it's Charlie G!
I had the pleasure of catching up with Charlie G (@iamCharlieG) for an interview. Charlie is a poppin' Detroit creative entrepreneur whose story provided me with the exact inspiration I didn’t even know I needed that day. This interview did more than provide content for the blog; Charlie’s sharing of her struggles, lessons and blessings spoke to my soul, making me want to continue working towards being my best self no matter what adversity arises.
What do you do?
I’m an influencer, brand ambassador and blogger full-time.
Who inspires you?
Definitely my mom because I have a traditional upbringing. She’s old-fashioned Nigerian. So she’s very strict, like go to work, be a virgin, all that. I went to school and didn’t finish. And 3 months ago I got fired and I still can’t tell her because she would disown me. I do things so untraditionally, so I want to succeed at these untraditional paths so that I can be like “I did things my way and I’m still gonna be successful.” I need her to just see it. She inspires me to keep thriving because I have to.
Talk me through your leap of faith when deciding to do your creative career full-time.
I worked my job as a full-time software engineer and was trying to blog but not giving it the attention it deserved. My manager was harassing me and I reported him to HR 3 times and they did nothing. The office desk work wasn’t for me either, so one day I said fuck yall and stopped showing up to work. I started doing my blogging and one day, they called me like “you aren’t here” and I wasn’t. I ended up getting fired.
All of a sudden, a fire was lit under my ass and I started reaching out to brands, started getting yes’s, things were just taking off. It was kind of crazy, like it all just started to make sense. That was 4 months ago, and now here I am.
Do you do work on the weekends?
24/7. Everything I do is for me. I reach out to brands, do videoshoots, everything. Sometimes I wake up at 2am on a Tuesday, sometimes on mid-day Saturday. It’s 24/7 non-stop.
What activities do you do to unwind and recharge?
Sleep as much as possible. I like that I’m so busy, but I’m tired. And because I’m in this industry, I have to be social. So I go to events that I’m interested in, mingle with like-minded people, have a little wine, all that. Then I go home and watch TV, sip a little wine and relax. And of course sleep as many hours as I can.
What quality of yours do you believe makes you and your success spark?
I have a very unique understanding of visuals. I understand quality and how visuals should be produced. Plus I’m relatable, real and honest. I’m brutally truthful in everything that I say and do, so people want to vibe with me. As long as you’re honest, doing your dope shit and producing quality work at the same time, why not?
What would you say are the 3 keys to success for a creative entrepreneur? Using only 3 words.
Start, consistency, network
What do you love most about the Detroit creative scene?
I love that we’re on the uprise and that we’re willing to work with each other. Back in the day, people were so self-focused and self-fulfilling, but now it’s a community. It’s new, and us women are really genuinely excited for each other. It makes me feel so good. You’re not doing it for yourself; you’re doing it for your community. It’s not a competition. When we come together, we all are even stronger and more successful. It’s love.
What’s something you wouldn’t know about you from following you?
I suffer from depression and anxiety really badly, and I don’t appear as such. I try to talk about it as often as possible now actually. Because you never know. It might help somebody. I just want people to know because they’re like “you look so happy” and I’m like no, I struggle. You think I live a fabulous life, but I don’t. And if I can crawl through the struggle, so can you. I think it’s important to make space to talk about that, because we’re all out here going through it.
What’s the one thing you wish you could go back and tell your younger self pertaining to your dreams?
Don’t give a fuck or worry about any of the shit going on around you from the people, to how awkward you are, to the ridicule. Because none of that is going to matter. And you need to believe in yourself.
Use one word to describe your current feelings about your dreams.
What do I take away from my time speaking with Charlie? The road to our personal treasures is grueling. No one gets a shortcut or easy pass to the life of his or her dreams. But with enough perseverance and faith, miracles will happen with time.
In just 4 short months, Charlie went from barely blogging to being a creative powerhouse locking down contracts and income from multiple sources. She still has a long way that she would like to go, but what is clear is that she is traveling the path God wants her on, and is being blessed beyond belief even through her pain. If she can crawl through the pain, then so can you. Your dreams are attainable.