Every calling is great when greatly pursued

Comments (19)

Living on purpose. It's a growing, evolving process. It takes focus, clarity and regular reflection. Here's one story about a client's evolution and effort to stay on purpose.

Paul is doing some incredible things. His business bottom line is up and stronger than ever. There are new opportunities on the horizon allowing him to live his dream and in many ways he's on the leading edge in his industry.

I met Paul four years ago. He was referred to me when I was making marketing calls to businesses in my area. Paul was very interested in personal and professional development. Our first call lead to some interesting conversations and Paul subsequently participated in many classes I taught. Two years ago, Paul joined my purpose discovery workshop, resulting in his purpose statement:

"I eagerly seek to acquire and share knowledge to be of benefit to all."

Paul told me he had always wanted to be a public speaker and to him, his purpose statement was a clear reflection of this desire. By understanding this is what he naturally loved doing and sought to contribute, Paul began to shift his life and pursue his dream. We started a weekly coaching program. He also signed up for Toastmasters to hone his speaking skills and he hasn't looked back.

Paul's company is a small independent wholesale supplier of cleaning and sanitation products. You might be thinking to yourself, "That doesn't seem very glamorous. I thought you said he's doing some incredible things. He's just selling cleaning products."

Paul's business is selling cleaning products, but his real passion is infection control. He has taken it upon himself to develop an expertise in cleaning and infection control so healthy people don't get sick and sick people have a chance to heal. He's not a scientist, but Paul understands the science of infection control. His real specialty, however, is the Art of Infection Control. He's the "what to do and how to do it guy" people in his local health care community often turn to for advice.

Today, aside from running his business, Paul speaks at conferences and is connecting leading experts in the field of infection control with the front line hospital and nursing home staff across the country by leading and facilitating group TeleLectures on the phone.

Let's back up two years. Although he longed to speak in front of groups, Paul felt handicapped by a slight stutter. It wasn't until he realized what his purpose was, "...to acquire and share knowledge..." that despite his reticence, he decided to go for it.

Paul is developing an excellent reputation now and in just two years, is known as an "expert" in his field. He has no Ph.D. in science and doesn't really need one. He calls on others' scientific expertise when needed. He's able to make a fantastic contribution through what he knows, "The Art of Infection Control" -- how to use the Science.

Education in the Art of Infection Control is part of Paul's vehicle for touching the world. In the beginning, Paul had a lot of doubts about actually making this happen. "I need a degree," he thought. "No one will take me seriously," he told me. "I don't know how to speak to groups," etc., etc. All of these "issues" have been overcome and he is indeed living his dream. His goal of speaking and sharing his knowledge and insights aligns with who he is. It "just seems natural." When you act in alignment with your deepest drive to contribute, it never really feels like work.

Then, last week, with two years of success behind him, Paul called me and said, "I'm not sure if I'm on track or if my purpose is correct."

Sometimes even when we know the direction we want to go, we can get lost. We lose sight of our goal; we forget why we're doing something or maybe the day-to-day pressures and distractions make it seem like we're off track. Maybe we think our purpose is not big enough.

So, with this new doubt we took some time and reviewed Paul's purpose. (We only wonder if we're off track when we're in doubt, when we lose focus, when our vision is cloudy. Of course most of us don't review if we're on purpose, when we're feeling great, focused and aligned.)

This may sound simple, but in review, I asked Paul if he was still "eagerly seeking to acquire and share his knowledge". He said yes. Then I asked him to look at his drive to do this and "to be of benefit to all".

"Is this still what you are trying to do?" "Yes, it is."

"Does this purpose still reflect your deepest drive to contribute?" Another resounding "YES!"

"Then is this statement of purpose indeed still absolutely valid?" "YES!"

"Are you sure there is nothing missing or is there something else you need to add?" "No" said Paul, "I guess I wasn't really seeing things with my purpose in focus."

Paul was reconnected to his purpose.

Because of the clarity of his actions and intention, Paul is doing incredible things in all aspects of his life. His business, his church life, and his relationships all continue to grow and be aligned with his unique contribution, despite occasional feelings of doubt or distraction. Living a meaningful life, one of purpose, is an evolving process. As a matter of fact, it's a lifetime job.

SPECIAL NOTE Usually we equate success with being on purpose. But note: you can be 100% on purpose and not necessarily succeed or reach your goal. Your purpose is about your drive to contribute. It is "what you are trying to do" and at which you may or may not succeed. Purpose is the driver. In Paul's case, the driver is "to acquire and share knowledge to be of benefit to all."

