Opinion | Don't Quit Your Day Job... Yet.
There have been many stories and ideas being thrown around the internet and social media platforms that says any aspiring artist needs to quit their job in order to be successful in what they’re pursuing. Here’s the synopsis: Artist quits their toxic job and obtains a position that once seemed impossible – becoming the inspiration for so many others stuck in the societal mud. These stories surface, go viral, and provide hope for so many people looking for a way out. How did they do it? The only information available to us is that this person quit their job. THAT must be the sole reason they became successful, right? And while these stories hold some truth, there are a lot of discrepancies behind the smoke and mirrors. First and foremost, we must normalize working for a living. Many people rely on these jobs, no matter how mundane, to provide for themselves and sometimes for those around them. Many artists need these jobs to provide a steady source of income to continue pursuing their dreams when they are off the clock; it’s really a balancing act between working for someone else and working to further your own career. I’ve always been an advocate for using that 9-5 money to, in turn, reinvest in yourself and build a platform where you are allowed to leave a job and come out on the other side unshaken. If you are not drawing income from what you want to be doing, why would you throw away the source that is making you money? Use that job until you don’t need it. Spend that paycheck to open up another stream of income. Invest in your craft and save money when you can – so when your pay is inconsistent, you will have something to fall back on. What I’m saying here is: Have a plan. Develop it. Adjust it as life requires of it. Don’t believe that leaving your regular job will land you in a spot where you want to be. Be strategic. Always think about the next step, your next client, how you’re going to build your brand. So if you want to share your story of leaving your job, tell them how you got there. Tell them about the countless hours you put in after you clocked your 40 hours. Tell them about the ideas you jotted during your breaks. If you need that job to keep a roof over your head and food on the table, keep it. Never feel ashamed for providing for yourself, no matter what job title you carry. Learn to be content with where you’re at but always think about the future… the next move. Tune in to your intuition and when you’re ready to jump, you’ll know.