Fashion and lifestyle blogger Lisa Clark was definitely no overnight success, despite what some people may think about reality TV contestants. Having put in the hard yards over a number of years Lisa’s career has had its ups and downs. As a part of our campaign with AustralianSuper to help you kick start your creative career, Lisa shares with us what she’s learnt from the good and bad times and provides tips on how you too can handle whatever life throws at you.
Whilst it might be easy to consider my time on Big Brother as my career kick start, it was actually what happened after, that propelled me to the job and life I have now. Today I’m going to run you through what I consider the highs and lows of my career so far and how each moment taught me priceless lessons about my job and myself.
Prior to Big Brother I was working two jobs, one in fashion and PR and the other in a restaurant on weekends. I was tired and a little run down before the Big Brother opportunity came knocking on my door and although it wasn’t exactly a high moment for my career I was still grateful to be working in a field I was passionate about, which is so important to never lose perspective of.
Even when run down and over-worked it’s always a good idea to step back, take stock and re-ignite your drive by remembering why you do what you do in the first place: passion!
Despite what it may look like on the outside, for me Big Brother was a nice change of pace, a time to slow down, focus on my needs and wants and decide where I was going to take my personal career, as the years prior to it were tumultuous and busy times.
Before Big Brother my career highlights were working for General Pants (the best youth retailer EVER) and also having the chance to work alongside some of Australia’s best known celebrities while working at a Sydney based celebrity management agency. During this frantic time I was able to get advice from people within the industry and have mentors talk me through the process of next steps and how to best capitalise on the amazing platform a show like Big Brother was about to give me.
This type of knowledge is priceless when being catapulted into the crazy world that is post reality TV, but is also essential for anyone wanting to break into the fashion and beauty industry. I can’t stress how important it is to listen and learn from people around you who have experience and always be seeking out that next mentor or colleague to boost you along, as you never know whats around the corner in your career.
After Big Brother you step out into the unreal world of celebrity – magazines want to talk to you, hire cars pick you up and drop you off to the best events and paps follow your every move. It is a weird, weird world to grasp and although at the time I considered it a highlight of my career, in hindsight there was much better to come.
During that time, it was imperative for myself and my career that I focused on more than just my Instagram platform and attending events. There is a fine line between staying current and going to the opening of an envelope. I became picky with the events I go to (I now only go to something once a month at the most), I took on work that wasn’t always paid but was good for the soul and my career aspirations.
As I said before, this was the time when I really kick started my current career in fashion and brand management. I learnt to better manage my time and prioritise event and activities that worked in MY favour, a skill which takes time to master, but is nonetheless a vital element of furthering your career.
Since then I have been lucky enough to be able to work with some of my favourite Australian brands and be paid for the things I actually love doing which is making content. I get to travel, I guest write for a few awesome blogs, I look after other brands’ social strategy, content and roll out, and I look after my own blog and social channels. It keeps me busy and juggling everything is sometimes a challenge, but I make it work. Why? Because I love what I do and if you have the opportunity to do the same in your career, you too will find that drive to maintain an unavoidably busy lifestyle.
One highlight recently was last year when I was asked to be a part of MTV Australia and Flight Centre’s campaign called #openmyworld. I was lucky enough to travel to Paris, Rome and Croatia to create content to be rolled out over the brand’s social channels, and the ads were even run on MTV itself, which was super exciting.
After 3 weeks of filming and 12 hour days I took myself to the Amalfi coast for a little escape, which was definitely the highlight of last year. Working with a company that I have admired for so many years was one of those moments in life you remember forever and the amount I learned from such an established, professional brand is priceless.
Reflecting on 2015 there were some ups and downs but that’s life, right! I felt like I was on the back foot with the media after speaking out about a certain publication who had printed photos of me from unflattering angles and then the internet trolls that proceeded to pick me apart for these images. Although at first I considered it a low career moment for me, I am proud of myself for speaking out, I felt like I was a voice for those who every day become a target for those faceless keyboard warriors.
The incident was a massive reality check, it reminded me that being in the public eye gave people a reason to give their opinions on the way you look, reading some of those comments made me question my faith in humanity and I wondered what had driven them to feel the need to be so horrible to someone they had never met. I held my head high and watched as strangers, who had daughters, sisters and mothers rallied around me to show love and support.
My experience and mindset began to change as I saw the beauty that came from that negative experience and to anyone who is trying to put themselves and their personal brand out there publicly, I urge you to find your strength in the positive responses (trust me they’re out there!) and ignore the negative.
2016 has started brilliantly, I am single and absolutely loving my life. I have learned to let go of any of the things that are negative or not good for my personal growth. I have started training daily at the gym and mixing in a little yoga for good measure. I am up for every sunrise and I meditate at every sunset. I have more hours in the day to write, I have clarity around my topics and next steps and I am by far the happiest and healthiest I have ever been and that’s all from learning from both the high and low moments we all face during our careers.
Buckle up and enjoy the ride, as every moment, good or bad, is an opportunity to grow.