On Friday, March 30 my media entrepreneurship class at Michigan State University took a trip to Detroit — our very own Comeback City!
Many have not had the chance to bear witness to its immense progress and revitalization, but I was given the opportunity to find both inspiration and motivation personally and professionally.
We kicked that brisk morning off by visiting Bamboo Detroit, a co-working space that was co-founded by 28-year-old Amanda Lewan. Only 28 short years and she has already accomplished so much. I admired how Amanda spoke so matter-of-factly when speaking about her dream and motivations for starting the business. I hope to one day feel the same type of confidence and for people to hear my passion radiating from my words when I speak about my career!
I think its great that single or groups of entrepreneurs can rent space to make their dreams come true. Space is often an issue when an idea is just starting to sprout, and Bamboo Detroit brings their ideas to life by offering a collaborative space to blossom into something so useful and beneficial to Detroit as a whole.
My absolute favorite part of the day — and where I felt most of my inspiration and motivation trike the very depths of my soul — was meeting Shanley Pearl, a girl who rules Instagram. And food. Don’t forget the food!
I listened to Shanley’s journey of how she got to where she is today— running clients’ Instagram accounts and starting her own called Hungry in Detroit, which now has 13,000 followers. She is a social media consultant and has certainly earned her stripes. I admired her passion and drive for realizing an office job was not the right fit for her and listening to herself — something that is often times difficult to do. We want to do what is expected of us even though it may not be what we truly want or are passionate about.
Rolling through the motions such as scrambling to graduate in four years, secure a job right out of college and have oodles and oodles of dollars to spend on your glamorous life. Well. No. Not always. Sometimes it doesn’t happen like that and I learned on the trip that it is O K A Y.
I stress myself out for no real reason often and I need to learn to take a deep breath and gather myself. Ask myself what makes me happy. It takes courage to leave a current position, as Shanley did, to pursue what she was both good at and passionate about. Now, she manages about 10 client’s social media accounts and receives requests from new clients daily. She even mentioned that Oreo reached out to her for an Instagram post on her Hungry in Detroit account.
This just goes to show that if you truly put your heart and soul into something, things will fall into place. I dream of the life Shanley has— eating good food, living with her dog and enjoying her life through a series of pictures that look good enough to eat and passion too contagious to ignore.
Detroit is finding its new groove — and so am I.