The one piece of controversial career advice I would tell my younger self
I am immensely grateful for my career experiences, but there is one thing I would do differently – and many people won’t want to hear it
My work as a writer has led me to more than fifty countries. I have held the hands of the wounded and dying, uncomfortably sipped tea with terrorists and warlords, smuggled myself across countless borders, trekked mountains on horseback, rowed boats across rivers, and even borrowed motorcycles in hostile nations to get to the bottom of the story. I’ve laughed, danced, and cooked with women from many cultures, and I’ve cried myself to sleep tucked into a dark and strange place, trying to process it all more times than I can remember. I feel more at home on a dank floor telling stories with women and children who have lost everything but want to give you everything that fills their hearts so much more than the elite crowds that circled my “home” lives spanning Los Angeles, New York, and Washington DC.
It sounds whimsical and romantic – and sometimes it is. Other times, it is pure hell. But there are endless lessons you learn from the pain that no classroom can ever teach you. I would not take a moment of this back. But as a new mother climbing into my late thirties, I would do one hugely glaring thing differently – or at least accept it as an important factor as I venture into my forthcoming life chapters.