We all know her.
We all love her.
I don't think she needs much of an intro, but today I bring you Mackenzie from Design Darling to share her Leap of Faith story. I stalk her blog regularly for inspiration, and I'm beyond excited for her e-Commerce site to launch in March. Her ambition and courage is extremely admirable, and I know she will be successful at whatever she does.
What did you major in in college / what was your first job out of college?
I studied French language and literature at Bucknell University. I haven't spoken a lick of French since I graduated but it was important to me to study something I loved. A week after graduation this past May, I moved to San Francisco to intern for Rue Magazine. At the end of the summer, I moved back home to work for a PR firm in New York.
How long did it take to realize it wasn't for you? What were the initial signs of "help, get me out of here!"?
I left both positions around the two month mark but truthfully I knew in my gut much earlier that I wasn't happy (Rue because I was so far away from my family and friends, PR because I was working long hours doing something I hated). Steve Jobs said, "For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself, 'If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?' And whenever the answer has been 'no' for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something."
What was the first thing you did after you left your job? Scream?
Honestly I had a hard time believing that I'd actually done it! There were a lot of late night conversations with my parents and my boyfriend about what to do next. Once I decided that an online boutique would be my dream come true, I got to work and haven't looked back!
What sort of "homework" did you do before turning your passion into a career?
I emailed my favorite bloggers, explained what I was thinking, and asked for advice. It was comforting and inspiring to know that so many of them were in the same boat, getting ready to launch businesses in tandem with the personal brands they had developed online. It has been such a blessing to bounce ideas off one another and cheer each other on from one milestone to the next!
How long have you been working for yourself?
I became self-employed in November, founded Design Darling LLC in December, and will launch my e-commerce boutique on March 1!
What is the scariest thing about doing what you did?
Not knowing whether it will pay off! But the support of fellow bloggers and readers has been exceptional. I wouldn't have the courage to be launching a business this early in my career without their daily encouragement!
Do you ever regret leaving your day job?
In all honesty, not for a second. That's not to say that it's all been smooth sailing but I'll take adventure over stability any day. Life is meant to be lived!
What is your #1 piece of advice to people scared to follow their dreams in fear of failure?
Start a blog to hone your aesthetic and connect with like-minded people. Reach out to people you admire — I think you'll be surprised at how many of them are willing to help. Surround yourself with people who have your best interests in mind, whether that's family and friends or an online community. And most importantly, do what you love and love what you do!
I'm inspired by bloggers, books, coffee, color, entrepreneurs, fashion, flowers, good handwriting, interiors, magazines, and more! Thank you, Julia, for having me! xx
Holy gorgeous. Isn't that spread beautiful?? Thanks for the inspiring story Mackenzie! I know you will be a HUGE success.