Workaholic Bag — Corporate Edition!

You've landed your dream job. Congrats! Now you're preparing for your first day and slowly checking things off your list... Suit? Check. Purse? Eh...  Maybe your purse might not be big enough to carry your things for work. But at the same time you don't want to wear a Jansport or North Face backpack with your suit. Hm... What to do? I feel you... which is why I decided to write this post! (To be honest, I'm also on the hunt for the perfect "corporate" bag...)

To view the bags online, simply click on the pictures!

Vera Bradley Morgan Tote
So I had no idea Vera Bradley came out with leather bags until I saw my friend carry this gorgeous bag. She told me she'd bought it for interviews, and honestly, I can't think of a classier bag for a job interview. It is big enough to fit a MacBook Pro and papers! The best part is that it looks like it's worth a lot more than it is!

Cambridge Satchels

My personal thoughts on Cambridge satchels:
Pros: They are very cute. Because it is such a classic style, it would match perfectly with almost any preppy or business casual outfit.
Cons: They are very small! My mentor has one, and I remember her telling me that she can't fit much else if she has her 13' MacBook Air inside. Always make sure to check the size of the bag!

Tumi is pricier than the bags listed above, but I think the quality and practicality of these bags justify the price! They will make you look chic, whether you are wearing a suit or not! Perfect for work and business trips.

What is your go-to professional bag? I hope you found this list helpful!

With love,

The Complexity of Failure

We've all read those stories where someone was really passionate about reaching a specific dream he had, but he kept failing. Eventually, he reached his goal. Happy ending. The moral of these stories is to never give up if you're passionate about something.

However, I find the concept of failure to be really complex, because we never know if we should keep trying or walk away. I don't think these two are necessarily mutually exclusive. Walking away and reverting your focus in a different direction can be a way of trying harder. Trying hard in terms of what, though? Your specific goal may be different, but your general goal is still personal satisfaction.

I think Jack Ma, the founder and CEO of Alibaba, is a great example of being persistent yet realistic: knowing when to redirect your focus via different avenues when things don't work out.

I recently came across an article about Jack Ma that I found extremely inspiring. His current net worth is over $20 billion, but before his success, he went through so much rejection:
  • He failed a college entrance exam three times.
  • He even applied to work at KFC, and, out of 24 applicants, he was the only one who didn't get selected.
  • He was rejected from Harvard ten times.
One (obvious) takeaway I had from Jack Ma's story is the importance of perseverance. Even after all those rejection letters, Jack Ma kept going. What I really respect about Jack Ma is that he was so persistent in trying to achieve every single one of his goals. But when it didn't work out, he was really proactive about finding personal satisfaction through a different channel.

He first started out as a teacher. After realizing that that wasn't the best fit for him, he founded his first business, China Yellow Pages, China's first Internet-based company which eventually failed. I mean, honestly, how do you go from getting rejected from KFC to founding your own Internet-based company?

My second takeaway is the importance of an open mind. Although perseverance is important, if you keep getting knocked down, be open to receiving constructive criticism. Why are you getting rejected? Is there something you could be doing better or differently? Is there something that you're overlooking? Knowing how to listen can help you decide what direction you should invest your time and energy in.

Failures and mistakes are inevitable. We will never know if we should keep pursuing that one goal after multiple attempts, but it doesn't hurt to be open to the idea that maybe that specific goal isn't your calling.

My third takeaway: Being able to admit to yourself that your interests aren't your calling requires a lot of self awareness and knowing how your assets can be applied in different ways, which is what, I think, makes Jack Ma an extraordinary businessman.

With love,