Sometimes I wonder what my life would look like right now if I stayed in law and stuck to my five year plan from 2011. I’d probably still be in San Francisco, maybe with a mortgage that would stretch my five year plan into a ten year plan. Before I left my job with the firm, I struggled with my inability to suck it up and work. It felt like a weakness. I knew that many of colleagues and friends from school did not derive happiness from their work either, so why did I feel like it was draining me, both physically and mentally?
It’s funny, a lot of my friends and family said I was so brave to leave law and my formal training for an unstable industry in which I have no formal education. But I really left because I was scared of what I might become if I stayed.
I remember thinking specifically that I never had a genuinely good “worst features” about me to say in an interview, and ironically, I’d just discovered it- I excel and flourish in work that I have the freedom to be creative in, I have to love the work, or I’ll fizzle out. Ironic because I’ll never need to interview again.
One of the things I love most about working in the creative industry is collaborating with other passionate people, especially people who enjoy the business aspect as much as I do. I’ve recently had the pleasure of meeting and collaborating with Jenny Wu of Good, Bad, & Fab from Los Angeles. Jenny is also a former attorney who sought creative pastures over the corporate life. During her time as a fashion attorney, Jenny founded a style blog as her creative outlet. Soon after, her blog grew and monetized, and Jenny chose to cultivate her personal brand over law. Finally, I found someone who truly understands my pursuit of happiness from my work! It’s a match made on Instagram!
I rarely look back at what I call my past life, and when I do, it’s only to see how far I’ve come. In hindsight, I see that my leap was a gamble, but in the moment, it was the only thing that made sense. I love my work, I love the people I’ve met, and I am thriving under the responsibility my clients have given me. And yes, I’d do it all over again.
Life is too short to not love what you do.
Here are some highlights from our San Francisco fashion collaboration. See more at Jenny’s blog!