As a fairly new member of the Manto team I’ve found the first 5 months of my role to be an exciting and diverse mix of work that has seen me take on new challenges that, ultimately, have left me with a feeling of pride and self fulfilment. However, like many people still on the path to establishing themselves, I have my days when self doubt kicks in and I become my own biggest critic.
Upon leaving university I struggled like many on my course to find work in the media industry so ended up taking a job in retail to help pay the bills. I became miserable in this role as I knew in the back of my mind that I should be pursuing what I was passionate about. I believe a big part of me lacking that initial drive to push for a media job for so many years was a doubt in my own work and the output from my time at university. I was sort of happy with the work I had done but felt it didn’t come close to the sort of cool and innovative videos I believed my peers were making. I got so bogged down in worrying about what others were doing that I never really stopped to consider the new skills and experience I had gained and so when I graduated this got put on hold. As Theodore Roosevelt once said – “Comparison is the thief of joy” and serves only to make you unhappy.
I got to the point where I was so fed up I needed a change. I knew I would only be happy if I really pushed myself to achieve the career goals that were always sat at the back of my mind and so I moved to London where many of the creative companies are based in the UK. I must have sent out a hundred job applications and only got a handful of responses telling me I wasn’t what they were looking for. Many of us know the frustrations of job hunting and how it can affect your motivation and I once again became victim to my own self doubt. During this time I had to constantly tell myself that I do have the skills and enthusiasm to be an asset to these companies and it wasn’t until several months later that my patience finally paid off.
It’s been 5 years since I got my first real media based job and I can proudly say that in that time I’ve helped produce some very cool stuff. I’ve also made content that makes me cringe when I look back on it. I have learned, however, that it’s important not to dwell on what i’ve done but to take this experience and focus it towards the next project. Comparing myself to others only serves to build negativity as we tend to only see the positive surface of their work. I’ve found it helps to remind myself of this every now and then to forgive my own imperfections and be more forward thinking.