Have the courage to change your mind. Take a chance on yourself.
If you feel stuck right now when it comes to your dreams, the first step toward understanding is always going to be the scariest. This is because it isn’t easy being the person who does things differently. It isn’t easy peeling away from the crowd. But if you want to create a life for yourself outside of what you’ve seen, you have to give yourself permission to do things differently. You have to take a chance on yourself. You are so capable. If you feel discomfort, or unease, and if you genuinely know that you are feeling that way because you aren’t being honest with yourself, then you have to stand up for a future version of yourself. You have to leap, even when it’s scary.
Dive into the heart of who you are, and take inventory of the things you truly want to do in life, without the pressure or the judgement of the outside world.
What are the things that ignite you in life? What are the things you wake up just wanting to do? The things that genuinely light you up? These may not be your career options, but it is important to pursue them feverishly. It is important to do the things that bring you back home to yourself, to try to fill your life with that kind of action, because you will discover what is important to you, and within that, you will find clarity in what you want to fill your life with.
That knowledge, that stepping stone, that foundation — is the basis of everything. Once you know yourself, truly know yourself outside of what is expected of you, you can start to figure out how you want to show up in life. That is your beginning.
Remember that you are on your own journey.
Do not compare yourself to anyone who came before you. Do not tell yourself that something isn’t feasible because others doubt it. Do not tell yourself that you are a failure because you haven’t achieved as much as the peers or the idols you surround yourself with. Please, just remember that none of that matters. You are working towards a life that will make you happy on your own terms. You have to be okay with living one on your own terms in order to do that.
It is okay to take your time.
We live in a generation that romanticizes hustle, and moving forward as quickly as possible when it comes to careers and our success within them. But there is no point in rushing quickly towards a life that will not inspire you or fulfill you. It is okay to slow down. It is okay to take the time you need. You are in no rush to figure out your own soul. It’s never too late to start over, it’s never too late to change your mind, it’s never too late to give up on the dreams you thought you wanted for ones that genuinely excite and challenge you. It’s never too late.
When you doubt this, remember — Oprah was fired from her first tv job. Steven Spielberg was rejected from film school. Vera Wang was a figure skater, who ended up starting to design wedding gowns when she was 40. Van Gogh only sold one painting in his lifetime. All of the greats we consider heroes, all of the people we want to emulate — they all approached their journeys from a unique timeline. They didn’t have it all figured out immediately.
When you truly do figure out what ignites you, I hope you don’t take rejection or no for an answer.
It is painfully simple — if you are met with a closed door, do not give up. Keep going, keep pursuing, keep learning about yourself and the industries or the projects that inspire you. Find your perseverance. If you cannot convince someone to open a door for you, open your own doors. Approach your goals or your dreams from a place of being malleable rather than approaching them from a pass or fail perspective. You will fail. People will say no. But it is within those failures, and within those rejections, that you will find your strength, and you will figure out what is really worth fighting for.
The world needs your unique gifts.
Keep fighting for your dreams, even if it means changing them. Because the world needs your uniqueness. It needs your talent, your art, your mind. The world needs you to take up space within that, so you can change it with the vision that you have. You are so deeply capable of doing something beautiful with your time here. Don’t let roadblocks, or self doubt, or the way your journey is unfolding, convince you otherwise.