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having my cake and eating it too

regular readers will know about my crazy roller-coaster ride with employment in the last 12 months:

• getting a job as a kitchen hand in london after a PSFK conference by just walking in off the street. only to walk out by not turning up one day - stressed out and seriously ill.

rejected from a job in a high-volume copy shop/print room after the third interview, because i wasn't M-----t material. (ie, I wasn't from either financial or legal fraternity aristocracy.)

• working over summer at the sydney myer music bowl and getting to see jon bon jovi, cypress hill and kanye west!

• landing a fab job at a craft and design organisation, doing what i love, then having it become something that i didn't love anymore.

• giving up full-time employment to go back to uni, letting go of a 'real' salary in return for some 'real' time whilst getting a job in an international aid organisation, within the design and architecture fields.

• and the clincher for 'oh my god, can my work life get any more operatic?', i went looking for a bit of contract work, just to get a bit of money happening in between gigs. the lovely ms g at the recruitment agency rang me and told me about this short term thing which was right up my alley: arts, culture, environmental/social issues and advertising (ok, so i'm not quite a cliche, yet). i went along, thinking it would be just a nice place to spend some time, earn some money.

two weeks later, it's a life-long love affair and we're vowing to stay in touch. all of them were on my wavelength - we talked structure, the value of creative thinking when developing strategy, the importance of sticking to your principles and the art of staying true to who you are as a person and as a company (made up of people). bliss, i tell you, bliss!

that is the bit about life that i find absolutely amazing and gets me EVERY time - you find it when you're not looking. in fact, hanging out with the kids at midnightsky* not only restored my faith in the gloriousness of life's twists and turns, but restored my faith in the power of authenticity, self-belief and well-aimed business strategy. i have also learned a whole lot about value from these guys. namely that i undervalue myself ALL THE TIME! i knew this already, but this time i saw it with fresh eyes and saw, in practice, that when you value yourself highly and know thyself absolutely (both financially and emotionally), it is reciprocated.

i know, this sounds like something Agony Aunt would love, but it has been quite a profound experience and one that i think marks the passing of age, actually. i don't know if i could have had this kind of experience 5 or 10 years ago (fortunately, or unfortunately).

perhaps this was just a long-winded story filed under 'to thine own self be true'.

* actually, for any of you strategy/planning peeps out there, the midnight sky crew are looking for team mates. go and talk to them, they're amazing.

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At 22 July, 2008 01:42, Blogger Age said...


It's so weird to hear you speak about this place Lauren, both here and in emails... It really sounds like the kind of place I want to someday end up at, once I feel my "stint" at *ahem* has reached it's inevitable end.

I'm glad it's restored some faith.

At 22 July, 2008 08:31, Anonymous Angus said...

Isn't it lovely when you feel as though you belong?

At 22 July, 2008 11:19, Anonymous Seb said...

Omi, you're great. Got your letter-thingy yesterday. It's bloody tops. The clay scones reminded me a bit of the Fischli&Weiss exhibition. Maybe I will place them on a pile as well, with as sign saying something like "The mud monster is having a sweet breakfast". Listening to your mixes right now. Very cool. And the thing made me smile. Because you burnt 70 MB on a DVD and forgot about that only you can open the stuff you bought at iTunes. But that makes it even more gorgeous. I love it. You'll get some new stuff from me soon.

And now in response to your post: I am mighty proud of you. Not in a little brother way proud but in a way of someone who looks up to you. It's very brave to always follow your own principles. And it's a thing not very common anymore. I'm very happy that you've found a place that will let your talent and way of thinking flourish. Maybe it will encourage others (hopefully me) to just follow their dreams and make them come true. It's a thing I truely believe in, that in the end good always wins...

At 22 July, 2008 13:38, Blogger lauren said...

age - weird? in a good way, i hope. like you said - absolutely perfect for me. i had a feeling you might dig them - who knows what happens around the corner hey..

angus - absolutely. and it's more than belong. i can feel belonging in places that aren't necessarily 'right'. but this had hallmarks of belonging and right. do i even make sense? too abstract?

seb - if i can encourage you in any way, then i will be a happy omi. and it's true - 'good' always wins, if you let it. that's why i got the damn tattoo, ya know.

At 24 July, 2008 20:10, Blogger Niko H (nom du guerre) said...

bit late to the party, but glad to see you found a place that suits u..

when I grow up and out of love with money, clothes, h@#s, I could do much much worse than follow your lead,

anyways...congrats a mili


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