I STILL CAN’T BELIEVE I AM WRITING THIS PIECE!! AHH, WHAT A DREAM COME TRUE!
So before I proceed, I just have to say, THANK YOU to every single one of you for making this new chapter in my life possible! As y’all have probably noticed, my blog posts have been brought to a minimum in the past couple of months but that is because I’ve been working my bootayyy off in other realms to ensure this plan of mine panned out. Eek, still feels surreal!
So, lets go back 4 years ago (senior yr of college). I remember seconds before walking the stage, I said to myself, “I have no idea what the hell the next 4 years hold, but let’s effing gooooo” and moments later walked that stage with so much faith and happiness. But once the euphoria settled, I found myself job searching and unemployed in a coffee shop one week later. For those 8 long hours, I remember casually scrolling through my social media and seeing what felt like 95% of all my peers post offer letters to their first big-girl job! I was #Jelly . WHAT THE HELL WAS I GOING TO DO?!
All throughout college, I held internships at some of my dream companies, but 0 full-time offers were made. I studied sociology and communication and had a focus in broadcast journalism. My passions lied specifically in sports broadcasting and entertainment reporting. And although I loved my university, I realized early on that my school did not provide the same resources or tools to those pursuing this specificity among the communication major than they did per say, those pursuing marketing or sales. So although discouraged, I had to remind myself that this was the not so traditional career path I decided to pursue.
One month later, I was working at my dream network! I was ecstatic! BUTTTT, as most of my friends were beginning their careers making 65K +, I was damn near surviving. I had to pick up two other jobs to live close to comfortably. WHAT HAVE I DONE?
But again, this was my passion. I was well aware it would take YEARS before I was making anything close to that and even longer before I was in placed in front of the camera…but it felt worth it to me! I wanted to give people an escape from all the ugliness going on in the world. I wanted to connect and engage with an audience, as I had in my college work. But as entry level as I was, those desires were obviously not being fulfilled. I felt so much fire and passion but had the inability to channel that energy.
SO I had an epiphany. Clearly, my energy was being misplaced. If the industry was not going to pave the way for me, I HAD to CREATE one for myself.
AND THIS IS WHERE THE JOURNEY TO THE UNTRADITIONAL ROUTE BEGAN.
After two years in the entertainment industry, I realized I could still work towards all those goals of connecting and “broadcasting” certain messages but through a different way. And in all honesty, a girl had to survive. I remember my mom telling me to think long term. She said, “although I know this is what you want to do, you are barely affording rent. Maybe you have to put your dream on hold and work in a higher paying industry for the time being.” And I remembered those words pained me. But through a shift of perspective, I realized I could still fulfill all those things but on a much micro level. I then had the idea of a podcast. I could still work a BS decent paying day job but have the ability to pour my passions into something I believed in after the 9-5. And that’s exactly what I did. Luckily at that time, my then bf had all the equipment to begin one. But life happened, shortly after, we broke-up and boom, here I was, sitting in an office cubicle, working in an industry that was so far removed from what I studied, left with with that same unfulfilled passion taunting me.
NOW WHAT? WHAT CAN I DO RIGHT NOW TO CHANNEL MY PASSIONS AND TRUTH?
In that exact time, my dad unexpectedly passed away and I was left with this massive hole. My education and career meant everything to my dad. But here I was chasing this dream that felt unattainable, but even worse, working in an environment I loathed. At this point, I felt like an absolute failure. Now, several years out of college, I was not happy, not fulfilled, unsure of my career path, all while seeing my college buddies living their best lives, most in managerial positions within their companies, and not to mention…making the type of bank I could only dream of! Where did I go wrong? Did my decision to follow my dreams actually screw me over in the long term? Should I have just succumbed to a field that I hated from the beginning to at least propel me in any sort of direction professionally? I KNEW I WAS DESTINED FOR MORE, UGH!
These are questions I also projected onto my family and friends. My best friend was the person who nudged me. She said “you continuously asking all these questions will not get you anywhere. DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT.”
That next week, alllthatjas.com (this blog) was born. The day I finally began drafting my very first blog post, this feeling of overwhelming peace flushed over me. It almost felt like this was God’s and the universe’s way of saying, “I GOT CHU.” And even though, I was writing to my 1k family and friends on social media, that ability to FINALLY speak and channel all those years of pent of energies, was the most liberating feeling I had felt to that date.
Ugh, I remember sharing my post to my co-worker in that office and she said, “whoa, I’m actually really excited for you and want to read more, do you have any more content?!” And in that moment, I realized that exchange alone was the type of connection, I’d been longing for.
For that next year, I continued to share myself with my 1k audience. It was my only form on expression in a very monotonous unfulfilling corporate world. There were countless amount of days where I would look around the office thinking, “so many of us are working tirelessly towards a goal that isn’t our own!” Yes, we were crunching numbers every day, doing what we were told to do, but were any of us even fulfilled or most importantly happy?!
And although we saw our parents work these jobs, following the American way, by which if you work hard, you will then in turn have equal opportunity to become successful, did that mean we too had to follow this?
My personal beliefs led me to believe that the answer was a huge, fat, NO! Just because we are raised in cultures that teach us we must conform to a certain way of living, does not mean we have to continue in live in such a damaging vortex.
