As work life continues, I am continually amazed by how my previous experiences inform my present activities.
Taking the example of this blog, the simple act of writing and having an address on the Internet has taught me many things that I continue to use at work today.
- I know about Omniture tracking and web analytics because I use Google Analytics to track my site statistics.
- I know about Search because I need to write with Search Engine Optimisation in mind to make sure that my content reaches out to the right people
- I know about display banner advertising because I am a publisher that allows Google ads on my blog
- I know about the importance of mobile optimisation because Google penalises me for not having a site that is mobile-friendly
- I know about Social Media because I used it to reach a bigger base for my articles. I also know what I love sharing and what flies past my head
- And many, many more…
What is interesting and amazing to me is that I did not set out to learn these things. They just sort of came with the territory. I’m sure many professional bloggers out there can attest to this.
Why am I writing about this?
That’s because I want you to know how important it is to look outside your immediate job scope and work environment for inspiration, and how important it is to be doing things you love outside of the corporate routine.
I am saying this to myself as much as to you.
For the longest time, I practised a form of self-censorship by keeping silent here or on social media. I felt that I was still learning on the job, and everyone seems to be more well-versed at their areas of expertise than me. What can a fresh graduate possibly contribute that is of value to well-worn marketing combatants? What’s more, the routine and longer time at work meant that less time could be spent on mulling things over and forming concrete thoughts around them.
In time, I developed a writer’s block and I could be sitting in front of the computer for hours with no words flowing. The writing then stopped altogether.
I am writing this to remind myself that I extend beyond the workplace. If you are working now as well, remember that your dream doesn’t have to be your work. Marketing is my dream and also my job, but it doesn’t mean that it is confined to that. Inspiration abounds when you have the time to look for it. Challenge yourself to do better, to do different, to think of what you can do over and above what you are already doing. Contrary to popular belief, you might find yourself loving your job more instead of feeling bogged down.
As for me, I continue to learn at work. I am thankful for the opportunity, and heartened by the instances where my previous experiences have come in handy. That’s how I know I am in the right place, and that I still have something to contribute 🙂 So let’s all continue to treat our lives as great experiments, and live and learn!