If you need some inspiration, and even a bit of a cry on Day 36 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, this University of Phoenix (controversy over the online school aside) commercial captures the “We can do it!” spirit. As a single mom of a toddler and preschooler a decade ago, I was working my way up out of a job that was a dead end and into one that turned into a dream job. From pre-school teacher knee deep in poopy mess all day (my Pre-K students hadn’t all mastered toilet training) yet barely able to afford Pull Ups for my own toddler, to a Center Director with a decent salary, plus – get this – 90% off of tuition for my kiddos. That alone equalled well over $20K in savings! An unexpected bonus was, the experience at KinderCare enabled me to transition into other roles like Training Consultant and then Leadership Coach. Those were some of the best years with my children and I fully understand how rare my situation and how blessed I was to be able to drop my children off at school and then have our center van pick them up. I could see them pull up and got to greet them as they entered the building straight into my office – almost as good as being at home for me. That little guy in the video reminds me of my Levi and those animated kids could be mine – down to the age difference and obvious bond between them and their mom. We were the Three Musketeers. My only regret about that special time was not taking advantage of the tuition reimbursement offered by what was and still is the largest corporate child care provider in the world.
Fast forward a decade and I do have that Master’s degree. Like Cindy, the animated character in the commercial, I wanted more. Though not real, her portrayal of the struggle and elation we women face when we want something so badly we sacrifice big time to attain it and are then rewarded with an even bigger pay off when we achieve it is real. When we do it. Because most of us do want more – not necessarily money, though there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be well compensated (Maybe at the rate of our male counterparts? Imagine that!). More often though, we want more alignment with our values and strengths, or more of a challenge, or more appreciation. More meaning and fulfillment.
I wanted all of the above. For myself and to model pursuing what seemed like an elusive dream in front of my children. Then one day, after twenty years of talking about going back to school, I wrote a set of SMART goals (specific, measurable, actionable, realistic, and timed) and obtained an advanced degree within a year and a half of doing so. All that said, this post isn’t about more education – unless that’s what you want (or need). This is about whatever you’ve wanted to do in your personal and/or professional life but haven’t pulled the trigger on for whatever reason. Trying online dating. Taking that Excel class you could use to beef up your skills (Yuk!), going for that promotion, making that job or career switch, or even checking out that church you’ve felt compelled to visit.
Go go for it! Sooner rather than later. Because we Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose soul sisters not only can do it, we will!