Recharge Your Life With Stacy London
Stacy London is no stranger to change. On TLC’s “What Not to Wear,” she helped everyday people realize their personal style and shed their “frumpy and dumpy” wardrobes.
Throughout her career, London has embraced the concept of pivoting, transforming from media personality to podcast host to CEO/entrepreneur.
While the style icon makes it look easy, she’s aware that mastering the pivot is an always-moving target. SoFi resident career expert Ashley Stahl spoke with London on Instagram Live to share her lessons learned through a lifetime of both personal and professional transformation.
A Healthy Personal and Career Change
London has embraced a nonlinear path, but she admitted that she didn’t see her turn as CEO coming. During the pandemic, she acquired and took over operations of State of Menopause, a startup offering everyday solutions to people experiencing menopause.
London was familiar with the brand, as she had been a beta tester.
“At the time, no one was talking about (menopause) at all,” she said. The experience made her feel alone, with a range of symptoms she wasn’t even aware were connected to women and aging. That firsthand experience and the lack of care for menopause drove her search for more information. That’s when she came across State of Menopause.
The company felt like not only an answer to her health and wellness but her career journey, too.
“We’ve been taught that our lives were supposed to be linear,” London said, but allowing herself to step off the concept of a traditional career ladder helped guide her pivot from media personality to CEO.
“I’m not sure it made sense to other people,” she said, “but I didn’t do this for the perception of it.”
London had come to feel locked in by the perceptions of others and hemmed in by one industry and avenue. But that’s where strength and identity come into play. She wanted to use the media platform she’d built to show that it’s possible to shake things up.
It helped that State of Menopause’s mission is something she’s been working toward her whole career. London saw a huge need in the market to address the effects of menopause she herself experienced. And helping people feel better in their own skin? That’s something she knows a thing or two about.
“As I’ve aged, I have less concern about the most fashionable trend,” London said, “and I’m much more concerned about everyday health. I want you to look good because you really feel good.”
With that career through line in mind, London felt confident to take on an unfamiliar role. This also helped, and is her biggest piece of advice: “Surround yourself with people smarter than you.”
‘Take a Step and the Path Will Appear’
While London’s pivot may appear to have been effortless to many, she said it was challenging. The key to mastering it?
“I have an active relationship with change,” London said. “Allowing change is as much of an action as forcing change.”
People need to embrace the idea of change to open themselves up to new prospects, she said. From there, it’s about making the pivot or career jump despite self-doubt or imposter syndrome.
Still, in the time of “The Great Resignation”—all told, 11.5 million Americans quit their jobs in April, May, and June 2021—and workplace shake-ups, many people feel out of sorts with their day-to-day work but don’t know where to go from there.
“I always say, if you don’t know where to move, take a step and the path will appear,” London said. Making a move can help you understand what you like and what you don’t. Even if the career change or new opportunity is a bust, it’s a learning experience.
Without it, you’re stuck in the same place. A move gives you distance and perspective, perhaps illuminating more appealing career paths or ways forward.
A learning experience starts with being open to change, London reemphasized, but it’s also important to create change or seek new opportunities to learn about yourself.
When everything feels like it’s in flux, Stacy London embraces the experience and learns from it. As she welcomes change and encourages others to do so, she acknowledges the importance of solid financial footing.
“Your finances can make these choices easier. When you want to make a change in your own life, you have to do everything you can to safeguard your finances to make the change safely,” she said.
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