Maybe he is unsuccessful in acquiring a certain nugget of knowledge or is unsuccessful in clearly sharing his knowledge. This does not mean he is not on purpose. The mere fact of attempting to acquire and trying to share knowledge shows alignment with purpose.

Sure, we all want to be successful but it is not the only criteria by which we measure your alignment with your purpose. We measure being on purpose as the process of authentically seeking to create the results you want. It is the process of being and doing and is not necessarily tied to immediate results.

Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Nelson Mandela all strived for years in the service of their purpose, often meeting with defeat after defeat. They too may have had setbacks and doubts, yet continued to keep focused on their purpose.

If you get stuck, try stepping back from the "results" and look at the bigger process. Are your actions aligned with your deepest drive to contribute and live a purposeful life? Only you know, and your answers will reveal to you if you are on purpose. You may need to make a few adjustments or maybe, if you are like Paul, just need a reminder that you are on the right track.

About the Author

Robert Knowlton is an Executive and Business Success Coach. Coaching executives, managers and teams in leadership development, communication strategies, and discovering organizational purpose and vision. Visit my web site at: http://www.SuccessOptions.com/ezine.htm?SF


Eva 11.12.2009. 14:44

How does one modulate breathing to improve singing voice? I just want to be able to sing without embarrassment! It seems I can't sing an entire octave without starting in the middle of one and switching to the lower end of the next. I hope that makes sense. My vocal cords, I believe, are healthy (never smoked) but I don't know how to "breathe" to improve my singing voice. Is there an essential instruction that describes the physiological action that one must follow for basic voice control? If I had an income I would pursue lessons. Any suggestions?


Admin 11.12.2009. 14:44

Hi Eva,
It sounds like you need some basic ideas for learning how to breathe low and support your sound. If you can start to gain an idea of where and how to breathe effectively then you will be able to make it through a phrase/warm-up and keep going.

First of all, for a bit of a self-test, watch yourself sing in the mirror for several minutes - just sing however you've been accustomed to singing. Watch to see where you are breathing. Are your shoulders moving up when you breathe? Are you "gasping for air" slightly? If you see evidence of either of these things then you are only using 1/3 or less of your own available air resources.

The idea of correct breathing technique for singers involves using the low, diaphragm breathing (called by other names as well). If you picture a triangle as your lung capacity, you want to fill the lower 1/3 of that triangle first. Good singers work for months and years on gaining and reviewing their breathing method, so it can take time to really use this effectively.

You can try all or some of these ideas below to get an idea of how this works:

1. Place your hands on your hips and work on taking every breath where your hands are as you sing.
2. Lie on your back with a few heavy books on your stomach just over your belly button. Sing for several minutes on some warm-up exercises then go through part of a song moving these books up each time you breathe.
3. Stretch out using a door ? this is another way to sing and practice plus you have to breathe low (this can also greatly help with high notes). Open a door and stand at the end of the door. Reach your arms up to hold onto the top of the door with your toes and belly pressed up against the end (where the lock comes out). Slide your body slightly over so you can easily sing to one side of the open door without twisting your neck. Now go through your song (after warming up) and every time you breathe push yourself away from the door at your stomach area. I?ve seen this work great with students causing them to relax their neck and utilize their breathing effectively.
4. Practice the "use all your air, then breathe again technique." If you don't mind I'll refer you to my vocal blog where I wrote about this one so I don't add too much length here. It's free website/informational tool for singers: http://singersresource.net/basic-breathing/
That blog post might answer your question in a bit more detail if you want to check that out.

Ask for a voice lesson or two as a gift if possible. There is not a substitute for getting some instruction from a qualified teacher even a lesson or two every now and then. Find someone who will encourage you to always warm-up and is perhaps a more classically trained teacher - ask at music stores or a nearby college. By that I don't mean at all that you have to sing opera or only art songs :-) just that it would be best to really learn about breathing properly and how your vocal apparatus works. Take a few lessons before ever committing to take from them on a regular basis - make sure you like their methods.

Hope that gives you a start!


Grey 06.04.2008. 07:40

How do I get my book published? I am an aspiring author and I would appreciate any information about how to get my book published. (Who do I go to, and how I go about the process) and I would also like to know if it will cost me any money to get my book published. One last thing, can you make a decent living as an author (on average, how much can the average first time writer earn from a book)? Thank you. Any information would be greatly appreciated.


Admin 06.04.2008. 07:40

This is something like I answered yesterday.


you're asking about publishing so I assume that you already have a finished manuscript.

1.) edit, edit and edit (10x) your novel first. look for anything that needs improvement. so, everytime you edit, concentrate on one thing. like: first edit: spelling, second edit: grammar, third edit: flow and so on...
2.) prepare your manuscript
- make it double spaced, font size:12, font style: courier new or anything that's easy to read. (there should be 25 lines in one page. a page consists of 250 words.)

