I quit my job without a job

Thursday, August 23, 2018

shot by @luxmondi

Everybody thought I was crazy - "daring" was the word they used. It didn't occur to me how risky it was to resign without a job.

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I decided to do a blog post on my current standing in my career because I haven't had a heart-to-heart in aeons.

shot on @adelia.lim and my acai date for Sperry Topsiders

Here's setting the premise because tons of people have absolutely no clue what I do for a living. Some think I'm still in school, some think I'm a full-time model, others probably strongly believe that I'm living a tai-tai life (... you could be right? ;)) To clear the air - I am a social media and marketing comms person in the fashion, beauty and wellness industries.

shot for @fashmob

Back Story - Why I Resigned

(It isn't as bad as it sounds, really)

I joined SkinnyMint @ Supernova exactly 1 year ago to manage its social media accounts. I subsequently moved to work as their marketing manager where I learned all about brand marketing to international markets. It was a trying time filled with ups and downs because the brand restructured twice in the year I was there. That was a lot of adapting to different working styles and team dynamics on my end but nevertheless, I can proudly say that I survived it and gained a hell lot outta it.

social content for SkinnyMint

At my 1 year mark, I swooped L, my manager, into the room and told her that I had something really important to discuss. I think she knew what it was. I wasn't planning to tender then and there but I had been so overwhelmed with negative emotions and feelings for too long that I knew I had to leave.

I had been working round the clock 24/7 of 365. On a 9 - 6pm weekday basis, I was working on SkinnyMint (of course, wholeheartedly). Any after hours or weekend business was left to either creating content for @manda.olivia or attending events. All during this time, my hard work paid off to see @skinnymintcom grow almost 30k followers (with paid marketing) and @manda.olivia grow 4.2k organically. But I was honestly pooped beyond words.

IG: @skinnymintcom
feeds from @manda.olivia and @skinnymintcom. 
i had to be absolutely bipolar when managing these 2 accounts, to be honest.

So yea, 12 July was the day I handed my resignation without another full-time job in the pipeline. I knew I needed a break. I was so suffocated, burnt out and creatively stifled that I was feeling miserable even thinking about my first love, Adobe Photoshop. (lol didn't see that coming did you. boyfriend probably pissed,)

I just... wanted to rest...

Lol, but even that was shortlived.

The Freelance Life

One thing I've learned about myself is that I have the occasional tendency to be an overachiever (pros and cons, really). Basically, I don't work well with the chill pill (tsk, tsk, amanda, amanda). Immediately after serving my tenure, I picked up freelance jobs...

It was 2 weeks into "freedom" and I had already unexpectedly picked up 4-5 freelance jobs. At this point in time, I was almost convinced that the freelance life was for me.

Firstly, because, it is actually possible to earn more from it than a full-time day job. Secondly, I love the time flexibility - but at the same time, fully grasping the concept that if I don't work, I don't get moleh. 

Despite all these considerations and the fact that almost everybody was encouraging me to own a content creation biz (aka be a #girlboss), I was still looking for a full-time job. Why? Someone once told me that you should always work for a boss in your 20s to learn as much as possible. You'd want to know how things actually run in a normal functioning company if you're planning to start a company of your own in the future - makes sense.

*Note: I know successful friends who are already running businesses at the age of 20 and I'm defo not dissing them with this mantra. I'm just saying that with my current knowledge and experience, I want to gain even more confidence before embarking on a girl boss journey. Knowledge, skills, and talent aren't the only determining factors for success after all.

Coming Soon...

I was in talks and interviewing with a couple of brands in the past few months. I finally received an official email job offer thanks to a recommendation from a lovely ex-colleague, V, from Supernova.

I am pretty excited about where I'm going because I really wanted to go back into retail. I also really wanted to work for a brand that understood the meaning of using social as a tool to spark the community because that's something I strongly believe in.

The brand that I'll be starting my full-time job at is lululemon. I'll be managing their social media accounts and I'm most excited because the brand pushes me to pursue my passion. Also, I honestly can't wait to wear yoga pants to work.

Thoughts about Uncertainty during Unemployment

All through this journey, I actually felt ashamed that I was "taking a break" like the rest of the "weak strawberry generation"; as told by the older gen. I even tried to keep it mum among my relatives because of the social stigma. #weak

But now that I've actually gone through it, I'm not sure why people are kicking a big fuss about it.

shoot with @hollyhoque

(1) What's wrong with taking some time out to realign your focus? Your 20s flash by at the speed of light. You barely have time to sit and reflect what your 5 or 10-year goals are.

(2) How does anyone actually have time to do their best for interviews if they're working through midnight on interview tests or stealing away for lunchtime interviews?

photo for @fashmob

There is nothing wrong with wanting job satisfaction, and if you need to take time to figure that out, then go for a yoga retreat, do what you love, take up internships, try anything and everything that brings you on the path to finding what you will be happy doing. *Note to self - remind future parent self to let kids be if they want to take a gap year before working. Also another side note: I also couldn't have done this without the support of my family and Dan. 

Outtakes from @alchemeskincare shoot

During my downtime, though unfortunately shortlived, I was able to:

  • Pick up at least 5 modeling gigs
  • Hone my videography and create 5-6 social videos
  • Shoot at least 40 flat lays
  • Finish reading 3 books

I would say I've accomplished what I set myself out to do... for now.

It's really all down to the individual's attitude - would you take this time to work on yourself? Or simply slack and hope for a rosy future? Food for thought.

Anyway, cheers! Going to switch my Yoda self off for awhile and enjoy the rest of the ride.
Will update soonest once I have more stories to tell you guys!


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