#ERAOFSELFMADEWOMEN || CHAPTER 1 || Sharon

April 27, 2018

#ERAOFSELFMADEWOMEN || CHAPTER 1 || Sharon

 

Women who redefine the rules. Set benchmarks and leave them behind. Fight life struggles with their chins up. Women-mothers and women-pioneers. Those who open a new life chapter without ever looking back. In our new series #eraofselfmadewomen, we celebrate the brave, exhilarating, unstoppable women who dare to chase their dreams. One life journey at a time, sit back and learn the real lessons of their lives. 

 

                                                                               

 

 

Welcome Sharon Sprague,
our very first and very brave #selfmade heroine!

Sharon Sprague for ERA81

Sharon, tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m Sharon Sprague owner of The Ok Workshop (coaching women entrepreneurs on branding) and Ok Silly Ink (funny paper goods company). I’m a big fan of bullet points, so here’s what I look like in bullet form:

  • Entrepreneur, Maker, Writer, Branding Coach
  • Over 20 years of ad agency and in-house corporate marketing experience
  • Buzzfeed featured maker for Ok Silly Ink
  • Toy content writer for Leap Frog and Wild Planet Toys
  • Was a Senior Creative Writer for Disney, Walgreens, Universal and more
  • Former sketch writer at The Second City, Chicago
  • Avid speaker and love to teach
  • Fur momma to 3 spoiled dogs
  • Believer in do good, get good! 

Favorite life quote: “A colorful life yields colorful ideas.” Now I’m not sure who wrote it, it may even be something I made up, I don’t know. But I like it. I’ve lived it and live it and love it. 

 

What is your day like?

My normal day is more abnormal than normal. Ha!

What is Sharon's day like

What was your proudest moment since you started The Ok Workshop?

I feel most proud when I see people in my Facebook group helping other people with their questions and concerns. It’s humbling to know I helped bring them together and even more so, when I hear people repeating things they’ve learned from me. I love it when it sinks in. Another super proud moment happens in my coaching calls, when someone tells me they had an “ah-ha” and never really thought about things a certain way until they talked to me. I know in those moments that I’m doing something positive for them and something good for my soul.

Filling out worksheets during one of The Ok Workshops

Do you think your education played a significant role in defining your career? 

Yeah, pretty huge role I believe. I studied both Musical Theatre and Business & Communications. I believe I use the skills learned in both of these areas in everyday scenarios. At the heart of it, I’m a storyteller. Understanding the mechanics of story from my years in theatre has proven to be invaluable. My studies and training in business, specifically in advertising, has helped me immensely when it comes it comes to building a brand, creating content, developing a strategy and so much more. Being a creative with a business background is a great combo, I believe. You can come up with the ideas and you can sell them. I’m happy with the decisions I made in college.

 

When you feel down, how do you bring your motivation back?

I step away from my tasks and do something for my soul. Read, draw, walk, play with the dogs, shop, treat myself to lunch out. Learning to be better to myself has been tough, because I thought it showed weakness. I thought it was my way of procrastinating. But I’ve learned to know when I need to take a moment and be good to me. Sometimes just changing my scenery is all I need, so off to the coffee shop to write is what I’ll often do.

How Sharon brings back motivation

What is your biggest struggle now? What are you doing to figure it out?

Prioritizing. With the two businesses, there’s a ton to do—product development, outreach, content design, promotions on social media, editorial planning, finances, and so on. I’m always feeling like I’m a few steps behind where I need to be and that can just weigh me down. I’m trying to get better at making my lists, and not just daily lists, but the weekly and monthly ones too so I can use those to plop INTO my daily lists. Without my lists, I just feel like I tinker and “do things” but never really move the needle.

 

What is the best piece of advice you have ever received? How did it help you?

My former boss at Disney once said, “Attitude is everything.” I’ve seen it first hand in the workplace, people younger and older, who are just missing this fundamental skill. The world doesn’t owe us anything, and sometimes things just aren’t fair. What matters is what you’re going to do next—what do you do when adversity is present. Complain, moan, vent, run? I’ve learned through my career to see every challenge as an opportunity. To learn something new—about a subject or about myself. Sometimes I may not love the challenge, but I’ve come to learn that I’m always a better person for having sucked it up and getting to the problem-solving.

 Attitude is everything

When shopping for apparel and accessories what style and features are you looking for?

I feel like my style is in a process of evolving right now. I used to be all black and grey and very mainstream and I’m finally embracing color and pattern and finding my own style. Trying to stay away from what everyone else does, if that makes sense. I love statement jewelry, classic lines, and I’m not a fan of being vampy or sexual in what I wear. I like my outfits to have personality, even a smile. I’m not a heels girl, so will always love a great sneaker. I do love bringing retro, nostalgic looks into a more modern style.

 

What is usually in your work bag?

My mini-backpack carries my Wacom tablet, tablet stylus, iPad pro, Apple Pencil, gum, notebook, pencil/pen case, Mickey and Minnie wallet, a flashdrive, lipstick, hand lotion, sunglasses, glasses, and a random coupon.

What is is Sharon's backpack?

Follow Sharon's work at:

The Branding Coach - theokworkshop.com

The Make You Laugh Louder Maker - oksillyink.com

 

Loved Sharon's story and want to share yours? 

Awesome! Please email us at team@era81.com ❤️

Want to read more stories? Follow us on Instagram @era81_official





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