3.) find friends who will willingly read your manuscript and ask them what they think.
- (www.writing.com) is a good place to get great reviews

3.) if it's okay, Find an agent
- just find, don't contact them yet..
(www.aar-online.org)- helps you find names and adresses of every agent member of this trade organization.
(Writer's Market) - same as above

4.) Prepare a query letter:
- www.fictionwriters.com/tips-query-letter...
- provides tips on query letters

here are tips from the book:
*never say "I have written a fiction novel" That's just dumb. agents always assume you have written a book. That's why you wrote to them in the first place
* never call. They hate that. That's what query letters are for
* Don't write query letters with typos
*Don't say, "I will not waste your time so I will get to the point." You have already wasted their time because of that sentence.
*Make it sound interesting
* they don't like letters more than one page
* be professional

( agents cost you money but It's better than doing the work youself, trust me.)

5. Then, the agent will tell you what you need to do from there.
-I think you'll need to make a synopsis or something.
A synopsis is just as important as your novel. Ruin it and you ruin the novel too.
- then I think they will want your manuscript. (ofcourse) So, you may want to send them loose pages that are numbered.

"I would also like to know if it will cost me any money to get my book published. "

yup. it will cost you money on printing and for the agent. (but you can talk to the agent how you will pay him/her. usually, they get a percentage from the money you've earned from your book. There is also the money for sending the query letters/ manuscript.

"can you make a decent living as an author (on average, how much can the average first time writer earn from a book)? "

Yeah, you can if you are like Stephen King and Hemingway. You have to have passion. You need to stick to your dream pursue it no matter what and. Also, you need to be a good writer. (If you're already a writer, you know what being good and great means. P.S. I don't really believe that "people are born to be writers." I think writing is a skill that is aquired with hardwork.

New writers don't get published right away but, the money you get depends on you and the publishing company's agreement. (it's in the contract.)

Well, I'm just 16 so you don't have to believe everything I said. I just got it all from my book.


x_beforethedawn_x 08.09.2007. 23:37

How can I maintain interest in my writing? Occasionally, I get ideas that I think would make a great story. These writing "sparks" as I call them, come at the most random times of the day, and come about once every few months. And when they do, I drop whatever I'm doing, if I can, and start jotting down ideas for a possible plot. I create characters, a setting, a basic outline, and then write every night for about 10 days. However, after the tenth day, I find myself writing less and less until I get completely bored with what I'm doing and stick the notebook in a drawer so I can take it out every once and a while to see old writing. Some of these beginnings, however, I want to pursue. Any ideas on how to keep my interest in a story alive? And any ideas on how to make time to write a lot every day?
Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks!


Admin 08.09.2007. 23:37

It's probably a good idea to make a daily goal for yourself. For example: I want to write for ten minutes every day. You can do it right before bed or right when you wake up or whatever, and even if you're not feeling inspired that particular day you should at least sit for ten minutes with the intention of writing SOMETHING, even if it doesn't happen. You could also consider starting with short stories, which don't take as long to finish, to begin with so that your short attention span isn't as much of a problem. Or maybe changing the location that you write in every day (park, cafe, bus, basement) could help you. Lastly, you could try some writing exercises on a particular piece that you like but have lost interest in. I know that this really worked for my actors when I directed a one-act play. They seemed to be getting really tired of the script and their boredom was translating to a tangible lack of energy on stage. So one day during rehearsal I had them do a run through in which I called out various genres for them to do the play in. "Melodrama! Musical! Gangster Rap! Interpretive Dance! Valley Girls! Chekhov! Ballet! Opera!" The effects were hilarious, and I actually made some of the characters put their improvisations into the performance. Perhaps you would challenge yourself to rewrite the piece but in a different time period. Try revising the composition to have the main character be of the opposite gender and see how the meaning of it changes. What if the story had to take place entirely without dialogue? Or even more difficult, what if you could use nothing BUT dialogue? Write alternate endings, add new background information on the characters, weave in some subplots. Even if it's hard or uninteresting, it will really improve your writing ability and maybe you'll end up going in a new direction you like even better than the original.


treefingers53 21.01.2011. 21:43

How does Baudrillard use the word "seduction"? I haven't read that much by him but he seems to use the word in a very specific way. If someone could elaborate on it I would greatly appreciate it.


