Enough with the bad news for right now. I don’t want to keep being a downer, when I really am at heart a total optimist! You can’t keep me down for long.
One thing that’s really risen me up is feeling success is within my reach with my writing dreams. I can see it IS possible. I CAN do this.
For the last few months, I’ve been throwing myself into learning more in-depth about my trade(s). Checking out books from the library. Purchasing books. Reading blog after blog after blog. Reading online magazines. Talking to people who are already doing what I want to do.
If I were to ever allow myself regrets in life, one would definitely be putting my dreams and goals of writing for a living on the back burner for the last few years. I’ve coasted along too long, and today I look around me and realize how much further I could be in my career if I’d only gotten more serious a lot sooner.
I can’t, however, beat myself up for long. Instead, I am throwing myself into my trade with a sheer determination that I’m not sure I’ve quite had since I wanted to make sure I got accepted into Texas A&M University.
I didn’t have a contingency plan then, and I really don’t have much of a contingency plan today. I got in then. I’m going to succeed today.
Back then, I did my homework. Today, I am doing my homework.
It’s slowly starting to pay off! I’m SO honored to now be a part of the Blogher Publishing Network as well as writing for Blissfully Domestic. I’m an active contributor to Road Widows, and I have a separate review blog as a work in progress that I hope to go live with in the next week. I have a secondary “business” in the planning stages, and I’ve signed up with a couple affiliate networks. I’m soon going to be going after clients, submitting guest blog posts, and looking for every possible way to further myself.
This is a no-holds-barred fight to see my goals and dreams come true.
I am open to advice. (Except the kind that goes something like, “Don’t do it!” Too late, I’m past the point of no return.) I’m going to continue “stalking” a lot of other bloggers and authors for every kernel of advice and information they are willing to drop along the way.
It’s a twisty road I find myself running along full speed. In places it been well trodden and smooth. In others, its going to be a jungle. I know this… I’m prepared for it. I can do it.
The phrase “to thine own self be true” has grown to have more and more meaning for me lately. I am quickly learning not to apologize for following my own heart and doing what is best for ME.
Believe it or not, I think this is a fairly hard concept for people to grasp. I’ve said for years that we live in an “all about me” world; one filled with everyone wanting someone else to take the blame for mistakes or everyone wanting to take credit for successes. (I even blame this mentality for the fact that no one uses turn signals anymore!)
However, when it comes to our personal lives and pursuing our heart’s desires, I think so many fall down. We accept that we’re going to fail at our dreams, so why try? Or, almost worse, someone else thinks we should do something else, so to make that person happy, we follow their dreams for us. In other words, we live to make someone else happy. Be it a boss, or a parent, or a friend, or a sibling. Perhaps its a craving for approval that sends so many down this path of unhappiness for self.
I’ve been following the recent upheaval in the college conferences for the last week. Being an Aggie, my concerns are completely focused on what Texas A&M will do when all the dust settles. I am finding that it comes down to one of two things: does A&M go with Texas wherever they go to keep that rivalry alive, or does A&M do its own thing.
Now, I am the biggest fan of traditions. I always believe that we should honor our past, because it has gotten us where we are today. Traditions add an element of stability in an otherwise tumultuous world. Texas A&M thrives on traditions. Our biggest one is probably the rivalry with Texas. Our War Hymn focuses on it. Growing up in Texas, you were either a Longhorn or an Aggie. End of sentence. Those other schools, the ones you might go to when you graduate high school, really didn’t matter. You were still either an Aggie or a Longhorn.
So why is it I sit here today thinking… I would really love to see A&M take its own stance. For the last few days I’ve said, “I’d love to see A&M go to the SEC, but I want the rivalry with Texas to remain alive more.” And I do want that rivalry to continue forward! But as I read the reviews of the changes. As I look at all the cards on the table. My gut screams for A&M to take its own stance. Go the SEC. Take a chance at being greater than, “Texas’ little sister in College Station.” We’ve always held ourselves to a higher standard, and we’ve always claimed to be our own man. Now is our chance to show that to the world.
Perhaps I feel it that strongly, because I find myself at this crossroads myself. And I’ve already chosen the path less traveled.
It’s not a secret. I’ve said it before in here. I’ve said it to friends and family. My husband and I have been financially strapped for awhile now. And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked at job sites, or how many times I’ve lain awake at night thinking I should just go find the first job offered to me. That thought always gives me a sad pause, because I know my dreams. I know my goals. And I know giving in to the path of least resistance is not the way to make those dreams happen. Choosing the quick fix doesn’t take care of my family down the road, nor does it make me truly happy.
So, I have opted to run forward with my dreams full speed, and as a result I find those dreams running ahead of me. I’m just trying to keep up!
Anyone who has been on my blog on the last couple of days may have noticed a few glitches. Its because I’ve moved my blog to its own domain name (http://www.musicianswidow.com) and, as a friend said, “You’re a brand now!” I guess I am! I’m super excited about all the possibilities that lay ahead of me within all of this. I’ve also found my confidence in my design work, and its no longer a case of me admitting what I can’t do. Its a case of me saying, “I can figure that out. Lets do it!”
The other night, I was writing an email out to a friend. A “what are you up to?” kind of thing. And as I talked about my dreams and goals, they no longer felt so far away. They felt like they were right here with me. I’m ON that path! I felt an excitement and joy professionally that I’ve not felt in far too long.
I’ve run into people lately that I’ve had the distinct impression weren’t happy with my choice to strike out on my own. I didn’t fit the mold they had imagined for me. Or perhaps I’m just realizing how very pessimistic some people can be. Either way, I walked away from my interactions with these people holding on to an even more determined stance.
I refuse to apologize to anyone for striking out on my own. I refuse to fit someone else’s mold.
I am the best possible me. And at the end of the day, that’s all I can and want to be.