Life, Love, and the Pursuit of… Following Dreams!
Stepping out of your comfort zone and following your dreams can be scary, many times we play the worse case scenario game in our head and allow it to hold us back. When we do take the leap, sometimes it pays off and sometimes it doesn’t, either way it’s a success! Any opportunity you have to learn and not wonder what would have been, is a success. We only get one life, so follow your dreams, take the chances, and try not to get so wrapped up into the worse case scenarios that you miss out on life!
When I started my career, I took the first job offer I received out of college. It was a Contract Assistant job which included a lot of data entry, working with customers and working on various projects. It was not directly using the degree I had just received or the perfect job, but it was a job. I knew I needed to get my foot in the door with a company and gain some experience. I worked for the company for a little over three years and although, it wasn’t the best experience or money, I learned a ton about business and myself! I left that job in pursuit of a new career path.
I accepted a job for a Staffing Company within the Twin Cities that payed much more, along with commission. I found out quickly that the Staffing Industry wasn’t for me. I did well with it financially and professionally but became so drained mentally that by the end, my husband was concerned about me. I was exhausted all of the time, overstressed and would even lose my train of thought on a regular basis. My state of mind was so foggy that I couldn’t think clearly. I realized I needed to make a change!
After just over a year in the Staffing Industry, I accepted a new job as a Project Coordinator, where I currently work. The company has its positives and negatives, as all companies do, but I’ve realized during my time here that I want more. I contemplated for months what I could do to be happy within my career and what I wanted my next career move to be.
Within my professional career, I have had my share of co-workers who have hated their job and in the same job for years. They have been too comfortable to make a change or scared of what that might mean for their families, always playing the worse case scenario game in their minds. Maybe it’s the millennial in me, but I’ve always told myself that if I’m not happy with my life I will change it, and whatever it is that is making me unhappy, especially within my career. We spend 40 hours a week at our jobs, that’s a lot of time to be unhappy.
My career choices haven’t always been easy but I have been successful in my short career. I’ve learned what works for me and what doesn’t, while working in stressful and negative environments. Although sometimes difficult, it has allowed me to learn a lot about myself and others. I’ve learned what I can handle and what I can’t, along with the work ethic I truly have. I have always seen myself working an 8-5 job trying to climb the corporate ladder, and for now, I still will to pay the bills, but I’ve decided I want more.
This past year, in 2017, I started asking myself “what else is there for me”. I had such an amazing year personally and in my professional life, I felt it was lacking. I felt like there was more to life. I had been thinking about starting a blog for about a year and have been interested in photography most of my life. Being in the mentality that I would always have a 8-5 job, I would always shoot the idea down since most photography business require very different hours than that. I doubted my ability to start a blog in fear of it failing and being judged.
I was listening to a podcast recently and the woman was explaining that when we think about the worst case scenario, many times, they will hold us back. It made me think about what my worst-case scenario would be for my situation. So I thought, well the worst-case scenario for me would be that if I start a blog or photography business, I am judged by people. That people wouldn’t like me as a person, my photos, or the content I am creating, and that I would be out the money invested into the blog as well as the equipment. That would be the ultimate failure.
However, what if people love the person I am and my photos. I can actually get paid to do what I love to do, take photos and help people, while creating my own schedule. Maybe people will love the content that I create in my blog and I could actually help someone to follow their dreams, inspire them to love themselves or simply look at living a healthy lifestyle in a different light. Maybe I could even team up with companies to share about products I love and products I have used to get me to where I am today.
I see people on Instagram who are wildly successful, who are following their dreams, doing what they love and get paid to do it, working out, trying new products, traveling the world, shopping and even eating. I would see these people and tell myself “wow, that would be so nice to create my own schedule and do what I love”. The truth is, I can, and you can!
We can be those people who follow their dreams and do what they love; as long as we don’t put the roadblocks up for ourselves before we’ve even gotten on the road. Don’t hold yourself back in anything, shoot for the stars and follow your dreams because putting yourself out there is a lot better than wondering what if! Life is so short and it’s so hard to remember that sometimes. We just go on with our daily lives and forget to actually live them.
We’re always told that after high school, you go to college and get your degree then find a job and do that for the rest of your life. If that is what you want to do, that’s great! But if not, what if there is another path, one that makes you happy and allows you to follow your dreams in a different direction. That path is one I can’t wait to explore!
At the beginning of this year, I finally decided to do it! I started my blog and am building a photography business. I’m excited to explore these new paths in my career. Who knows if they will be successful or not, but I decided I’m no longer going to be worried about the worst case scenario or what others think of me.
My husband is so inspirational to me when it comes to following his dreams, even when it has been hard at times for me to see his vision. He has been a streamer (see LadiMerk for explanation) for about three years now and is doing what he loves. No, it may not be the most profitable business at the moment but at least he is doing what he loves and following his dream. If it gets to a point where he need to take another path, at least he knows he tried and can move on from there. At least he won’t look back on his life and wonder “what if”. It hasn’t always been an easy path and hard for many to understand but he has always supported me in my choices and I’ve always said, “who am I to get in the way of someone else’s dream”.
Wherever this path leads, I’m excited, because even if my worst case scenarios come true, at least I tried. And if not, I’ll just go back to the life that I was living before, which is pretty great too. At least I’m taking the opportunities while I have the chance and putting myself out there to grow as a person and learn from my failures. I would rather do that than wonder what if!
This can be applied in all areas of your life, not just your career either. Maybe you’re afraid to get married, or start a family. Maybe you just want to change your hair color. Whatever it is that you have been contemplating the worst-case scenario, think about how you’d feel if you didn’t do it. Do you want to look back on your life and wonder, what if? Right now, take the change, follow the dream and stop working about the worst case scenario because it’s better to take the life lesson than to wonder what could have been!
Have you been playing the worst case scenario game in your life? What is holding you back? I would love for you to share!
“Courage doesn’t mean you don’t get afraid. Courage means you don’t let fear stop you.” Unknown