Recently I went back to London. For those of you who know me, it is a place that holds a special place in my heart after living there for a year. It is a place where I was inspired and discovered so much about myself but a place that gives me life. Before the visit, I was feeling a bit deflated. I’d just finished first semester and worked the hardest I’ve ever worked in my life. In all honesty, I’ve found final year a lot harder than I expected. I was working all hours of the days and nights just trying to get my assignments done to the best of my ability. I know some people might read this and say ‘oh that’s what you signed up for’ but I like I said I’ve found this year a lot harder and I’m not afraid to say that.
So by the time I eventually finished the semester I was lacking in a lot of sleep and motivation. The trip was my reward to myself for making it through the first semester and you could say the timing could not have been better (although I got ill just after so take that one as you will!).
I went to London with the sole intention of catching up with as many people as possible, especially one of the other interns I did my placement year with. It’s weird going from seeing some of your best friends every day for an entire year to seeing them every four months or more. I guess it makes it nicer when we eventually do get to see each other though and get to catch up on each other’s lives and what we’ve got planned for ourselves after Uni. I’ve made some amazing friendships from my work placements and I am really grateful that I had the experiences I had.
It was actually the conversation with my friend that fuelled this post. The thing is, and I think a lot of people will agree, the team and people you work with can make or break a placement or job. We were only saying that we don’t think our ex-managers truly realise how much of an influence they have had on us and our professional careers. That day in London I was lucky enough to meet with 2/3 members of my old team and I had the nicest time. Like I said, you spend every day for a year with people, they’ve heard all my ‘trying to adult’ fails and the ups and downs of my life for one year. I do miss them.
I’m lucky enough that at the end of each work experience placement, there’s always been someone who inspired me and there are a certain few who I really look up to. Certain people whose motivation and skill in the job made a mark on me. Made me think that one day, I can only hope I am half as good as them.
And this is where I stand. I think it is good for everyone to have someone they look up to. Someone to look up to and admire. It doesn’t have to even be someone from your industry if you don’t know what you want to go into but someone. It gives you a sense of where you could be and what you can achieve. The biggest thing for me is some of these individuals taught me a lot about PR. Some of these individuals took it upon themselves to teach and educate me on things that might seem easy or even pointless to them, but to me, they were helping me progress. They opened my mind and helped me to learn more ready for the next stage in my career.
The list of people who inspire me doesn’t just have one name, there are a few. Not just people I’ve met either, there is a person who I haven’t even met who I look up to. That does sound a bit weird I know, but they are well known in PR and I love reading their articles and seeing what they have to say.
Returning to London for the day sparked a reminder to me that University might be hard at the moment, it might not feel like I’m where I’m meant to be but this is just the final stepping stone learning the final few things to prepare me for my career. Those people who I look up to inspire me to work hard and achieve maybe what they have in a few years time. They inspire me to keep learning and working to be the best and happiest I can be.
So if you are reading this and don’t know who you look up to or admire, take a step back and think. You might not even have realised you look up to them but having someone to look up to is the best motivational factor and can really help you to learn. Help you to see where you can be and what you can achieve.