was a month into my internship and things finally starting to get moving, I must admit I knew little about public relations prior to accepting the internship so the learning curve was heavy.  We were in the middle of planning an event and spring break/vacation was starting in a couple days.  Fast-forward to spring break, we had off for school and because my internship was tied to school I assumed that when we are off school we are off for interning. NOPE, that was not the case and next thing I knew I was getting fired for a no-call no show.  No more internship, no more learning PR and I officially started my path on learning some lessons on the path for success which are: 

  1. No excuses- There are no excuses in the real world. If you don’t do what you committed to do, especially in regards to professional commitments excuses will not get you far.  
  2. If you don’t know, ask- The first thing that I should’ve done was ask and get clarification on my schedule. I didn’t and made an assumption that ended in a negative result. It never hurts to ask questions and get clarity. Communication is always recommended.
  3. Don’t take things for granted- No matter what the position is that you are currently functioning in (internship, entry-level...etc.) never take the experiences that you are gaining for granted. There are lessons in everything, we just have to take the time to learn them. 
  4. Setbacks happen- As we continue to grow in our careers and in life, we will experience setbacks and that’s okay because with setbacks there’s always a comeback around the corner. Which leads me to my last point
  5. You will survive -I know whenever you are going through a season of “failure” or an experience that seems like you have ended your whole future you don’t always see the light at the end of the tunnel. But, guess what? The light is there and it is shining bright! You just have to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and keep it moving.

The thing is the path to success is not straight and narrow. It is has up's and downs, potholes and curves and sometimes we get lost but don’t give up, believe me it is all worth it!

The Importance of Having a Personal Mission Statement

“To use my gifts to inspire others to walk in their purpose so that they align their passions with their destiny” – Lachelle Binion

Often times when we think of mission statements we think of a written summary describes the values, beliefs and goals of what an organization seeks to accomplish. Organizations dedicate a lot of effort, time, and sometimes money to craft the “perfect” mission statement. But, how many of us understand the importance of having a personal mission statement?  In my view, having a personal mission statement is equally as important as crafting one for your organization.

Here’s why,

  • It forces you to align your life with your purpose-Your mission statement is a daily reminder of what you want to accomplish in life.
  • It gives you a path to clearly keep your vision before you-When you can visualize, you can conceptualize the road you want to embark on.
  • It defines who you are and how you want to live-Your statement is personal, it’s who you are and how you wan to live.
  • It inspires us to accomplish our goals-It keeps us focused on if we are achieving what we set forth.

Developing a personal mission statement isn’t as hard as some may think. Here are some tips and basic steps on how you can craft your personal mission statement:

  • Keep it simple- 3 to 5 sentences max. You don’t want to overwhelm yourself with a list of goals.  Your statement should be succinct and to the point.
  • Be positive– Focus on the inspiration you seek to gain or give in life. This is your It’s your daily purpose mantra-leave the negativity out.
  • Make it personal-Your personal statement should be about who you are internally
  • Make it actionable-Use action words, make it about what you want to accomplish in life and how or why you want to do it.

A few ways to get started it to create a list of words that you feel best describe you (you can even ask others to give you positive words that they would use to describe who you are). From that list narrow it down to three or four words and start to craft the statement.  A great formula is to start with is:

“To (enter what you want to become or do in life) + (why or how you want to do it)

Example: “To use my gifts of intelligence, charisma, and serial optimism (what she wants to do) to cultivate the self-worth and net-worth of women around the world (why she want to do it)” – Amanda Steinberg-Founder of the Dailyworth.com

Example: “To be a teacher (What she want to do). And to be known for inspiring my students to be more than they thought they could be. (Why she wants to do it)”- Oprah Winfrey, OWN

Example: “To have fun in my journey through life (what he wants to do) and learn from my mistakes (how he want to do it)” – Sir Richard Branson, Founder of The Virgin Group.

Finally, don’t get caught up in the details. Let this be something fun and inspiring and guiding principle for you.

How do you feel about personal mission statements? Does anyone else have a personal mission statement that they would like to share?