Admin 21.01.2011. 21:43

Jean Baudrillard brings out the similarities of persuasion to seduction when he notes that the seducer typically thinks he is the active party but in fact is in thrall to the seducee. The genuine seducer has to devote all his attentions to the seduction for a period to accomplish the seduction, and in the process, is effectively enslaved by the seducee until the seduction is successful. The seducer?s calling is related to the extermination of the seducee's natural power by an artificial power of the seducer. He will deliberately undertake to equal or surpass the natural power to which, in spite of all that makes him appear as the seducer, he has succumbed from the beginning.

In the same way, executives usually see and portray themselves as the active party in instigating change in their organizations, but often they are in thrall to the organization, and the "seduction" is in some ways about setting themselves free.

Baudrillard draws a distinction between genuine seduction which he sees as different from the insincere seducer (who pursues seduction for seduction's sake, which is not really seduction at all) i.e. someone who says ?I do not want to love, cherish or even please you, but to seduce you ? and my only concern is not that you love or please me, but that you are seduced.? This kind of insincere seduction is not only unattractive, but also very ineffective, since the seducee usually sees through it quickly, and then the seducer has an ugly situation on his hands.

The true seducer like Casanova is really a lover who genuinely wants only the happiness of the beloved, so that the beloved typically cherishes the relationship forever.

Baudrillard argues that every successful seduction ends with the murder of the object in that it creates a new identity for the beloved. In this sense, seduction is always ? and this is a variation on the same theme ? an attempt to cast a spell over the seducee, hopefully a friendly spell, not merely seeking to avenge the spell that the other exercises over the seducer.

One inevitable result of successful organizational change is that the organization attains a new identity, and in this sense loses its old identity, which in the process dies. When the transformation is the result of a conscious act, the old self can be said to be murdered.

Baudrillard argues that seduction is about the creative use of weakness. To seduce is to appear weak to the seducee. To seduce is to render the seducee weak. We seduce through our own weakness, never with strong signs or powers. And we seduce through using the weakness of the seducee. In seduction, we exploit both dimensions of weakness, and this is what gives seduction its strength. People respond more easily to weakness than to the battering ram.

This is a difficult lesson for senior executives to learn. Having great power, they are tempted to try to use their power to get their staff to accept their ideas, not realizing that power is useful for getting attention, but not for generating enduring enthusiasm for new ideas. Genuine leadership shows vulnerability and hesitates shyly: in so doing, it gains privileged access to the backdoor of the mind.


ACRENRAC 13.01.2011. 00:31

A question about Liszt and his Années de pèlerinage? Do you have a favorite interpretation of these suites? And do you think Liszt is underrated as a solo piano composer? Seems to me he may have been, but that is my perspective.


Admin 13.01.2011. 00:31

It's surprisingly difficult to entertain a 'favourite' (let alone 'best') performance of these cycles when you yourself have had them in repertoire as cycles for more than three decades. Without plumping for your own performances, you'd be at peril of wasting your time in your own endeavours and, worse, in effect be indictable for luring your audiences for gain to concert halls under false pretences, and that with the greatest likelihood of a swift trial and summary conviction, at your own hand! :-)

That said, I have always, ever since their first appearance in 1977, found the DG integral recordings of these works by Lazar Berman unfailingly thought provoking and, much more importantly, they equally unfailingly continue to have that quality with the passing of the decades upon each re-hearing of them. Supported and served by a matchless physical 'machine', his views of these works both individually and within the larger canvas created when we undertake their integral performance never fail to ask many more new questions than those they solve each time, which is the very hallmark of truly great & enduring performances of any era.

With his mature career in the West only emerging in the mid 70s when my own very much fledgling version was attempting to do something similar at a rather different end of the trajectory, our paths crossed on a number of occasions, appearing in the same cities, before or after one another, and in curious polyglot conversations using a mixture of any language that came to hand and could be understood by both, even if only tentatively, my abiding memory of him is of a veritable lion of a man in the grip of deep passions and fiercely held, relentlessly probed convictions. Not bad qualities to have in our profession and not infrequently in short supply within it otherwise, specifically where the performance of this repertoire in particular is concerned. Without his explicit encouragement to pursue an at the time tentative idea of mine to introduce these Liszt cycles in festival performances as a single, 2¾ hr, 3-interval 'sitting' (though we differed as regards my insistence to place the 'Supplement' to Bk II last, in order to give the audience 'something to whistle' while making their way home) I would probably not have eventually done so: another quality needing emphasis was Berman's great generosity to young(er) colleagues. A quality Liszt himself was no stranger to either, to a fault, for that matter...

