What do you want to be when you grow up? As children, we were always asked this question, and we used to think that getting what we want is as simple as wanting it. As adults, we realize that it isn’t as simple as that. We have to make decisions, stand by them, and work hard to get what we want. There are times when we don’t always end up where we planned, but then we stop resisting and just accept what life has dealt for us.
So, you work hard and spend years honing the skills that you need to become better at the job that life has thrown your way. You climb the ladders you need to climb, overcome the obstacles that are in your way, and get up after you fall.
Now, you’ve reached your goals. You are at the peak of your career, but somehow, you feel like there’s nowhere else to go. You are financially secure with a comfortable lifestyle, but you’re bored. You are dissatisfied, restless, and unhappy. You want more. You crave something different.
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”
— Albert Einstein
It’s time to take a step back and reassess what it is you really want out of life. What do you want to do now that you have grown up? Maybe it’s right there in front of you, but you have been too busy to notice. Maybe you know what you actually want to do, but you are scared to take that leap. Be the quarterback of your own life. Don’t get stuck in one place — go wide!
Leaving the life you have always known and straying from a familiar path is indeed scary. Bear in mind how hard you have worked to get to where you are. This time, you are no longer an innocent child but a wise adult armed with knowledge, experience, and skills you have carefully harnessed through the years. You have what it takes to succeed at any endeavor you wish to undertake. Never doubt yourself, but always stay open minded to learning something new.
So, you finally take the leap to go for what you have always dreamed of. You have freed yourself from the shackles of your nine-to-five job. Now, it’s time to set new goals for your new mission. Set your priorities with you at the top. This is what you have always wanted, and it’s time to actually go for it! Go ahead, invest in yourself.
Whatever it is that you have decided to finally work towards, always keep in mind that combining your interests with a profession is never easy. This new passion you have discovered and chosen to work for will remain an idea unless you persevere. As you may already know, the world isn’t just made of rainbows. It can be nasty and mean. But don’t give up.
“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”
— Calvin Coolidge
Keep trying to do what you think are the necessary steps to achieve your new goals. The processes and techniques you may have used in your past job may not work the same way it did for this new set of goals. Give yourself room for error, and learn from the mistakes you make along the way.
You are once again back to learning the basics of your new field. Don’t be shy to ask questions from experts in the niche you’ve chosen. Join groups and communities. Make new friends and enjoy the process. People from online groups and communities can be surprisingly supportive. Yes, there is competition — this is something that will always be present in any field of work or business. But consider it to be healthy competition and learn from it.
There are a lot of other people who succeeded at transitioning from a nine-to-five to a freelance work or business. Get inspiration and motivation from these people. If there is one thing in common among all successful individuals, it’s perseverance.
“Making your mark on the world is hard. If it were easy, everybody would do it. But it’s not. It takes patience, it takes commitment, and it comes with plenty of failure along the way. The real test is not whether you avoid this failure, because you won’t. It’s whether you let it harden or shame you into inaction, or whether you learn from it; whether you choose to persevere.”
— Barack Obama
Life is a journey, and the only thing constant in this journey is change and hardships. With it comes new opportunities and potential for growth. You have already enabled yourself to pursue happiness, and because you are finally doing what you love to do, the rest will follow. Embrace this freedom you so deserve.