The halfway mark

Hello!

While I have been writing more than usual, and re-posting those articles on Foreign Filipina, I’m aware that I haven’t made a personal update on this blog in awhile.  Now it’s already June and half of the year has gone by. In a couple of weeks I’m turning 25 and reaching the mid-twenties mark. I’m reminded of what Britney Spears once said, “I’m not a girl, not yet a woman.” But replace the lyrics with “I’m not a kid, not yet an adult.”

IMG_7378

These past 6 months I have been feeling myself grow up, not as a sense of becoming, but a knowing that I’ve already arrived. I know that we’re always going to change, but there’s a beauty in accepting who you are, where you are, flaws and all, now at this certain point in time. A quiet echo that resonates through your entire being. A centre that keeps you balanced and gives you the perspective to weather any unfortunate circumstance.

I feel incredibly grateful for the now.

To be working in a healthy environment (with a good client) where I’m learning how to refine and sharpen my skills.

To be able to still write regularly on the side for a publication that I respect and trust.

To be able to travel far and wide without (too much) guilt and not burning a hole in my savings.

To be able to start and maintain my own passion project (www.outandabroad.com).

To be healthy(er), and pushing my physical fitness by actually going to the gym and running regularly.

To have people whom I love and trust in my life.

I realize now that happiness is a lifestyle choice.  It’s a sum total of what you surround yourself with from the people you hang out with to what you do in your spare time and on the weekends. Once you realize that, then every decision you make should work towards to crafting the life of love and happiness that you want.

Here’s to the rest of 2015.

On Client vs Agency

Image via here

Image via

In the advertising and marketing world there’s always an underlying tension between ‘client’ and ‘agency.’ There are jokes like ‘You crossed over to the dark side‘ (can you guess which they are referring to?) or “Are you crazy?!”

I’ve been both client and agency, the latter of which is my current industry.

Now a lot of agency people (from media to advertising) look at me with disbelief when I tell them that I left one of the top multinational companies in the world and a marketing position that “a million [people] would die for”, as Meryl Streep in The Devil Wear’s Prada would say. What I would get in return, they pointed out to me, would be an unhealthy mix of long hours with crazy deadlines, difficult clients, and mundane last-minute changes.

How is that different from what I experienced as a client?

Excuse the language but often it’s the same shit, different company. When you remove the job titles…

Everyone has to project manage.

Everyone has stakeholders.

Everyone has deadlines.

Everyone has long hours.

Bureaucracy exists everywhere.

Maybe I’m over simplifying, but my principle is to always keep it simple. Whether client or agency, the key factor for success and happiness in the work place is finding the culture for you, with people on the same wave length and management that you respect, doing work that you’re okay to put in long hours for, and of course having fun at the same time.

In the last 2 months, my kind-of-workd-hard-play-hard culture looked something like this:

The girls during an epic night out.

The girls during an epic night out.

One of many inspiring town halls

One of many inspiring town halls

Pimping out the new office bar "The Fix" every Friday night.

Pimping out the new office bar “The Fix” every Friday night.

Friday night Fix

Friday night Fix

We're gladiators in suits.

We’re gladiators in suits.

Happy hour is every hour with a great team.

Happy hour is every hour with a great team.

Epic night out.

Epic night out.

Partying with the clients!

Partying with the clients!

The best digital team ever

The best digital team ever

Have you ever tried to photocopy your own face?

Have you ever tried to photocopy your own face?

Agency essentials: laptop, bottle of wine, coffee, water.

Agency essentials: laptop, bottle of wine, coffee, water.