I am on a mission. If I hear of another woman over the age of 35 who has made the conscious decision to not learn or at least be aware of the changes in technology from smartphones to social media I am going to scream! These are the same women (ok there are men out there too but they’re not calling to chat) who are now competing against people 15 years younger who have skill sets and master’s degrees in subjects we never learned about in college and graduate school. Did you know you can get a Masters Degree from NYU in Integrated Marketing with a concentration in Digital. 20 years ago when I got my master’s degree the words “integrated and digital” didn’t exist in the marketing lexicon.

I have a confession, about five years ago I was one of those women who was saying “ugh I can’t learn this now, too”. 2002 – 2008 were tough years for me. My mom was killed in an accident and eventually my dad died of a combination of cancer and a broken heart in 2008. In between I continued to consult to large and small companies as a brand counselor, launched, expanded and sold a fashion accessories line and educational studio. I was very web-centric and savvy in my marketing skills but social media was one more thing I had to learn and at the time I literally could not do any more personally or professionally. On an almost daily basis, my husband Trevor would share a new social media site, APP or program and I would shut him down. That’s not for me, I don’t have time. It’s a phase I’ll learn it when it stops evolving so quickly. Well flash forward to today and that train is only accelerating.

Several years ago I had one of those moments where I was considering the next destination on my career journey and as I was pouring over job listings and articles I was FROZEN with fear that I lacked a very important skill set in my marketing arsenal. As a marketing generalist I can do ANYTHING related to marketing but going forward that would no longer be the case. I made it my mission to learn everything about social media. I googled webinars, took seminars, offered to create strategies for friends with small businesses and I even built my own blog. I refused to give up and be put out to pasture. Recently a colleague described me as “determined.” I consider that a compliment and apply determination to every area aspect of my career.

Finally, I ask that you consider the difference between “I can’t” and “I won’t.” EVEN if you can’t do something today- can you learn how to do it? Or are you making a decision to NOT do something. Be clear about the difference.

Flash forward 6 years and I was giving a lecture at a national medical related industry conference on the importance of Social Media to build a clinical practice.

Over the past year many friends and colleagues have reached out to me for guidance on how to fast track their learning and to build their personal brand online. Everything you need to know can be found online. Google is the world’s best research assistant. Want to learn more about how to brand yourself? Sign up for our upcoming Social Media Finishing School or let us do it for you Read what recent clients have said.

If you’re feeling left behind or have a story of overcoming that struggle we’d love you to share it with us here in the comments.