Updated: May 7, 2020
I disappeared for over a month after my campaign for Congress, I did not realize just how much I needed a rest. When I left Capitol Hill, I thought I was done with politics. But, of course I ran into one last challenge and it was a big one!
During my life hiatus, I've had time to reflect on my career experiences. I started in politics as an unpaid intern in 2011. In 2014, I became one of the youngest woman of color Chiefs of Staff on Capitol Hill. In 2019, after serving six women in federal politics, I ran for Congress. From intern to candidate, the journey hasn't been easy and I have my fair share of battle wounds.
While I'm not sure if I'll ever work in politics again, I do know that I'm resolute in championing women's leadership. Below are some lessons that I hope to share with next generation of lady leaders:
Take the road less traveled - run towards the path that others haven't. Find your niche, conquer it, and be remarkable.
Always shoot your shot - trying is the only way to succeed. If you fail along the journey, that's ok. Failure makes you fearless and fearlessness leads to greatness.
The bigger the risk, the bigger the reward - if you want more, you have to risk more. Be bold in your career and unafraid of challenges - have no regrets. Roll the die, you only have mediocrity to lose.
Work hard - there's no substitute.
Build a community - master networking & learn to ask for help. Success requires connections - talent alone is rarely enough.
There will be pain - nothing worth having comes easy. You'll lose friends, you'll be talked about, and you'll get weary. Cope by finding a positive outlet that will allow you to turn your hurts into fuel for your fire. I recommend fitness.
Move on - take nothing personal. Colleagues today, adversaries tomorrow. Brunt bridges are merely lighted pathways to the future that can be rebuilt. Cry privately when needed, but remember the show always goes on.
New Women’s Network - women must support women. We're stronger than the old boys club - we cast more ballots, start more businesses & earn more degrees. It's time to take our seats at the leadership table and to bring ALL of our sisters with us.
Ladies, it's your turn! Share your best piece of advice!