Of course Liszt is underrated, always has been, and often treated with outrageous double standards, with a specific predilection to 'beat him to a pulp' with that ever convenient stick called 'excessive virtuosity'. 'Excessive' by comparison with what is never established, for there is no such objective measure available, but it sounds heavenly good to any musical Calvin barely able to finger-pick 'Three Blind Mice', masking with the glowing, zealot's disdain of the born-again bigot their own inability at least to equal Liszt's achievement in those terms, or any others, for that matter, *first* before sounding off at interminable length from their shoddy, hastily erected soapboxes.

Liszt's output is without question extraordinarily uneven, ranging from the blindingly inspired, almost leaving mere mortals behind him without a second glance, to the most mundane, barrel-organ grinding pièces d'occasion only entered in upon the creation of to satisfy this or that charitable appeal to his seemingly never ending generosity, for this cause or the next, ones which he was temperamentally unable ever to refuse. Greatly to his detriment and to that of his enduring reputation, too.

The very best aphoristic description I know, describing Liszt in every respect, was one I believe first coined to describe Samuel Taylor-Coleridge: "An Archangel, a little damaged...."

Perfect! And I, for one, am deeply grateful for every second I have spent and still intend to spend in his company. There's simply nothing like it, for both better and worse, rough & smooth, just like a marriage... :-)

All the best,


Randal 25.02.2013. 16:28

What does the story of "The Fox Without a Tail" teach children? The Fox Without a Tail

A Fox that had been caught in a trap succeeded at last, after much painful tugging, in getting away. But he had to leave his beautiful bushy tail behind him.

For a long time he kept away from the other Foxes, for he knew well enough that they would all make fun of him and crack jokes and laugh behind his back. But it was hard for him to live alone, and at last he thought of a plan that would perhaps help him out of his trouble.

He called a meeting of all the Foxes, saying that he had something of great importance to tell the tribe.

When they were all gathered together, the Fox without a Tail got up and made a long speech about those Foxes who had come to harm because of their tails.

This one had been caught by hounds when his tail had become entangled in the hedge. That one had not been able to run fast enough because of the weight of his brush. Besides, it was well known, he said, that men hunt Foxes simply for their tails, which they cut off as prizes of the hunt. With such proof of the danger and uselessness of having a tail, said Master Fox, he would advise every Fox to cut it off, if he valued life and safety.

When he had finished talking, an old Fox arose, and said, smiling:

"Master Fox, kindly turn around for a moment, and you shall have your answer."

When the poor Fox without a Tail turned around, there arose such a storm of jeers and hooting, that he saw how useless it was to try any longer to persuade the Foxes to part with their tails.

I would greatly appreciate your opinion on what you believe is the important lesson or lessons that can be learned from this tale.

Thank you!


Admin 25.02.2013. 16:28

synopsis from web page (below) summarizes:

It happened that a Fox caught its tail in a trap, and in struggling to release himself lost all of it but the stump. At first he was ashamed to show himself among his fellow foxes. But at last he determined to put a bolder face upon his misfortune, and summoned all the foxes to a general meeting to consider a proposal which he had to place before them. When they had assembled together the Fox proposed that they should all do away with their tails. He pointed out how inconvenient a tail was when they were pursued by their enemies, the dogs; how much it was in the way when they desired to sit down and hold a friendly conversation with one another. He failed to see any advantage in carrying about such a useless encumbrance. ?That is all very well,? said one of the older foxes; ?but I do not think you would have recommended us to dispense with our chief ornament if you had not happened to lose it yourself.?

Distrust interested advice.


Little Monster <3 09.03.2013. 21:04

Can you help me edit my college admissions essay? This is a admissions essay for the Fashion Institute of technology. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. I am currently 29 words over so if you have any ideas as to where I can narrow it down, that would also be greatly appreciated. Thanks!!

I have always had enthusiasm for everything related to beauty and style. When I was younger I, like most little girls, found myself playing in my mother?s makeup and playing dress-up with her clothes. Unlike most children, however, I haven?t stopped but I have continued to experiment and engage myself in everything to do with fashion. I steal retro pieces from my mother and grandmother and make them my own. I watch recaps of Fashion Week in New York and Paris every year and dream that one day I?ll be there to experience one of fashion?s most exciting events. When I first explored my options in the world of fashion, I thought my efforts would be in vain. I had a simplistic view of fashion and I believed the career potentials to be narrow. Fortunately, I was later introduced to the vast career opportunities that can be found in the fashion world. This is where I found my dream career in fashion merchandising.

I am inspired by so many talented designers. Some of my favorite lines are The Row, Alexander McQueen, Rachel Gilbert, among many others. I love the classy, casual and bohemian statement that The Row conveys. Casual Boho, I feel is the style I generate toward, but I don?t like constraining myself to a particular style. I wear clothes that appeal to me so I might add a little edge to my normal casual style. Alexander McQueen has said this quote that has become a mantra in my life, "I think there is beauty in everything. What ?normal? people would perceive as ugly, I can usually see something of beauty in it." I cherish this quote because it expresses the way I have always perceived life.

