Last night a DJ saved my life Yeah
Cause I was sittin there bored to death
And in just one breathe he said
You got get up, you got get up, you got get down girl
~taken from Last Night A DJ Saved My Life - Indeep
Well, let me be clear, this story didn't actually occur at night, and it really wasn't a DJ, it was a podcast, but all the other lyrics apply. Let me explain.
Sometimes the reality of our financial obligations force us to make decisions that don't align with our personal goals, but there I was having to return to a temporary 9-to-5 assignment. I distinctly remember sitting at the desk and saying to myself there's definitely more to my life than being chained to this desk. The assignment paid $17 an hour and was absolutely a miserable job. But, the truth was my family needed the money so, I did what many of us do—grinned and bear it—while praying somehow we could get on track to provide for our families while not spending the majority of our waking hours at work.
On one of those days, when even my favorite tunes on Pandora, weren't going to get through this long day, I stumbled onto Arel Moodie's The Art of Likability. My husband recommended listening to inspirational videos the night before. I remember thinking it was probably a good time to use this time at work to fill my mind with something that would broaden my mind and stimulate my growth.
Luckily, for me plugging my headphones in to drown out the commotion of the office wasn't an issue at this assignment. I opened the Podcast app and began to scroll through the hundreds of options from which to choose.
That's when my journey began.
It was through the world of Podcasting that I began to find hope and believe again. Seeing all of these broadcasts that talked about self-actualization and reaching one's goals made me realize the life I desired was within in my reach. All I had to do was 1) believe in myself; 2) surrounded myself with people who had very similar visions; 3) execute on the ideas that would lead me in the direction of the life I envisioned.
Listening to Podcast help me realize I needed to build a community of like-minded individuals. And, unfortunately, I wasn't going to find "my people" in my immediate surroundings to provide me with the encouragement to escape this cubicle that I begrudgingly sat in for eight plus hours a day. I also understood in order for me to move forward down this path it was absolutely crucial that I focused my thinking squarely on my personal vision.
The funny thing is the last time I felt like that was when I was graduating from middle school going to high school. During that period of my life, I was extremely focused on my goals and while most of my friends were into the latest fashion, music trends and boys. Those interests took up 15% of my life, the remaining 85% was focused on how to strengthen my college prospects. I was only 13 and by the time I was ready to apply to college, in addition to my sports and scholarly activities, I had an ecological adventure in Brazil to add to my high school portfolio.
However, this all shifted when once I join the professional world. I found myself down the path of working my ass off to climb the corporate ladder. Even still there was always the nagging feeling that I had somehow lost my way. I was following the status quo. I stopped marching to the beat of my personal drum. I was a young, single, and professional. I was making a pretty decent salary, but I had always envisioned my life taking me on two paths: one down the path to entrepreneurship and the other as a high-powered Wall St. professional. I choose the latter and spent 10 plus years working in financial services trying to climb a ladder I knew I would never mount. Again, don't get me wrong the money was good, the bonuses were better—but, for all intents and purposes, I was lost.
Fast forward to today and I know that I still have a long journey ahead of me. But, with every fiber of my being, I have absolutely no intention of returning to the corporate world. I am acutely aware of the challenges I face as a budding entrepreneur. But, this vision is locked in my spirit. It's an overwhelming desire create a life where spending time with my children and husband is my number one priority. I want to thrive in a life where traveling the world doesn’t have to be put on hold until retirement. And, while some would say the life of an entrepreneur is risky, I believe living a life dictated by two little words, "You're fired" is even riskier.
Podcasts are quickly becoming the go-to platforms for fresh and pertinent information. So, I encourage you to check some out, particularly if you find it difficult to surround yourself with people who are doing what you want to do. By entrenching myself into the world of dreamers and risk takers I stay encouraged and focused on living my wildest dream.