Starring: Jennifer Lopez, Leah Remini, Mila Ventimiglia
If you’ve ever felt overlooked, underpaid, and possibly that maybe it’s just not in the stars for you, then this movie will touch your soul.
Jennifer Lopez plays Maya, the assistant manager of a big box store trying to work her way up the ladder. However, with her lack of a high school and college education (she earned a GED) she continuously finds herself overlooked by corporate males who seemingly dominate the market.
Her last big disappointment comes when she is overlooked for a promotion to store manager by an outside applicant. When she questions her boss about it, he questions her educational background and tells her that the job has “requirements” that her history just does not allow her to meet. She is ready to give up.
That’s when her best friend’s son, also Maya’s godson, creates an entirely new Maya – on paper that is. He creates an astounding resume with more accolades than most geniuses and creates a social media presence like none other – all of this without her knowledge. Through this intervention she lands an interview with one of the top cosmetic companies based in Manhattan. Her brutal yet classy honesty about their product line lands her a job with the company. She goes on to prove herself as a corporate executive who can hold her own.
This movie teaches us so much about how today’s world operates. Most hiring managers today look at the letters after a person’s name and the degrees they’ve obtained before looking at what the person has to offer. I would never discourage someone from acquiring a college degree or any sort of higher learning. It gives one an education in a dedicated field and exposes them to other areas of learning that we may not seek otherwise. But remember this, many people either never had the opportunity or chose not to take it. And that is OK! They have what the world likes to call “street smarts”. Their education has been worldly and real-life training.
If you are one who did not have or take the opportunity to go higher with your education, don’t think less of yourself even if others do. And believe me, there are many who look at the letters after a person’s name and may never look at the person. A degree does not define a person. But character always will. Some of the smartest people I know barely made it through high school. What if one of those people happened to be you!
We only get one shot at life so go after what you want. Go after your dreams and desires! And whatever you do – NEVER GIVE UP! Don’t let a piece of paper and other’s opinions define your future. Be the creator of your own future! Write your own story! Live your own life! Nothing is impossible with hard work and true and total belief in yourself! And above all, never stop loving who you are!
SIDENOTE: Maya’s best friend is played by Leah Remini who, according to media reports, is best friends with Jennifer Lopez in the real world. The two of them play off each other like two best friends really would. So hilarious and natural with each other. It makes me wonder how much of their interaction was acting. Oh, and by the way, guess who went to college for only one semester and dropped out to pursue her dreams and is now one of the most successful people in the world! Successful because she’s living her dreams. I’ll let you figure that out.