You must have seen the book on Instagram, the news, your nearest bookstores, and maybe some of you have already picked up the books by now. I’m talking about #GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso. The book is one of the 5 Coffee Table Books I want to have. I finally had the chance to get it and more importantly, read it.
At first, I was a bit skeptical of this book. I was never the kind of person who read self-help books or in this case, business entrepreneur books. “So why did you want to get this again?” you might wonder. It was purely for visual reason. It’s millennial pink, you guys! Another reason why I was skeptical about this book was the fact that #GirlBoss is one of the most hyped books among girls and women entrepreneur. The book is present in every single “must read books for female entrepreneur list” out there.
I have to say though that once I open the book and start reading it, it was nothing like I expected. Note to self: Never judge a book by its genre. #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso is a modern, informative, and down-to-earth book. The whole time I read the book, I felt like I was listening to a girl friend chatting away about her life experiences and the lessons she learned along the way. Sophia doesn’t sugarcoat anything; she tells it as it is. You will get to know the good, the bad, and the crazy side of creating your own business – all in one book. She gives you advices and examples while also sharing her mistakes. She throws in warning and precautions along the way as well.
I truly recommend you to grab yourself a copy of this book, but in the meantime here are some things I learned from reading #GIRLBOSS.
9 Lessons I Learnt from #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso
“You won’t get your dream jobs right away and that’s ok”. A reminder to us all. I graduated university in 2016 and what felt like the hardest thing was not getting the job I want. Since graduated, I’ve tried working in different sectors. I’ve done project management and public relations for non-profit organisation, a bit of accounting, and now I work as a content writer for an IT company. Are these the things I imagine myself doing after I left university? Not really. However, each of these jobs I’ve done taught me more skills as well as helping me to learn more about myself. Knowing what I like and don’t like in a job helps me to be more focused to get the job I want. Learn from the work you do; list down the good and the bad. It will definitely help you in looking for and getting that dream job.
Ask for what you want. One of the biggest lesson I learned from the book is to ask for what I want. I’m a considerably shy person. Often times, I choose to wait for things rather than go for it. However, I do realise that things are not going to come to us if we don’t go for it. As a shy-until-comfortable type of person, I struggle with asking questions. However, it’s true that the only thing I have to do is ask. If I need more information on certain issues, ask. If I need help, just ask. I try this in my current work right now and it helps me to work effectively. Other people can’t read our mind and not everyone cares enough to ask you what you want. We are the ones who have to put it out there.
It sounds incredibly platitudinal, but no one will ever be able to love you if you don’t love yourself. What’s beautiful about it is that if you love yourself enough, you don’t need the validation from anyone else. My advice to #GIRLBOSS is to get excited about the mistakes you’ll make”
Love yourself. Oh, cliché. We hear it over and over again that we have to love ourselves first before others can love us. I personally still struggle with this point. Leandra Medine from Man Repeller makes a short appearance in the book and said the quote above. As cliché as it sounds, it’s actually true. For the last couple of years, I’ve been going through a rollercoaster journey when it comes to self-love. There are moments when I’ll feel good about myself, focus on all the good things about me and that help me to become a more confident version of myself. However, there are also moments when I don’t think I’m good enough and focus entirely on things I don’t like about myself and things I wish I can change about myself without actually doing anything. When I’m in this mindset, I tend to be more closed off. After reading this particular part, I sat down and really think, trying to compare the two versions of myself and realise that, when I focus on the good things, I’m a much happier version of myself and that definitely brings out all the best qualities in me. I guess, sometimes the most cliché sayings are actually the truth.
Define failure and success on your own term. Another big lesson I got from the book is the concept of failure and success. If I ask you to name anyone successful, I will definitely get different answers. Why? Because we each have our own perception and definition of success. Sophia reminds us that failure and success look different to everyone. What you consider as a failure, may not be a failure for others and what you see as a success, may not be what others consider a success. And that’s fine.
It’s ok to make mistakes. Following, the point about failure and success, Sophia and other girlbosses being interviewed for this book have one universal advice – it’s ok to make mistakes. Go into any situation with an open mind and the intention to learn and grow. Like Leandra Medine said, get excited about the mistakes you’ll make! You’ll learn a thing or two and that will help you to define and achieve your own version of success.
“When you believe in yourself, other people believe in you, too”
Believe in yourself – and magic. It’s important to believe in yourself. Who would believe you if you don’t even believe in yourself? Listen to your guts and go with it. No one knows you better than yourself. On top of that, Sophia also talks about believing in magic. She believes that magic is something you make for yourself. Know your goal, make it center and front and try to incorporate little habits in your daily life that will eventually help you to reach that goal. In the book, Sophia talks about how she made specific goals into short phrases and she would use them as her laptop passwords. Unconsciously, she reaffirmed these goals whenever she typed in her password. This help her to started acting accordingly to achieve the goals. There is no scientific reasoning behind this, but who knows maybe it will work for you too.
Take chances and be open for opportunities. While it’s good for you to have plans and goals, you still have to leave a bit of room for the universe to have its way. You never know what’s good going to come out when you take the leap. Here’s a reminder from Sophia; “You create the world, blink by blink… You will make sacrifices and compromises, get let down and let other people down, fail and start over, break some hearts, take some names and learn to pick up and continue when your own heart gets broken. But difficult doesn’t mean impossible, and out of the bajillions of things in this universe that you can’t control, what you can control is how hard you try, and if or when to pack it in.”
Focus on the positive things in your life and you’ll be shocked at how many more positive things start happening
Focus on the positive. Easier said than done. It’s easy to fall into negativity and only focus on the negatives in our lives. When I was in middle school, I complained a lot. To my 14 years old self, it was easier to complain about the homework than to actually do the homework itself. However, one day, out of the blue, I decided to complain less. I know it’s impossible to never complain, but I tried to start focusing more on the positive. I try to find the bright spot in every situation and try to make the situation work for me. Life has been kinder to me after that. The quote above was not lying; once you become more positive in your approach to life, more positive things will come your way.
Fortune favors the bold who get shit done. I tend to overthink. I worry too much sometimes to the point where I’m actually pissed at myself for being an overthinker. I sometimes care too much about what other people think of me and this particular quote from #GIRLBOSS is definitely a good reminder to stop overthink, stop caring about what others think, and just do what feels right. After all, no one knows about you more than yourself.
BONUS: Guide to writing a cover letter and interview. If you don’t plan on reading the whole, at least read chapter 8. In this chapter, Sophia talks all about hiring, staying employed, and firing. From business owners to job seekers, there is something for you to learn from this chapter. I personally find her guide to writing cover letter to be really helpful. It gives me a little insight into what business owners actually look for from a cover letter. Sophia also gives us crucial advice on job interviews. A short reminder: Remember to make your cover letter interesting and personal and please don’t chew gum during the interview.