In school I decided to pursue another interest I had. I took a class in theatre. I was intrigued by actors and I thought I would be a good one. I soon realized, however, that life in front of the stage was not my forte. I found a better calling behind the stage in wardrobe. I styled the actors in all of my school?s major plays and came up with ideas for their hair and makeup. It was a very eye-opening experience that gave me a harder push toward the goals I am aiming for today.

The Fashion Institute of Technology is the perfect school for me because it is the epitome of every dream I have ever had. I?ve searched many other schools internationally that claim to be the best experts of the fashion business, but my heart has always returned to FIT. I thought I could satisfy my ache for knowledge at a ?normal college?. A ?normal college? is what everyone around me has told me I want. They want me to go to a school that would give me the ?college experience? that is filled with frat parties and football games. I?ve realized that I don?t want that kind of college experience. From the skilled professors to the abundant study abroad opportunities FIT has proved to me it is the only school worth pursuing.

In life I believe that I tend to lead toward the things that other people want for me, like becoming a lawyer or in this case going to a local state school, but I have realized that the only way for me to be truly happy is to follow my heart?s desires. It was this realization that has pulled me to this remarkable university. When I am accepted to FIT I will be leaving the comforts of home and into the heart of New York City. I love the idea of moving somewhere completely new. As a student I will work hard and only strive for the best in every endeavor. I have an eagerness to learn and a craving to learn everything this business has to offer. FIT gives me every opportunity I could ever ask for. All I want from my school is to give me the skills and strengths I need to pursue every aspiration that I could possibly conceive.

A major in Fashion Merchandising Management will give me the prowess to be a fashion buyer. I want to be a buyer for a major retail company. My eventual dream would be to own my own retail corporation. I want to start with an online boutique and move my way up to owning my own store. Eventually I want to keep expanding and turn my small business into a corporation. Through FIT?s many resources, its prime location, and creative student body, FIT has not just become an interest but a necessity in creating the life and career I want to pursue.

Little Monster <3

Admin 09.03.2013. 21:04

My two biggest issues with this are your occasionally awkward phrasing, and your overuse of the word "I". How about the following? Also, if you have any leadership experience outside the fashion and theatre fields (e.g., officer of a club or organization, captain of a sports or academic team, section leader of a band), that's probably worth mentioning too.

I have always had great enthusiasm for everything related to beauty and style. When Like most little girls, when I was younger, I found myself playing with my mother?s makeup and playing dress-up with her clothes. Unlike most children, however, I never stopped experimenting, but instead have continued to engage in as many fashion-related activities as possible. I take retro pieces from my mother and grandmother, and alter them to make them my own. I watch recaps of Fashion Week in New York and Paris every year, and dream that one day I?ll be there to experience one of the fashion industry's most exciting events. When I first explored my options in the world of fashion, I had a simplistic view of the industry and believed the career potential to be very limited. Fortunately, I was later introduced to the vast career opportunities that can be found in the fashion world, and that is when I found my dream career in the form of fashion merchandising.

I am inspired by a wide variety of talented designers. Some of my favorite lines are The Row, Alexander McQueen and Rachel Gilbert, though I admire and respect many other designers as well. I love the classy, casual and bohemian statement that The Row conveys. I feel that Casual Boho is the style that I naturally gravitate toward more than any other, but I avoid constraining myself to any one style, and typically try to add a little edge to the styles that I wear. Alexander McQueen once said, "I think there is beauty in everything. What ?normal? people would perceive as ugly, I can usually see something of beauty in it." That quote has become a mantra for me, and I cherish McQueen's words because they perfectly express the way that I have always perceived life.

In school, I decided to pursue another of my interests, and took a class in theatre. I was intrigued by actors, and thought I that could be a good one. However, I soon realized that life on stage was not my forte. Instead, I found that my efforts were much better utilized backstage in the wardrobe department. I designed the actors' costumes in all of my school?s major plays, and also made recommendations regarding their hair and makeup. My work in theatre was a very eye-opening experience, and it helped me to more clearly define the goals toward which I am aiming today.

The Fashion Institute of Technology is the perfect school for me because it is the epitome of every dream that I have ever had. I?ve researched many other schools, both domestic and international, that claim to be the foremost educational institutions for the fashion industry. However, my heart has always returned to FIT. At one point, I thought that I could satisfy my thirst for knowledge at a ?normal" college, and that is what nearly everyone around me has told me I want. They want me to go to a school that would give me what they consider to be the ?college experience?, which is filled with frat parties and football games. However, I?ve realized that I don?t want that kind of college experience. From the highly skilled professors to the abundant opportunities to study abroad, FIT has proven to me that it is the only school worth pursuing for someone with my interests, goals and talents.

