This is an inspirational place to awaken curiosities to what gives us authentic joy.
In a world of comparison, change, anxiety, and competition come here, take a rest, let’s be curious and creative together.
About Me (Amy Fulford)
MY MOM HAS NEVER UNDERSTOOD COMPLETELY WHAT I DO FOR A LIVING.
Not that I blame her. It’s not so cut and dry. But my career stemmed from a love of magazines. From the young and impressionable age of 14, I started reading SEVENTEEN magazine. Is that magazine around anymore? I’m probably horribly dating myself.
But I loved this magazine, especially the BACK-TO-SCHOOL issue that came out every August. Or, if you were lucky enough to have a subscription-like me, in late July. It was huge. It took both hands to grab the plastic-wrapped mega-issue and race into the house, climb the stairs two at a time to reach my bedroom and plop stomach-down on my bed. But I didn’t open the pages then. I was too excited. I wanted the anticipation to last. Kind of like how I preferred my peanut butter and jelly sandwiches cut in half with one side bigger than the other. So I could eat the small half and look forward to the big half.
Anticipation is joyful.
Anyway. I used to go through those magazines page by page and I’d believe all the ads. The shiny hair, the smooth skin, the clothes that make you look preppy and polished. So it was only natural that I went to college in Chicago for Marketing. I did four internships. One with a fashion photography studio, one with a graphic design business and lastly two semesters with a local advertising agency that had BUICK as their client.
I went from scrappy intern doing all the grunt work to a Senior Account Supervisor with 8 people reporting to me. That took about 7 years and boy did I learn a lot.
Sidenote: I chose to make a career my focus in my 20’s. I could have “been married” but I decided that I wanted to marry for life. I already had friends getting divorced. So I decided that I would forge ahead in my career in advertising, have fun and see how far I can go and wait for the right person.
Knowing what you want is joyful.
I went to work for J. Walter Thompson when I was 29 years old. They were on the 32nd floor of the Bloomingdales building on Michigan Avenue. Totally badass view of Lake Michigan. I had an office with a view and a credenza. A credenza….
I could smoke in my office which I did because I thought it was cool. I know otherwise now. I was the Account Supervisor in charge of the Wisconsin Ford Dealers and I managed their marketing budget of over $40 million dollars. They also liked to travel with their wives on trips. We went to the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica and Cabo San Lucus. We also went to some great places in Wisconsin like Lambeau Field and The American Club. I advised them how to sell more Ford F-150s than their competition. But most of all, I learned how to create lifelong relationships with my clients. Two of which I work, for now, years later.
From there, I moved to Dallas, Texas. I still hadn’t met the man of my dreams and I was now 32 years old and well, lonely. My parents got divorced after 35 years of marriage and after being the perfect role models for marriage for me. Not anymore. I was sad and confused about what was important in life. I moved to Dallas because I could be closer to my mom and sister. Midwest girl in Dallas, Texas. What an eye-opening experience.
But I got a great guy. One worth waiting and an answer to many prayers.
Funny what a late-in-life shakeup can do for you.
Change in the midst of great sadness can be joyful.
Now, listen up here. It still took me a while. My career took a surge forward and I had the time of my life. I was with Cadillac for a while where I endured a truly evil and crazy boss. I quickly got promoted out of that agency to Vice President of Campbell-Ewald and to the Chevrolet account. This job I stayed in for 11 years and two agency changes. During this time:
- I was the Management Supervisor for the South Central region and had 14 people reporting to me and handled 32 cities in the region to manage the Chevy advertising business. I also had a $60 million dollar Chevy Truck budget that I managed on my own. That meant planning all the media – tv, radio, print, outdoor and wonderfully crazy sponsorships like getting into NASCAR and country music festivals. We even created our own TV show.
but then came Facebook. And blogs.
- I tested the waters by putting together a program called Mommy Madness for the launch of the new Chevy Traverse. It involved bloggers, Facebook, Twitter, missions, Morning Shows on TV, training for dealerships on how to market to women and a test drive incentive. I’m so proud of this homegrown program. We did it in Dallas then Houston, then Kansas City. I then took it to 28 cities. Keep in mind, this was 10 years ago!
- I hired someone to take over my position and I created a new one for myself at the ad agency. And I won the Interpublic Chairman’s Award which is issued to only a select group of people across hundreds of agencies across the globe. And a bonus. I brought more revenue into the agency when I wasn’t even supposed to be doing that! I was made Senior Vice President. La Dee Da. #timeoflife
- After running that program for a few years, I was the third person brought over to the new Chevy agency as the VP-Director of Social Media. I was the only woman in the executive committee. I had strong, confident leaders as my mentors, bosses, and cheerleaders.
People supporting people is such a joyful thing. Especially when they are your boss!
Then at 38 years old, I met Robert. Or ROF as he is affectionately known. I knew he was the one. He could deal with me. He makes me laugh. He is such a supporter and brings so much to our marriage. We met in Texas. Moved to Detroit. Moved back to Texas and now live in Madison Wisconsin. We are DINKS – Dual Income No Kids. Which is the dumbest of all acronyms.
WHAT IS THE JOY SEEKERS COLLECTIVE
Life is too short to be too unhappy for too long. Emphasis should be on what gives us all joy, not stress and anxiety. Join the collective if:
- You want to learn how to strive for joy, not perfection
- Making new friends has gotten harder as you’ve gotten older. You want a place that respects your privacy but encourages you to share
- Actionable advice on seeking a well-rounded lifestyle with things and people that bring you great joy
- Love Dogs. Not really, but thought I’d throw it in there
- Want a place to connect with older women who are wiser than you
- Want a place to connect with younger women who aren’t your kids
- Wish to be exposed to unique “things” like recipes, music, shops + travel