Bad Decisions and Wrong Turns: One Girl’s Guide to Career Success

Jasmine Friedl
Oct 20, 2018 · 6 min read

We’ve all gotten career advice. Work hard, don’t settle. Ask for what you want. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness; it’s a sign of strength. Don’t be afraid to take risks. Dress for the job you want. Love what you do.

Yada yada yada.

For those of you who have gone after career growth with all that “tried and true” advice, and it’s failed you; I’m here to tell you there’s another way. The following advice is composed of methods I’ve implemented effectively in my career, and I’d like to think these are exactly the things that got me to where I am today.*

  1. Avoid risks at all costs
  2. Keep your expectations low
  3. Know how much is out of your control
  4. Wait for good things to happen to you

Sound appealing? I thought so. Read on.


1. Avoid risks at all costs

Take the first job opportunity that comes your way, no matter what

Keep a short term focus


2. Keep your expectations low

Convince yourself you’re doing the thing that makes you happy when it really doesn’t

Work until you’re stressed to the core; it’s normal


3. Know how much is out of your control

Acknowledge that the deck is stacked

Give in to the imposter syndrome


4. Wait for good things to happen to you

Avoid putting yourself out there

If success finds its way to you, relax into it


*Oh hey, and the reason these have all worked for me is because I’ve crashed and burned from all of them and had to pick myself up and dust myself off. I’ve made steps when I should have made jumps and jumps when I should have made steps. And despite a few skinned knees and a bruised ego, I’ve learned, and I’ve grown. And you can too.

Jasmine Friedl

Written by

Director of Design at Udacity, Dabbler in Writing, Champagne Enthusiast