Passion into Purpose

I’ve been in a rut lately: no inspiration, no motivation, and lots of M&M’s. But with the change of the leaves and the holiday season upon me I can feel the spark coming back into life.

passion into purpose2A friend shared that quote with me a few weeks ago and it really struck a chord with me. A few days later I read this post by College Prepster and I knew this idea of passion and purpose was meant to be in my life right now.

I’ve always thought of dance as my passion. It gives me a thrill unlike anything else and it provides me with a sense of belonging. However, being realistic with my health, I know that my hopes of being a professional dancer are in my past.

Could this passion for dance lead me elsewhere? Is there a job out there perfect for me and my love for dance? Is it going to lead me to something else creative? There’s no way to know right now, but I feel like time will tell.

Have you turned a passion into something more?

Keep Dancing,

Cayla

101 in 1001

Today’s the day! I’m officially starting my ultimate “to-do” list. I have 1001 days to accomplish this list of 101 things.

101in1001

When I first saw Mackenzie Horan of Design Darling‘s list, I thought the start of senior year would be a perfect time to try this.

I encourage you to create your list and let me know when you do! [Beat me to it? I’d love to see a list you’re already working on!]

  1. GRADUATE!
  2. Find a job post-grad
  3. Move to a new town
  4. Have photography printed to hang
  5. Learn more about my camera
  6. Develop my personal brand
  7. Enter pictures into a photography contest
  8. Refine my style
  9. Cleanse my closet!
  10. Travel to Europe-already planned!
  11. Utilize career services
  12. Find a concentration for this blog
  13. Learn code
  14. Host a dinner party
  15. Go to a blogger convention
  16. Make blog friends
  17. Subscribe to  a magazine (it would save me so much money!)
  18. Keep an updated inspiration board
  19. Develop a morning routine
  20. Develop a workout routine
  21. Go to New York for at least 3 days
  22. Spend a day at a spa
  23. Become an active Tri Delta alum
  24. Get my hair professionally styled
  25. Learn how to do make-up beyond basics
  26. See at least 20 “must-see” movies
  27. Work reading into my daily routine
  28. Find a mentor
  29. Invest in (and learn) Photoshop
  30. Get 100 blog followers
  31. Splurge on a nice purse
  32. Find the perfect graduation dress
  33. Learn a language
  34. Consistently journal
  35. Buy 10 coffee table books
  36. Buy my domain name
  37. Get MARRIED!
  38. Write a letter at least once a week for 3 months
  39. Eat food from a  food truck
  40. See an outdoor movie
  41. Learn to ballroom dance
  42. Create an address book
  43. Attend a fashion week show
  44. Decorate with fresh flowers for 2 months
  45. Go to the ballet
  46. Set a budget and stick to it
  47. Get my boating license
  48. Attend Spoleto in Charleston
  49. Own an iPad
  50. Write a book
  51. Find a church to attend regularly post-grad
  52. Save $10 for every goal completed
  53. Donate $2 to St. Jude for every goal completed
  54. Go to the beach outside of SC
  55. See Wofford from the roof of Milliken
  56. See a musical on Broadway
  57. Visit 3 new states
  58. Make time to write every day for 1 month
  59. Go to the Grande Ole Opry with Christopher
  60. Visit 3 new museums
  61. Start an art collection (at least 3 pieces)
  62. Increase the variety of my iTunes music
  63. Master cooking 3 of my favorite meals: Chicken Pot Pie, Chicken Soup, and Country Fried Steak
  64. Take a Paint & Pour class
  65. Go sailing with Alex
  66. Learn calligraphy
  67. Unsubscribe from old email lists
  68. Go on a trip with Alex
  69. Learn (and use) a new word every day for 2 months
  70. See all of the movies nominated for best picture before award season
  71. Read at least 3 Jane Austen novels
  72. Go apple picking
  73. Read the WSJ every day for 1 month
  74. Invest in the stock market
  75. Keep a “line-a-day” journal every day for senior year
  76. Make a playlist of 101 of my favorite songs
  77. Make a list of the 50 quotes I find most inspiring
  78. Take a picture of every letter of the alphabet
  79. Quit using “like”-seriously a bad habit
  80. Memorize the president’s in order and 1 important fact about them
  81. Write a letter to myself to open on my wedding day
  82. Make a list of advice I wish I had been given about college for my cousins
  83. Write a personal manifesto
  84. Throw a 4th of July party
  85. Redesign my blog
  86. Put all of my pictures on an external hard drive
  87. Take a weekend trip
  88. Visit a winery
  89. Update my accessory selection (shoes, jewelry, purses)
  90. Go to a Bed & Breakfast
  91. Drink more water and no soda for 3 weeks straight
  92. Go to a Packers game with Dad
  93. Take at least 3 Alt classes
  94. Go to bed before 11 during the week for 2 weeks
  95. Work out with a personal trainer
  96. Learn more about fashion & interior design
  97. Utilize the public library
  98. Guest post on another blog
  99. Design & stick to an editorial calendar
  100. Go on a picnic with my own picnic basket and blanket
  101. Inspire someone else to make their own list

My finish date is May 30, 2016. This seems like far away, but I know it’s going to go fast!

Here’s to new goals!

Keep Dancing

Invest in What Inspires You!

