My Top 10

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It is hard for me to put into words just how inspiring, therapeutic, and incredibly comforting this past weekend with GLAMOUR’s Top 10 College Women was. In celebrating each other, and sharing our struggles, I can’t help but believe that we’ve forged friendships that will last a lifetime. And for that, I couldn’t be more grateful.

I have a post coming up about one of my favorite Glamour moments from last week, but till then I thought I’d leave you with these photos and a few of the big takeaways that some of the incredible women we got to meet left me with. I think they’re definitely worth the share :)

  1. IMG_2561Celebrate each other and share your struggles – All of us women talked quite a bit about how hard it is to balance
    confidence and humility and to share our accomplishments without seeming arrogant. In a conversation somewhere between Brooklyn and Midtown Manhattan this is what we all kept saying. In sharing our accomplishments, we can choose to celebrate each other. But when the spotlight shines down, we also have the choice to share our struggles. We have the chance to also make clear to those around us that success, however fleeting and wonderful, has been hard won and is rarely easy. As one of my friends put it, with Facebook and social media these days, it’s easy to see everyone’s “highlight reel.” It’s not so fun to share when you’re sick or hurt or upset about something. But that means that the slice of us that is out there on the internet never captures the full story — it’s a seemingly obvious truth, but one with implications that extend beyond us to the online viewers of our profiles. In a highlight reel of tweets and Facebook feeds and Instragram pictures, it’s hard to get across that even as things might be on the upswing sometimes, we’re still far from perfect. But this last part, well it’s just as important to share.
  2. “Timelines are bad for the soul.” (Colleen McGuinness, Writer of 30 Rock)
  3. “You are your vessel. It [Failure] can feel very personal for that very reason.”  (Danielle Brooks of Orange is the New Black.) For someone who internalizes, well everything, this piece of advice was something I needed to hear. A lot of the times when you put yourself out there– as an actress, as a musician, as an interview candidate– you are the product. When you are not chosen, it’s hard not to feel defeated. I’ve been thinking a lot about this these past few weeks. I’ve been stuck on this concept of things fitting together, much like twins might be expected to. Sometimes there are failures, but sometimes things also just don’t work out because they simply aren’t meant to be together. And that’s not failure. That’s a push in a new direction, the right direction personalized just for you. As one of my friends put it — “If you’re going down a path and you figure out it’s the wrong one, you just choose another.” Exactly.
  4. IMG_2563“Where you came from does not have to be where you’re going.” (Gina Keatley, the host and chef of Healthy Soul With Gina Keatley)
  5. “Be appropriate.” – Colleen McGuinness on what she has learned from Tina Fey, with whom she is currently working on a new pilot. When asked what she’d learned from Tina, Colleen said: “Be appropriate.” It seems simple but she pointed out that it’s hard for anyone out there to say anything bad about Tina Fey. The fact is, she’s always on point. Polite. On time. She addresses people as they should be addressed. It’s a tiny detail but one worth remembering in a world where social media and the internet seem to be breaking down institutions and traditional professional codes faster than time itself.
  6. Failure is the best tool you have because failure makes you angry. And anger makes you do things.
  7. “Go where it’s warm.” (Colleen McGuinness) I really liked this piece of advice. It’s the concept that you should go where you’ll find mentorship, support, and a friendly group of people to work with — not just to the place with the biggest name or the best salary.
  8. “Read books – none of that twitter stuff.” (Samantha Power to me during our phone interview)
  9. “It turns out the real world had a whole lot more learning opportunities for me than grad school.” (Samantha Power to me during our phone interview) If you’re contemplating graduate school, consider the real world first. What do you want to learn and where do you need to learn it? The real world might just hold your answers, and at a more affordable price tag too :)
  10. “Envy is judging someone else’s outsides against your insides – it is also the only one of the seven deadly sins that isn’t any fun.”  (Greta Gerwig)

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Thank you to Glamour Magazine, Editor-in-Chief Cindi Leive, Katie Sanders, and so many more for making all of this possible!

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