Yesterday, I got a wonderful email from a Haute Travels follower who is wrestling with the notion of leaving the world that offers financial security to one that truly makes her happy. So she asked me… How I did it? When I first read the email, I wasn’t sure if I should give advice to someone that I didn’t know. But as a Pisces girl, I threw caution to the wind and told her my story.
Here’s what I said…
I really appreciate your support for Haute Travels... and I love feedback!
Well, to answer your question I thought about leaving television years before but I didn't because I was in my comfort zone... perhaps fear of the unknown played a role. But after a series of things that took place I was able to leave the business and explore something new. There was a bigger plan at work for my life and every excuse to not do what made me happy disappeared when the job was no longer an issue.
I wanted to write for magazines so I did some research and pitched a travel mag that targeted African American travelers. They loved my pitch and my life as a travel writer was born.
But, I didn't rest there because freelance writing didn't offer the financial rewards that I deserved. So I started to consult with a multi cultural advertising agency as a PR, media and communications expert and coupled that with speech writing. Working as an independent consultant gave me the freedom that working in an office didn't... time to travel. Keep in mind, I had no experience in PR or advertising but I brought value as a seasoned journalist, great thought partner and writer to their world. I learned their language and used it to build my skill level and professional experience.
If you're seeing a pattern that's because at the heart of everything that I do... I'm a story teller. I just discovered new and different ways to reposition and reinvent myself using skills that I already have to do things that feed my creativity and my love for travel... while affording me a lifestyle that makes me happy.
I've discovered that as I stay true to myself, my loves and my sanity... I attract people who support, inspire and encourage my growth. People who bring the best out of you will become more valuable than you will ever know. Their strength will support you when you feel like giving up. But first, you have to take a leap of faith and everything falls into place. Just believe in yourself and keep going.
Think about what you love to do and whether you have a skill level that supports it. Create a plan and seek out opportunities that encourage calculated risks. Don't abandon your responsibilities but follow your heart and take your brain along with you. Create a life that's free of things that weigh you down like debt or unhealthy relationships.
You may encounter obstacles but they don't have to derail you... instead use them to make you better and smarter about how you'll make your dreams come true. I'm still learning and in some ways starting over since I relocated to Atlanta. But I'm still in the game doing what I love to do and making it work. I dream bigger because I don't know how not to. There are so many people who believe in me and see me doing things that even I had not imagined but it's possible. I have friends who just don't encourage me but invest in my dreams.
I wouldn't say walk away from your life or job... but rather reposition yourself so that you can live a life that makes you happy.
I hope this helps... take care.
"When the heart is at ease... the body is healthy." Chinese Proverb
Are you following your passion? How did you do it?