I remember exactly how it happened. It was the day after Valentine’s Day, and I was sitting in the library writing a five-page research paper. I was thinking about how I was supposed to remain motivated and positive in life, and then it hit me. How can I find a way to share my lessons with others, and learn about mistakes other people have made as well? I looked down at my laptop and there it was–plain as day–my Twitter account. Needless to say, that’s how I started @LifeLessonLearn.
Everyone makes mistakes in life, what’s important is that you learn from each lesson. The purpose of my second Twitter account is for me to share the beauty in learning from each trial and tribulation we face in life. Trust me, I personally know that making mistakes isn’t easy. Luckily, you come out of each situation a stronger, more dedicated individual, and you are more than willing to share with others what you learned,and how they can avoid your same mistake.
Here are just a few of the tweets on the timeline of @LifeLessonLearn:
So go ahead, share your life lessons learned. What did you learn today? What did a disappoinment, death, mistake, or heartbreak teach you? Share it with the world via Twitter. By simply tweeting, you could be helping someone else get through a challenge in their life.
Here’s the bottom-line: What good is a life lesson learned if you don’t share it with someone else? Follow @LifeLessonLearn NOW.
If you haven’t heard by now, my full name and quote is on page 30 of this month’s issue of ESSENCE magazine. Please pick up an April edition when you get the chance. In celebration of their 40th anniversary, ESSENCE Magazine asked readers to share what ESSENCE has meant to them, so I did. Click here to read my full story. They only used a snippet of my story, but I am so blessed to have my name and thoughts published in the magazine of my dreams.
To my friends and family: Thank you for the constant support and encouragement! I’M ON MY WAY TO BIG THINGS!
Do whatever you can to contribute to the recovery of Haiti during this difficult time. Everyone can do their part by either contributing monetary donations or clothing donations. If you don’t have much to give, just take the time out of your day to say a quick prayer for those who are in danger, deceased, or mourning the loss of a loved one. We’ve all seen the news and heard the radio announcements, but rather than discussing what needs to be done, we should be proactive and make a difference. Haiti needs us. The time is now. God Bless, Haiti.
“To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world”
Photography courtesy of Ben Twingley, firstname.lastname@example.org
It is with great pleasure that I can finally announce that I am featured in the February 2010 issue of Bella Magazine. I am featured on the cover, as well as the inside fashion spread.
Special thanks to the Pensacola News Journal and the Bella Magazine staff for giving me this opportunity. None of this would be possible without Ms. Cindy Hall (Bella Editor), Ms. Tracee Neese (Bella Designer), Ms. Wendy Campbell (Bella Contributing Writer), and Mr. Ben Twingley (Photographer).
If you live in the Pensacola, FL area, please pick up a free copy. For more information on Bella Magazine, visit www.bellamagazine.com
To read the full fashion article for February titled “Red for Romance” click here. There is even a small section featuring myself. Enjoy!
I had an epiphany the other day. If someone wanted to follow me, not just on Twitter, but wanted to literally “follow” my every move in real life, I make it quite easy for them to do so through my tweets that I post everyday.
Take a minute to stop and think about all the personal information that we thoughtlessly share through our tweets. Through Foursquare, Twitpics, and other Twitter features, we give specific details about our current location to complete strangers in 140 characters or less.
With that said, I must say, be extremely careful what you tweet.
Social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter allow us to sometimes share TOO MUCH information with the world. Because of Twitter’s instantaneous tweet system, and second-by-second tweet feed, this makes it the ideal place for stalkers and weirdos to gather information about a person without even having to look hard for it. Once again, be extremely careful what you share through your tweets.
I have to be fair and practice what I preach. I’m guilty of sharing too much information as well. Some of my tweets that provided too much information have included, but are not limited too:
- “It’s official, I hate ProCopy on Fowler Ave.” (Bad idea to inform my followers of my EXACT location)
- “It’s such a beautiful day outside, and I will be studying in the library for the next 10 hours.” (Extremely bad idea to let my followers know the exact amount of time I will be at a certain location.)
Please keep tweets like these in mind before tweeting something too specific. Twitter features such as Foursquare and ÜberTwitter allow individuals to update their exact location from their mobile device. Long gone are the days where we only had an idea of the area where someone is, with modern technology nowadays, we know exactly where they are via Google maps and other high-tech atlases.
With most people having over 300 followers, there is little to no chance that you know each of your followers personally. To avoid a stalker situation, either place a lock on your Twitter profile that requires you to approve each follower, or be very vague and general in your tweets.
Twitpics allow followers to see exactly what we look like at any given time. For example, post a twitpic of yourself or friends at a party, a restaurant, or a concert, and any follower, or better yet any stalker, will be able to determine what you look like amongst the crowd. Scary, right? Right.
The moral of this story is simple. Although Twitter is the perfect venue to network and share our innermost thoughts and feelings, be careful. Be mindful of the 400+ followers that may be following and watching your tweets closer than you think. You can still be specific yet general in your tweets. Don’t give more information than needed.
Be mindful of the Dangers of the Twitterverse: Watch what you tweet!
With the economy in such great shape that it’s in, and the job market in a frenzy, my main concern is how will I prepare for a career in public relations. Or better yet, what is “PReparation for PR”?
Is it only internships and industry research? Or is it blogging and freelance writing? At this point, I can only go by what my professors and other professional tell me to do. But throughout my three years as a PR student at USF, I’ve learned a few things on my own that will help anyone start along their way.
