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Chapter 3: Build Your Own Stage

How do we decide what we are passionate about in life? Many of us spend our entire lives searching for our calling. It is the big existential question of our time. We are looking for one thing to complete us, be the answer to all of our problems and be the guiding beacon in a dark confusing world. We may ask ourselves, what is it that we are searching for? Or, what is my destiny?

Here’s something I’ve learned over the years: we don’t have one true calling. In fact we have hundreds of different callings throughout the course of our lives. As we grow and change, so do our interests and passions. They may be similar or connected or may take a zig zag obstacle course over time. For example, I have one friend who started off as a fashion model and now works as a gardening teacher on a farm. …

Office Therapist | I hate corporate life. Can I just quit my job?

Q: I was a freelancer who is now working in a more corporate environment and I’m really struggling with the culture and pace of work. Decisions take forever, nothing tangible ever gets accomplished and I’m having a hard time managing the office politics. Do you have any advice on how to handle it or should I just quit and go back to freelance?

A: You can absolutely quit your job at any time you want, but first I would recommend you work on managing your work life better and trying to turn this “problem” into an opportunity before you make any final decisions. …

Office Therapist | With the Covid-19 Pandemic, should I make a permanent move and work remotely indefinitely?

Q: I’m currently based in New York City and given everything with the Covid lockdowns and the possibility for remote office work, I’m considering relocating to someplace that has a better cost of living and quality of life. I know a lot of people are moving, but do you really think it’s safe to assume you can permanently move away from an urban working center and still have reliable employment in the future?

A: Everyday I see more and more global companies selling their HQs and pundits forecasting about the future of fully remote work. With cases back up on the rise, it’s totally possible that office folks won’t go back to work until 2022, if ever. Within this crisis there’s an opportunity; you have the time, freedom and flexibility to make the move and set up a new life someplace else. If that’s what you want to do that is, and can afford the real estate land rush. …

Office Therapist | What if I hate the career I’ve been building for the past decade?

Q: After getting my MFA in creative writing, I started working in the creative agency world as a copywriter. I landed at some great digital shops and boutique brands where I got to work on big ad campaigns with great clients. But each time, I could never really find ways to bring my cultural interests together with my professional writing, and something would inevitably happen within the organization that would leave me looking for new work.

Now I’m working on a freelance magazine story that doesn’t pay that great but I really like what I’m doing. I’m also realizing that, I’m not really a manager and I don’t like managing people. As I’m looking for full time jobs again, I feel like I’m at this crossroads in my career where I’m trying to figure out what the path forward is in both my role as well as my industry. I don’t think I am a Creative Director nor fit into the advertising world. What if I hate the career I’ve been building for the past decade? …


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This story is about failure as much as it is about success. It’s a story of life’s ups and downs, its twists and turns, its ebbs and flows. This is a story about how I got rejected from college, started a band, and then found myself sitting across from the world’s top CEOs. I didn’t grow up rich, I didn’t go to an Ivy League school or get an inheritance, and either despite or because of that, I became an executive at a multinational corporation by 35 anyway.

I’m not supposed to be here. My story is about how to get lost and found and then lost all over again — again and again and again. It’s about how to find your own path and get closer and closer to naming what it is you truly desire in life while learning about yourself along the way. At many different times and under many different circumstances throughout my life, the number one question people have always asked me is, “How did you get here?” …


Jessica Lauretti

Jessica Lauretti is a Executive, Consultant & Public Speaker based in NYC.

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