This weeks inspiration comes with a lot of reflection. Looking back at how I’ve spent my time as well as looking forward to what I want to do once I graduate. Doing this has made me realize how important it will be for me to have a job that allows me to be creative, as well as one that continually inspires me, to do more and to be better.

What do you do to make sure that you are continually being inspired?

mumford1Keep Dancing,

Cayla

Closing Doors Open New Ones

Lately, life has been an uphill battle. Classes are harder than usual this semester, I’ve felt like a lot of opportunities have slipped away from me, and everyone seems to be obsessed with “what do you want to do after graduation.” Not knowing the answer to that last question has made things particularly uneasy. It’s been a stressful week. I’ve had this feeling of not being important. I want to leave a legacy wherever I go, but I feel like I have not found my way to do this and my senior year is quickly approaching.

However, suddenly today things have been looking up. I’ve had several professors say things to me that they will never understand how much those words meant. Their words of encouragement were exactly what I needed to hear at a time when I’m feeling so small.

An opportunity (not saying what, yet) also presented itself this afternoon. I have never leapt so quickly at something in my life. I don’t want to jinx it and I don’t know exactly what it will entail yet, but I feel like it might give me a sense of direction. I’m very excited about this opportunity and can’t wait to see where this takes my journey. More to come once I know!

Keep Dancing,

Cayla

Here’s to the Future…

This weekend has been one of many thoughts and preparation for the future. The most important was “Internships: The Path to Your Future.” This was an event hosted for juniors by career services and sponsored by Michael Brown. Mr. Brown is a Wofford alumnus and a major donor to the school. He believes that it is the alumni’s duty to give back to Wofford so that the upcoming students may be successful as well.

During the event we met with young alumni who shared their stories of rejection and success that they have experienced since graduating. These are some of my favorite tips that I picked up from listening to the stories:

  • It’s important to make relationships with career services, your professors, and the administration. They will be the ones writing recommendation letters and you never know who they may know.
  • Start looking for jobs now! This means jobs for 2014, after graduation. This will give you time to explore options, get rejected, and be ahead of the game. Just because Wofford starts school later doesn’t mean that businesses ask for applications later. Most applications will be due by the beginning of September.
  • With that in mind, it’s also important to make sure that you stop on top of people when applying for jobs. Call, email, write letters. Do whatever it takes to get that job, even if it feels uncomfortable for you.
  • Keep relationships with people you meet at Wofford, other internships, business meetings, anywhere you are. You never know who these people might know, which could help for applying for jobs.
  • You should treat the job search like a class. It requires that much time, at least an hour a day. This could be making phone calls or sending emails to keep in touch with connections or actually applying for jobs.
  • After you meet with someone, write them a thank you note. This should be handwritten and should go out as soon as possible after the meeting. This goes for writing recommendations too. Everyone may not appreciate it in the same way, but you never know who it may mean the world to.
  • You should always carry yourself professionally, even around friends. They may know someone hiring, but if you are not professional they may not recommend you because they don’t want it to reflect badly of them.
  • Have high expectations for your life. If your expectations aren’t high then you won’t get the better jobs.

During the meetings we also wrote down the three things that are most important to us in our future career. My three were:

  1. Giving back to the community-I want to feel like my work means something. I want to be able to help others in the same way that other people have been able to help me.
  2. Being able to share my store-I believe that I’ve had a lot of setbacks in my life, but I’ve been able to rise above those and use them to help others and I want to continue doing that.
  3. NO regrets! Be happy!-This is probably the most important thing. This is how I make my major life decisions. If I don’t do this/If I do this, am I going to regret it later in life? It may make me uncomfortable and seem difficult now, but in the long run I want to do what’s best for me.

Some of the other ideas that people shared were: working at a place that values their employees, being able to continue to learn, wanting a constant challenge-not the same routine every day, and being able to have family time.

When we came back together, Mr. Brown emphasized that we are the only person that can decide if we’re successful or not. He told us to write down our three requirements and the date and keep them in our wallet. We are the only ones that can make sure these three things are part of our career. He told us that if we got nothing else out of the evening then we needed to know 3 things:

  1. You have to learn to hustle. The people hiring us are getting older and looking for someone who is young and can do the job that they used to do.
  2. You need to always want to better yourself. This could be reading, meeting people, placing yourself in uncomfortable situations, or any number of others, but it is important to continually become a greater person.
  3. When told no, because it will happen, you need to figure out another way to approach the situation and go at it again. It’s all about how you react to that no.

We were also able to hear from Danny Morrison, the President of the Carolina Panthers, who is also a Wofford alumnus. He shared both his story and the story of Jerry Richardson, the owner of the Carolina Panthers and also a Wofford alumnus. Mr. Morrison shared with us the 5 core values of Mr. Richardson.

  1. Hard Work
  2. Harmony
  3. Teamwork
  4. Listen
  5. Respect

Mr. Morrison also shared with us his biggest pet peeve: Too many people look for the next job. He says to do the job you have and the rest will take care of itself. This goes in hand with your career. If you are enjoying what you’re doing then you should not need to look for the next job. Mr. Morrison stressed that there is no roadmap to your career, you need to be able to connect the dots and see the relationship among things and you will figure out where you’re supposed to be.

I’m now following up the very motivational evening with my thank you notes and my piece of paper for my wallet. I’m still not sure whether this overwhelmed me more about my future or just made me more motivated. Either way I’m excited for what the future holds and know that I”m the only one responsible for how it turns out.

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Until next time,

Cayla