We’ve been receiving a ton of emails from our readers lately about the struggles of following your dreams and how to make that next career move. It’s ironic because I’ve been going through my own personal internal battle, so as we turn 6 this month, I figured I’d share a little about my journey over the last few months and what I’ve learned from it all.
At 5 years old, I knew I wanted to be a storyteller. As I grew older, my dreams changed from wanting to be an Actress and Producer to wanting to be a TV Host/Journalist and Producer. Those dreams then pivoted me into becoming a Blogger. And when business was slow, I had to work for my family in real estate.
Millennials are really the first generation to pursue careers they’re passionate about. Unlike the (hardworking) generations before us, most of us refuse to stay in work environments that are not healthy. We enjoy being our own boss and/or creating a company culture that makes going to work FUN.
But what happens when following your dreams just isn’t working out for you anymore?
I’ve recently felt the dreamer in me die a little. For the last 10 years, I have worked as an on-camera personality. Thankfully, there were many moments I consider to be successful. The reality is that I’m tired. Straight up exhausted for lack of a better term. My peers are tired. Most of us are frustrated and, to be frank, jobless at the moment or not booking big enough jobs to sustain ourselves. I’ve seen my myself, my co-hosts and my friends go from major jobs to nothing in the matter of minutes. It’s a scary time for creatives across the board.
Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE my job and all of the little side hustles that come with it. None of us would work this hard if we truly did not enjoy it, because trust me, the money isn’t worth the headache 90% of the time. That 10% though…it feels like magic. So we continue chasing that high the 10% once gave us.
It’s a double edged sword. The older we get, the more stability we crave. Yet, what about all the blood, sweat, and (literal) tears spent building the dream? The days of going against my community norms, fighting for a dream that was and still is considered “taboo” in the world around me, hours spent waiting for that casting call that was promised but never came…I feel like I’ve been on a rollercoaster ride taking me to the highest highs and lowest lows in the last decade. Where do all of those years go and what do all of us have to show for it? A highlight reel, relationships with Hollywood figures, and some Instagram photos of our proudest moments?
And now many of us are arriving at the same crossroads.
Do we pivot? Do we give up the dream and reroute? Or do we stay hustling, waiting for that moment that is going to “make” us?
I’m honestly not sure. Life happens and sometimes causes us to re-evaluate where we’re at. Dreams can and do change. It’s okay for them to as you evolve and change from within. I’ve been sitting at this same crossroads over the last few months, wondering what my next step will be.
My decade-long dream of being an award-winning TV Host is changing. For awhile I thought it wasn’t okay to feel that way. After hours of phone calls with the people closest to me, I realized it’s not giving up the dream. I gave and still give 200% to everything I do – it’s just a reroute. My friend Ashley tells me everyday that it’s okay for our dreams to change or evolve, we’re just made to feel like it isn’t. Sometimes all you need is to put it on hold and come back to it at another time. We have options.
It’s okay to sit with yourself for a minute and look within. Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box, think unconventionally, and adapt. Change can be good. Change can be freeing. Trying something new or adapting to a new way of doing things can catapult you into better positions. The biggest lesson I’ve learned from all of this is that it’s okay to not know. It’s okay for you end up wanting different things than you once did.
Be nice to yourself in times of transition. Talk to your peers. Stay honest with yourself. And most of all, take your time. Your gut will tell you when to make your next move.