The Young Professional’s Committee for New York Women in Communications hosted it’s “New Year, New You” event at the Gadner in New York City on January 25th. The speaker was Ann Shoket, former editor-in-chief of Seventeen Magazine and author of the upcoming book “The Big Life.” Ann provided great advice from career to relationships.
Work & Life Balance
Ann advices young professional women to not be entirely consumed about the work/life balance. She said that most millennial women should not spend time worrying about how they will balance their lives five years from now. What’s most important is putting your best self out into the world right now.
Replace Passion with Meaning
I’ve written about finding ways to honor your passions and why it matters. However, Ann advises that finding your passion should not be the goal. The goal should be to focus on what gives you meaning. She said she had always felt a spark when it came to talking to young people about their careers. That is what led her to continue doing the work in her career. Her following that spark that fulfills her.
Ann states that passion is ultimately trial and error. As you go through your career, the process leads to an understanding of how to move forward. She adds that when trying to figure out the dream of the life you want, you can ask yourself what the sixteen-year-old version of you wanted and honor that.
Ann says having a side project is a way of honoring the dream. That having side projects enable you to be your own boss. Your side projects could also lead to adventures and possibilities you didn’t expect. She referenced a moment when she interviewed Barbara Walters about what she knows now that she wished she knew then. Barbara’s response was that you have no idea the adventures that life has in store for you. The ability of things to change in your life.
Finding the Right Partner
When it comes to relationships and finding the person that’s right for you, Ann states below:
“When you discuss what matters most, do they get excited about what you care about? because you want someone who thinks what you care about is awesome.”
She adds that you should be open to the unexpected, to know that it takes a while to find the person that is right for you. That as you meet and date others, you figure out the qualities that you want in a partner. She says that you should always make the decision based on what truly feels right to you.
What’s your take on Ann’s advice on career and relationships?