Excelling in their career is pretty much everyone’s goal (no one goes into work hoping they do a bad job), but what happens when those successes are feeling scarce, like you’re spinning your wheels to nowhere?
Well+Good editor Eva Medoff has totally been there (and overcome it!), and she’s offering up her tips for getting out of the rut—whether it’s at work, in your social life, or in your closet (re: that all-too-familiar “I have nothing to wear” to feeling).
Her career trajectory hasn’t come without its share of setbacks (namely: two layoffs, one difficult manager, and several years of feeling powerless over her career journey) before finding success at W+G. But through it all she’s been rocking her fearless independence, her jumpsuit collection, and her New Balance kicks.
“Seriously, if you’re feeling stuck: I feel you, and I’ve been there, and you’ll get through it.”
“I had to reroute my course multiple times throughout my career, and definitely am no stranger to feeling lost,” she says. “The difference is that I now have the distance to understand that I have a lot more power than I previously realized, and nothing—really, nothing—is the end of the world. Seriously, if you’re feeling stuck: I feel you, and I’ve been there, and you’ll get through it.”
Scroll down for her advice on how to crush it in the office—from how to manage work-life balance to what to wear in the office.
On finding success in your career
What advice do you have for people who hope to have careers in media, or who are trying to change career paths?
So, so much advice. Starting interning as soon as you can, and treat your internship like a job. If you want to move into a particular area, get experience any way you can, either through interning or freelancing. Do your research, show that you care about the organization and the particular role, and act like a human.
This last one is the biggest: The more you can act like you’re having a conversation with a friend—rather than an intimidating authority figure—the more you’ll show hiring managers who you actually are. I place enormous value on feeling like a candidate is someone I can actually talk to.
What do you recommend to people who are struggling to find their own path?
Look at your circumstances as an opportunity to rewrite your narrative. Ask yourself what you’re good at, and what blend of skills makes you unique. After years in editorial and copywriting, I was able to combine the two in my current role because I realized my background—however zig-zagged—was an asset.
What would you count as some of your main career successes?
My career is super important to me, but it’s not the way I assess myself as a person. Allowing myself to be less rigid has given me permission to look at my career with new eyes, and see successes where I hadn’t seen them before. Developing true friendships with my colleagues, feeling like I really nailed a brainstorm, and hitting “publish” on a piece of content I’m particularly proud of all feel like a success to me.
On practicing work-life balance
What does work-life balance mean to you?
If I’ve learned anything, it’s that it’s crucial to steal moments to disconnect when you can—so I aim to be resourceful with my time. I always make a point to get out of the office during the day and go on a long walk (and talk to my mom on the phone TBH, because that basically counts as therapy). For real: I put holds on my calendar, and everyone knows not to schedule meetings with me while I’m taking a break.
I also read about a book a week, which shocks some people, including me. The secret is always reading on the subway—it turns any loud commute into a private storytime—and before bed.
I have a very lengthy bedtime ritual, including always, always taking a bath (my co-workers find it hilarious that I’m an exclusive bath-taker), slathering my entire body in almond oil, and reading for at least a half hour. It’s nature’s melatonin (although I do partake in melatonin, too—because sleep is life).
What are your tips for maximizing your summer, despite juggling a busy schedule at work?
I try and schedule one big trip toward the end of every summer, that way I have something to look forward to all season long (I’ve read that studies say anticipating a vacation is actually more rewarding than taking the vacation itself—and I kind of believe it).
If you can’t make it happen this year, create a designated savings account just for travel. Investing in experiences is something you will never regret—and remember that road trips count, too. My husband and I spent our honeymoon in an RV in southern Utah, and it was absolutely everything.
On crafting your personal style
How would you describe your style?
Crafting your style is really all about wearing what makes you feel most comfortable and like yourself. One particular signature that I’m known for around the office is my love of overalls, jumpsuits, and rompers. They look really confident and put together when you just rock them unabashedly—and luckily, W+G is a workplace where leggings, sneakers, and yes, jumpsuits are totally fair game.
Like it or not, the way we dress offers visual cues to the world about who we are. Wearing things that might be considered a little out there is basically my way of signifying that I define my value to myself, and I’m not concerned about what others might think of me—even when wearing what my husband calls a mechanic jumpsuit.
How can shoes define an outfit?
I’m at the stage in life where I can no longer deal with heels (and don’t understand why I ever did). I’m all about sneakers. To me, a classic sneaker can literally make an outfit. It gives you a pop of sportiness and looks super cool when paired with something unexpected, like a dress—or a jumpsuit, obviously.
SHOP HER SHOES
Photos: Tim Gibson for Well+Good
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