ATTEND CONFERENCE! First and foremost, I must say that one of the things that has prepared me the most is attending public relations conferences. Last year, I attended the 2008 PRSSA (Public Relations Student Society of America) National Conference in Detroit. This coming November, I will be traveling to San Diego, California for the 2009 PRSSA National Conference.
It’s a great way to further explore the field of public relations. The workshops and seminars often touch on subjects that your classes and professors tend to skip. My advice is to find the workshops that most interest you, and then attend them and be attentive. Conference is your week to learn more about PR, but also more about yourself, what you love, and what you see yourself doing in the future. It helps that the PRSA (parent organization of PRSSA) conference is going on simultaneously. Therefore, you will also be surrounded with several successful practitioners in addition to several students with your same passion for public relations.
If you want to dive in head first, I suggest you sign up today for this year’s PRSSA National Conference in San Diego, California. I’ll see you there!
“NETWORK YOUR FACE OFF!” A good friend of mine, Sydney Owen, who is also an up and coming young PR professional at Weber Shandwick in Chicago, coined the phrase “network your face off”. I can’t express how important it is to meet people from all aspects of life, and all facets of the industry. Most of the jobs and internships that I have gotten was simply because I literally networked my way there, by meeting people and leaving an impact on them. And don’t be shy, exchange numbers, e-mail, Twitter, etc. Sadly enough, most often in life it’s not WHAT you know, but WHO you know.
For some great information on how to “network your face off”, please read Sydney’s post here.
GET INVOLVED! It’s as simple as that, just get involved in PR every single chance you get. Get involved at your job, in your organizations, at your church, or even at home.
On the job, ask your supervisor what projects and initiatives you can take on that involve enhancing your communication skills. You’d be surprise how much you learn, and how impressed your boss will be.
In your clubs and organizations, run for the position of Public Relations Officer, Marketing Manager, or Director of Internal Communications during election seasons. When I served as the Editor-in-Chief and Newsletter Chair for two organizations, I got the opportunity to enhance my design skills and produce visual materials to be used in my portfolio. Producing two publications for two different clubs is a little much, but I’m sure you get the picture.
At home, take on projects that force you to apply the concepts that you are learning in the classroom. I created a blog for my mother’s entrepreneurial club, designed logos, and drafted newsletters as well. I got to practice what I was learning in my PR courses, and my mom got free services out of it as well. I guess you could say that my mother served as my very first client!
While I’m no expert (yet), I know that these things will help tremendously as you start along your journey as a practitioner. Amongst everything though, one thing is clear–you must be ready for anything that the industry will throw your way. The industry is constantly evolving and changing, so whatever is hot today–may be gone tomorrow; whatever is impressive today–might be medicore in days to come.
Please feel free to comment on this post and share any advice or experiences that you have learned while preparing for a career in public relations. However, I have one rule though–come PRepared!
For as long as I can remember I’ve always been accustomed to routines.
I always caught the school bus at 8 am sharp, went to cheerleading practice at 3:30 pm, waited for mom to pick me up at 5:30 pm, ate dinner around 7 pm, started my homework at 8 pm and went to bed around 10 pm. Always. Day in, and day out. I followed roughly the same routine for about 8 years.
To this day I still follow a strict regime. I go to work around the same time each week, do homework the same days each week, and so on and so forth. I’ve come to realize that I find comfort in routines, structured schedules and habits.
I take great pride in always being two steps ahead of myself, knowing what the next move is that I’m going to make, setting goals and aspirations for the next three to four years, and always planning and preparing.
I am eight months away from graduating from college. Meaning, eight months away from the “real world”. Eight months from moving away from a place I’ve called home for the past four years. Needless to say, it’ll be eight months of uncertainty.
Although I do have goals for myself and my career path, I don’t have any set plans, no idea of where I’ll end up, no idea of what I’ll be doing. All this is extremely frightening for someone who is a slave to structure, organization, and agendas. This is coming from someone who has always relied on plans set far in advance.
The question I get lately is, “What are you doing after college?” “Where are you moving to?” “Who will you be working for?” Questions that even I don’t know the answer to. It makes me wonder…
Will I be in Los Angeles? New York? Orlando? Atlanta?
Will I be practicing non-profit PR? Agency PR? Minority marketing?
I hope to use this personal website/online portfolio to document my journey to “adult life”. Watch closely as I share my fears, goals, aspirations, and poetry. Watch as I share my mistakes, improve my writing skills, and celebrate my successes. By the end of this journey I hope to have grown into a prepared pre-professional.
Lately I’ve found myself visualizing where I see myself next year. Visualizing and believing in my hopes and dreams. Although my exact plans are unclear, I am sure of a few things.
I visualize myself living somewhere that is beneficial for both myself and my career.
I visualize myself practicing public relations, advertising, and/or marketing. (I also visualize myself being very good at it, too!)
And most importantly, I visualize myself being happy.
I’ve learned a few things about myself these past couple months. I’ve learned that it’s OK not to have a master plan for the next couple years. I learned that it’s OK not to know what step to take next. Shoot, it’s even OK not to know anything at all.
I will continue to visualize myself making an impact in my career. It’s true what they say, “what you visualize, you can materialize”. The more I believe, the more likely it is that’ll happen.
Inspirational Quote of the Day: “It’s not necessary to see the entire staircase, as long as you take the first step”- Unknown
I’m excited to see what the future holds for me.