Today, a very cool person who is shaping up to be a truly amazing and inspirational mentor gave me some great advice. She started her own company years ago, and had to figure out how to leave the relative security of her job to do it. She said, "You’re in my thoughts! It can be a difficult time. I always look back on that time in my life wishing I could have told myself that it ALL WORKS OUT and I would have believed it. Ha ha. Then I would have enjoyed it more."
And she's right. My life hasn't been as chance-y up to this point as it could have, and I feel like I've been handed an incredible opportunity to start fresh. I went from the safety of my parentwhite's house to college (and lived at home). I worked hard to land the Hallmark internship and got it. And was offered a full-time job immediately after. I went through my senior year of college with my shiny new job all lined up. I still worked hard in school, but I was in freakin' art school—and looking back, I played it too safe. I worked my @** off for 18 years at Hallmark and learned a lot—and met the best friends anyone could meet anywhere. No regrets! But... also, not much risk. Even leaving the company was less of a risk than staying.
Any discomfort I have now is because this "risky" circumstance is new. Not knowing what is coming up next is entirely new! And up to this point in my life, I've succeeded in part because I've been dedicated and hardworking... and in part because there wasn't much risk of failure anyway.
Today I made a choice that makes me nervous. I mean, it really could set me back if it doesn't lead to something. It feels a little irresponsible even. I've avoided feeling this way my whole life. And I am telling myself, because I believe deep down in my heart that it is true, that it ALL WORKS OUT.
I don't know where, when, or with whom I'll be working. I'm sitting here looking around my house and wondering where I will be in 2 months, in 6, in 12. I'm not trying to get comfortable with that feeling, because I think I need to feel discomfort for a while. I need to trust and close my eyes and step off the ledge and see where I land. I've never truly failed at anything, and the thought that I might fail to find something meaningful scares the hell out of me. But what scares me more is playing it too safe and risking regret.
Today Jim N bought me lunch and talked through a bunch of this stuff with me. He and I hadn't gotten together in a while, and I was curious what his reaction would be. He had a sparkle in his eye as soon as we jumped in to the conversation, and he shared similar thoughts he's had himself. He told me all I needed to know... that I needed to go for it. God, I'm SO excited to get going!
And coincidentally, dear Rich sent me this quote today. I'd heard it before, but his timing was impeccable. I've been getting better at living this way over the last 6 years, but it's time I hit the throttle. Buckle up, Buttercup!