Rebel is a word I never would have used to describe myself when I was growing up. I was the complete opposite – I handed in my homework in time, I never stayed out pass my curfew, I never got detention, I was never told off by teachers, I never questioned anything, I never spoke out… you get the gist.
I just never felt comfortable enough to speak up as I just wanted to avoid making a scene and please everyone, regardless of what I really thought. This continued as I moved into my first role after university. I had to input data and it just didn’t suit my personality. To make matters worse, I was regularly singled out for being terrible and I was the only member of my team that wasn’t allowed to listen to music during this mundane task. So I sat in silence whilst the rest of my team listened via their headphones. I lasted 12 months before my parents intervened and told me that they had noticed a change in my behaviour. As dramatic as it may sound now, I was broken – I stopped enjoying life and I was just going through the motions – it was a vicious circle of endless misery.
Handing in my notice without having a job to go to was probably the first rebellious act I’d ever done in my life and I’m not going to lie, it was pretty exhilarating.
It was around this time that something clicked and the ‘rebel’ in me got a bit of a nudge. I booked a few weeks holiday to reflect and understand where I wanted to go in my life! When I came back you could say I had a bit of an epiphany (I know it’s such a cliché but true) and I told myself that I wasn’t ever going to allow myself to feel like that again. I was also determined to never work in organisations where they made me feel like I wasn’t worthy enough to be there. So using this new found confidence, I set about channelling my energy to work at a career I felt I could add value and make a difference, not only to others but to organisations as well.
Fast forward a few years and I’m proud to say that the rebel in me has been unleashed and I’m now a fully-fledged member of the #commsrebel committee. My rebel side has helped me speak out when things are not right (even when everyone else is nodding along), or challenge the Statas Quo when needed. If something didn’t fit with the values of the business or was morally corrupt then it’s allowed me to call it out – in a respectful way. On a side note, being a self-proclaimed rebel is not an excuse to use your rebel status to be aggressive or plain rude. Being a rebel should not stop you being kind, generous and considerate.
Finally remember to channel your inner rebel to your own personal circumstances as well. If something isn’t right in your career, work or you’re generally not happy then don’t wait for it to change itself, unleash your inner rebel and make the change you deserve!