Earlier in life, I often found myself leaning toward things that other people want for me, in order to please family members and close friends. For that reason, I once considered going to a local state school and eventually becoming an attorney. However, as I matured, I realized that the only way for me to be truly happy is to follow my heart?s desires. It was this realization that has pulled me toward the Fashion Institute of Technology, which provides opportunities that fit those desires remarkably well. When I am accepted to FIT, I will be leaving the comforts of home and landing in the heart of New York City, and I love the idea of moving somewhere completely new. As a student, I will work hard and strive to do my best in every endeavor. I am eager to learn everything that the fashion business has to offer, and feel that FIT gives me every educational opportunity I could ever hope for in that regard. All I ask from my school is that it help me develop the skills and strengths that I will need to pursue my dreams and aspirations, and I'll provide the hard work, dedication, and enthusiasm needed to achieve them.

A major in Fashion Merchandising Management will give me the expertise and credentials that I need to become a fashion buyer for a major retail company. My eventual dream is to own my own retail corporation.


John 12.12.2012. 02:26

What should I do with my girlfriend? Should I stay with her? Ok, this might be a little long but its a really big deal to me right now i would appreciate anyone who would give advice.

Ok, so im 18 and my girlfriend 16. We have been dating the last 10 months, she was my first girlfriend and I lost my virginity to her. I loved her with all my heart no doubt i would have taken a bullet for her. And I know she loved me to great extents too, but that of course did not mean we didn't have problems. The biggest problem in our relationship was the fact that I had to be a parent and boyfriend to her because her my is a useless parent. But i didn't care, I loved her and let her stay with me to use my internet (she does online school) and her mom couldnt afford it. She stayed with me at my house all the time while I went to college. I fed her, did everything for her. And I know she loved me to, and I probably sound a little bias. But anyway, the problem that I am talking about now is by far the worst. My girlfriend has always had physical problems with me. I never once hit her i can say, but she has started every physical fight and hit me so hard. that I am almost forced to hold her down or push her off of me or something and i the heat of the moment that led to worse things as i tried to leave ( which she would block me from doing) and i chocked her for 1 second to try to leave. I know it was wrong and I feel like half of a man. one morning she woke up and slapped me, and i got pissed bc i didn;t think she was playing. She started yelling to get out, and I was like no im not leaving cause u always say if i leave i walk out on our relationship and im not commited. So she got even more pissed and started throwing my stuff including my laptop. She even threw an ashtray at my back. I got all the stuff i could to my vehicle to get away, then she locked the door so i couldnt get the rest of it. I tried to open it, and accidently broke the door. Well long story short, we both got arrested for 3rd degree asault and malicuous injury to property. I spent a night in jail, and since she was a juevinille she didnt.

Now that you know what happened, I am just so torn up because I cant talk to my girlfriend legally for a month. I can do PTI and get a clean record because ive never been in trouble before, but she has and I want to testify that it was my fault. I love her so much. I just feel this is the ultimate betrayel to call the cops on me, even tho she didnt press charges her mom did. People have told me that she was damaged because of the life she was raised in. The had a hell of a child hood compared to me. And I know at this moment we can not sucessfully be together untill we both change. BUt does that mean i should just give up and never pursue her again?? I love her so much, I didnt want another girl I didnt care about any of the parties and stuff in college I changed my whole life for her. But please remember, I know she loved me, and I probably sound biased, but any advice would be greatly appreciated thank you


saunak 12.09.2010. 17:40

Hi my name is Saunak..I am from India and i come from an average family, with an average income.? I am appearing for the SAT this month. so are SAt scores just enough for full financial aid and scholarships. My secondary academic background is fine but Higher secondary scores are low only in science..so what are the procedures i should follow for apllying, what universities should i choose, and my family can only pay a maximum of 7000 rs per month..PLZ advice


Admin 12.09.2010. 17:40

Hey I am a student at the University of Georgia and I might be able to partially answer some of your questions. As far as admission is concerned, colleges look at your SAT scores and your GPA (your scores in secondary classes). As far as scholarships are concerned, as a 4.0 student with great scores in higher secondary classes (called AP classes here) I can tell you that scholarships and financial aid for the most part have nothing to do with your grades and scores. Scholarships are readily and easily available for minorities and students from low income families. I receive about $4,000 US dollars (about 186280 rupees) per year via the Pell Grant because my family qualifies as low income. I would imagine you could probably qualify for this as well. Since you are from India, you will also have access to a large pool of scholarships available all over the US and should not have a problem obtaining more than the necessary funds to attend college in the US. Literally every mid-size to large company has scholarships for minorities students and there are organizations and associations all over the country who have scholarships for minority and specifically for Indian students. You just have to search around, find them, and apply for them. As far as what school to go to, that depends on what course of study you wish to pursue (science, engineering, medical, business, etc.) and what sort of environment you want to pursue it in (urban, college town, large population, small campus,etc.), as every college and university is going to differ greatly in these areas. Hope that helps


