Skip to Main Content
by Leah Thomas via Fairygodboss | April 29, 2019


field notes 2

Most professionals who've hit major success milestones before the age of 35 have made it a point to learn the below six lessons. And if you, too, are able to learn them now as opposed to later, you'll find that they'll yield some pretty impressive results.

1. It’s okay to ask for advice.

Sometimes we let our fear of looking unprepared or ill-informed keep us from asking for help. But the secret is out: more often than not, everyone else also has no idea what they're doing. So don't be afraid to ask for advice in the workplace. Search for a person you admire and ask for help.

2. Dedicate a certain amount of your week to alone time.

You're constantly doing things for others: your partner, your children, your siblings, and your boss. You deserve some “me” time. Dedicate a specific time during the week (or each day) to do what you want to do. If it becomes part of your routine, you're more likely to actually follow through and do it. Go for a run, go for a walk, practice yoga, listen to music, have dinner with a group of friends, catch up on your favorite show, order take-out and give yourself a facial, etc. Do only what you want to do. It will reenergize you.

3. Never stop learning.

Some people believe learning ends with school, which is just not true. It's important to continue to learn and grow. And this happens in all aspects of your life, not just at work. Never let your craving for knowledge die. And don’t be afraid to learn from others. They've gone through experiences you have not, which always brings results in you learning new lessons.

4. Leave your comfort zone.

While it can be easy and stress-free to stick to your normal activities, there's nothing like the feeling of doing something new and scary for the first time. Allow yourself to be uncomfortable. Being uncomfortable brings the growth and change that keeps your work and life exciting. And you’ll never know if you'll like something until you try it, or how far you can go until you push yourself.

5. If you feel stuck in a rut, it's up to you to get out.

Everyone has a bad day at work every once in a while, but if your bad days are outweighing the good, don’t force yourself to stay. If you're no longer feeling challenged, and you’ve lost that passion that brought you into the office every day to begin with, find that former passion elsewhere.

6. You can’t please everyone.

This is a lesson you might have to remind yourself of frequently in life. It can be human nature to try to make everyone around you happier, especially in the workplace, but that is just not possible. The most you can do is try your hardest, give your full effort to tasks, and be nice to those with whom you interact. Everything else is beyond your control.

A version of this post previously appeared on Fairygodboss, the largest career community that helps women get the inside scoop on pay, corporate culture, benefits, and work flexibility. Founded in 2015, Fairygodboss offers company ratings, job listings, discussion boards, and career advice.