My career started at 18 when I accepted an internship with a local Non-Profit Organisation while I was in my first year of studying my Bachelor of Marketing. Since then, I always felt ‘ahead’ of the rest of my cohort. At the time I was juggling uni, my paying job and the unpaid internship. It did get a little stressful juggling everything, but getting every job since this opportunity was relatively easy.
I attribute a lot of my success on landing that internship, as it really got my foot in the door marketing-wise. The industry in Brisbane was quite difficult to break through as a recent graduate, so I am thankful when I did graduate I had a couple of years of marketing influence already behind me (a lot of it was administration level) but it was a lot more than the others applying for the same jobs as me.
Fast forward a few years and I’m a Freelancer about to jet off around the world. Although chasing your career, chasing the next promotion, chasing the next pay rise is and was instinctive, it’s not for me anymore. I’ve learnt that my career will always be there for me to go back to if I want it. It’s not something that will disappear. People use this as an excuse not to travel. People use their career as an excuse to not do what they really want to do.
Conversations I’ve had with friends quickly go to “I can’t, I have my career to think about…” or “I’ll just set up my resume and stay in this job for another couple of years so I have something to come back to…”.
I understand the logic, I really do. But I can’t help but feel frustrated when people use this as an excuse. My thinking is, there’s never really a perfect time to pack it all in. Will you forever be saying “…in a couple more years”?
I found a quote on Pinterest last week and it really struck a chord for me and it went a little something like this “We weren’t born to pay bills and then die”. It’s a tad dramatic, but its bluntness is what some people need.
Life is there to be lived. Your career isn’t going anywhere. Stop using your career as an excuse for not doing what you want to do. We don’t stay young forever and you will not be sitting in your retirement home in 60 years time talking about the time you did an awesome marketing campaign for some company that went insolvent two years later. You will be talking about that camel ride across the Sahara Desert or that time you camped in a tree in Germany suspended metres in the air (yes, this is on my bucket list).
If you need even more motivation to get up and do something noteworthy and mentionable, watch The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. That will get your butt in gear!