Alex 01.07.2013. 20:46

The future of careers in aviation (pilots)? My dad having worked for Boeing for over 30 years, I think the interest in aviation has rubbed off on me because I am very interested in attending a flight school or an aeronautical university (like Embry-Riddle) in order to become a pilot; I would prefer not to join the Air Force or take a military route, however.

With UAVs being used in the military (and I believe I also heard news of plans for commercial planes to be automated), will the need for pilots begin to decrease over the next few decades, or is it still very much a viable career?

It would be great if I could hear about the different pathways to becoming a professional pilot and even some first-hand stories / career reviews & experiences, if anyone happens to actually be a pilot.
Any advice is greatly appreciated ? thanks!


Admin 01.07.2013. 20:46

In a nutshell, the career has become unattractive, the cost in time and money to get there has become very high, more than a doctor or lawyer, the odds of ever getting a great flying job have become very low, and the risk of losing your license permanently due to health or accident are pretty good. If something bad happens, you or your loved ones are likely to face many lawsuits based on any errors you made no matter how insignificant, bankrupting your family.

In the US, the cost to get your ATP license is over $200k in training, fees, room and board, various other expenses. It will take you over five years of training, then another five years flying small planes at poverty pay, then maybe (MAYBE!) you will get into a regional airline, which pays very little. We're talking less than you'd get working minimum wage 40-hour weeks, with some big expenses for you. There is no way you can pay off student loans and survive during that time, many graduates have to take other jobs that limit their progress toward an airline career and stretch that timeline out, just to service their debt. If you have a wealthy sponsor you can make it to the povery pay at a regional. One in ten who pursue a commercial flying career actually make it to getting a license, the rest are probably broke but happier.

Most flying jobs now are low-paying regional jobs, the major airlines only hire every ten years or so in big groups. Fifteen years ago there was a surge of hiring at the majors, and the average new hire was 40 years old with over fifteen years experience. If you want to fly for a major airline, you can hope to make that decision when you are middle-age with a lot of experience. You will return to poverty pay if you do get to the bottom of a major airline seniority list, starting over and broke, again.

Most airline pilots regret their career decision, and do not recommend it to young people. They do not suggest it to their children. The flying is very scripted, you are just following explicit instructions, then turning on the autopilot. The airlines have taken as much skill out of the process as possible, and the trend is to more automation. Cockpits are very closely monitored to make sure pilots comply with every rule, and if anything goes wrong investigators will always find something the pilots didn't comply with. If you are involved in an accident or incident, God help you, because the FAA, NTSB, and your airline won't, they will be looking to put the blame on you to protect themselves, and they are very good at it.

Layovers are in the cheapest hotels, often in industrial and/or dangerous places, and there is barely enough time to shower and eat. Long waits for hotel vans, long rides to hotels, then wait in line for your room. A day where you spend 15-hours in uniform on company property typically pays five hours flight pay, so your real payrate is actually 1/3 of the contractual rate. On international trips you might get closer to 1/2 your contract payrate. Pilots fly more on holidays and vacation season than other times, so expect to be sitting at airports and in hotels for more than half of those times.

Pilot pay is legendary, but it is only a legend now. Airline pilot compensation is less than 1/4 of what it was in the '70s, adjusted for inflation, and the job is much more stressful and zero glamor. Lifetime earnings equate to a two-year trade-school career.

You will spend much of your career on-call, so you need to live within an hour or two of a major airport which you might not get to choose, that can be expensive. You may be moved to another base sometimes, and will need to get a "crashpad" there, many pilots spend most of their career using a crashpad. Crashpads are often apartments shared by a dozen pilots, or a trailer, some pilots even sleep in their cars or on a couch at the airport and shower at a gym.

Yes there is a shortage of pilots coming, but it won't improve the career, it will only force the governments to lower training and experience standards, reducing the value of pilots further. You can see the same thing has happened in the medical industry in response to their shortage, where low-paid nurses assistants do work doctors used to do.

Research this some more, you need to look carefully before you leap. I'll leave a few articles for you to read.


Write a comment

* = required field





* Yes No