And every morning, I would read the following quote by Steve Jobs and remind myself that this was only temporary. A more fulfilling life lied ahead…
“When you grow up you tend to get told the world is the way it is and your life is just to live your life inside the world.
Try not to bash into the walls too much. Try to have a nice family life, have fun, save a little money.
That’s a very limited life.
Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use.
Shake off this erroneous notion that life is there and you’re just gonna live in it, versus embrace it, change it, improve it, make your mark upon it.
Once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.” – Steve Jobs
Every morning I felt inspired by his words to make something of myself, because that to me was the only way to get out of a world I hated so much.
Once bae and I began dating, I shared my dreams with him of one day, being able to work for myself and give 100% of me to issues and content that were actually fulfilling. (You can read how we began our journey in depth here: How to *Honestly* Balance the 9-5 With a Side Hustle ).
Ah, one year later, here we are. I’ve connected with so many souls and it all started here…sharing my unfiltered voice and experiences with the world. This was what I was aiming to do… my entire life! This is where I am meant to be! I love it with my entire heart and soul!
A few months ago, I realized I had come to the point where I just had to make that leap of faith and decide what I wanted for my life. I just felt like I was living a lie. I’m going into a space where even though I was physically present, my heart and soul were else where. I, day in and day out had this tugging on my heart which kept leading me back to this…my platform. HOLY CRAP, CAN I ACTUALLY DO THIS FULL-TIME? CAN I LET GO OF THE STABILITY OF THE FAMILIAR AND EMBRACE THE UNKNOWN?!
QUEUE THE ANXIETY, Y’ALL!
I had toyed around with this idea for years really, if you think about it, but naturally we are all wired to go with what feels safe. But remember y’all, “safe” can actually be detrimental. After all these struggling years, my mom understood my decision and that meant everything to me! And I’m sure if my dad were still here, he would too!
So I went in with the confidence in my abilities and self to be up front with my employer and ask for their support during this time. I honestly was a mess, as I thought they would laugh in my face and close the door on me. But, I feel they entirely blessed that they gave me the opportunity to transition out, so this is where we are at.
I seriously can’t believe I am manifesting all that I’ve ever dreamt about! I wanted that connection, that ability to channel my energies to what mattered to me, and no longer submit to a work culture that I felt was damaging on the human soul.
SO THE HOW:
*And this will look different for everyone*
- DOES THIS WORK SET YOUR SOUL ON FIRE?!
- Yes, it mostly stems as a hobby, but make sure this is what brings you joy and fulfillment. If you can picture doing this for many many many more years to come, that is telling the longevity of your passion.
- TRUST IN YOUR ABILITIES TO SUCCEED:
- Believe in thy self, sis! Have the understanding that you are a powerful force. You have the ability to manifest literally any single thing you envision for your life. Be your #1 fan! Know in your heart that you were created for something greater, now it is just your job to unfold what that looks like.
- REVISIT YOUR RATES:
- If you have not already, create a media kit! This is where you pitch your rates to brands. But if you are thinking of transitioning into full-time blogging, you most likely will have to adjust your rates to your needs.
- Calculate how many collaborations you would need to match your current salary or at least what could get you by.
- BE WILLING TO SACRIFICE:
- If your job does not support you in this decision, are you willing to leave the stability of your bi-weekly paycheck and pick up random gigs across the city?
- Are you willing to be open to the uncertainties and judgements that come along with self-employment?
- HAVE AN EMERGENCY FUND:
- If shit hits the fan and blogging is slow for an entire month, would you be able to still pay the bills?!
- I’ve read that having 3 months worth of funds is a good place to start thinking about this.
- SURROUND YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE WHO WHOLEHEARTEDLY BELIEVE IN YOU.
- We only got time for those who see our greatest potential. Half ass energy and support is a definite NOOO at this stage. If this means to cut your circle in half, by all means!
- HAVE DISCIPLINE!
- This is no longer a hobby, boo! This is your livelihood! Nourish it, give it more life every single day, and in this way, I truly believe it’ll give you that and then some long term!
- UNDERSTAND THAT IF NOT NOW, THEN WHEN?!
- If you have a dream but you are allowing your fears, anxieties, family, friends, etc. etc. to hold you back, you will NEVER propel to where you were meant to be. There will be never be a “right” time. Ask yourself, “if I died tomorrow, could I look back and see that I was in pursuit of the life I had envisioned for myself?” JUST DO IT, BOO!
AHH, so I know this was long AF so kuddos if you are still here! I just know there are so many of us out there waiting on some sort of sign. If you are reading this and need the nudge to take your life to the next level, LET THIS BE IT! Trust me y’all! This is scary as hell for me, but I am so damn proud and grateful that I am manifesting all that I have struggled for and dreamt of. All those years of unfulfilment, feelings of inadequacy, defeat, comparison, dun, dun, dun…..SHE HAS FINALLY ARRIVED! I think it’s sooooo important to realize this is YOUR LIFE! There is no right way of going about it! Your path may look different than every single one around you, but sis, (or bro- lol), live your best life, #noragrets!
I love you all and THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for letting me live out my wildest dreams!!!! XOXO, Jas ❤