And what a big question it is!
In the context of the author, she was using her career, her responsibilities, and her insecurities as excuses to not pursue the thing that was eating her alive inside. Namely moving across the country to New York City and writing the very book I was reading.
Why do so many of us ignore that voice coming from deep down inside us? I was recently in conversation with a friend, we’ll call him Paul, who was thinking about making a career change. Not a complete right turn, but quite different than the status quo. After talking about it for about 30 minutes and asking a bunch of questions, I got the strange sense that the change might not actually accomplish what Paul was after. So then I asked,
What would you do if the chance of success or failure didn’t matter? If money didn’t matter?
Of course, those success does matter and money is important, but I was curious to here the answer.
“I would be a sports agent!”
Not what I was expecting, but I immediately saw Paul’s demeanor change. He sat up straight, started smiling, and spoke with a vibrancy that had appeared from thin air. But just as quickly as the excitement had arrived, it began to retreat behind a wall of worry.
“It’s a cottage industry where you can only break in if you have connections… I do know one agent, but he would never help me.”
This happens so often when we are our own worst enemy, when we self sabotage and prevent ourselves from chasing dreams.
But there are so many external factors that will try to get in the way! Maybe the industry IS difficult to break in. Maybe you don’t have the right experience. But one thing that is under your complete control is the passion and determination with which you decide to pursue whatever it is that you really want.
And what’s interesting to me is that those same fears and doubts show up with smaller questions just like they do with the big ones. It’s not just questions about chasing your dreams or finding your purpose. It happens at work and at school and in our interpersonal relationships. So many difficult conversations are never had and so many important questions are never asked.
We hope to empower people to ask those questions!
-Jeremy & Jake