Mentor. Inspiration. Role-model. These are some of the kind words I've received from my peers and I don't take it very lightly. At the age of 22, I've led countless of public seminars, appeared on national television, and spoke in front of thousands of people. While I would say that I've done fairly well for myself, I know very well that I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for the love and support I've received throughout the years.
But there are days when I would wake up and ask myself why I do what I do. Is it for the fame? Is it for the prestige? Whatever the reason may be, I know for certain that it's not for one thing and that's money. Truth be told, I have not received an official paycheck up until this past summer. (Thank you, ABC). After all those countless hours on set and at the studio, I still drive home with an empty wallet. So how was I able to support myself without asking from my parents for financial support? Well, I would take on weekend freelance projects. Lots of them. It's tough and at times unsettling, but if you're trying to break in the same industry, you would know that not everyone's going to make it to Hollywood alive. Only the hungry will. And if you can't already tell by now, I am fucking starving.
Success to me has always been about the journey that I embark on not the destination. Whenever I do lose sight of my motive or pursuit, I would think about how far I've gone and how closer I am today than I was yesterday. Although this may sound a bit strange, but I absolutely love every minute of my struggles. Each of my experiences, whether good or bad, has taught me to rise from the bottom and become an even more brilliant, more resilient woman. So as I begin to congratulate my best friends on their new job offers and accomplishments, I also start to paint a clearer picture in my head as to how I would like to live my life. I'm not afraid to stand alone. I've chosen that route plenty of times and have never once looked back (unless I'm reflecting like how I am now). There is a thrill in choosing the route less taken. In a way, it pushes me to think outside of the box and learn how to overcome my fears while simultaneously break my comfort zone. That's the rebel in me talking. Correction, that's the hungry me talking. There's also a small little voice in my head that tells me to take that very first job offer and go for an administrative position. I will then have to spend eight hours a day answering other people's phone calls and organizing their schedules. "This is ____'s secretary. How may I help you today?"
The thought of living that life scares me. Why? Because I know that my passion is elsewhere. I know I want to be my own boss, but at the same time, I have to start somewhere. The door's already open and my foot is right there. However, what are some of the steps I need to take now? More importantly, will they do my dreams justice?
I don't know. I don't have the answers just yet, but I'm working on it. How I was able to overcome the low parts of my life has a lot to do with the bigger voice that's in my head. The one that's telling me that I am capable of so much more than the average. That at the end of the day, I am someone's mentor, someone's inspiration, someone's sister, and someone's friend.
So I've turned down job opportunities. Ones that looked impressive on paper, but would have left me feeling unfulfilled. Yes, I did try to explore some of the options, but I knew that had I taken the job, I would be even further away from where I need to be. At this point in time, I want to believe that for once my heart and head has aligned and that if I listened closely to the Universe's calling, I will be one step closer to the finish line.
Call me picky if you like, but I never want to live a life knowing that I've settled less than what I've deserved. But who's to say that that's a bad thing? You can't pick on a girl who knows what she wants.