“Whatever outrageous dream keeps flowing across your mind, allow it to live inside you. Don’t deflect it, diminish it, invalidate it, or come up with some excuse for why it can’t happen. This will allow it to explain itself to you – why it’s there, what it means, and what, if anything, you should do about it.” -Marianne Williamson
Ever since I was a little girl, I had a drive deep within me to be creative. As I went through high school and college, it seemed like everyone around me knew what they wanted to do with their lives. They had it all mapped out, but that wasn’t what made me anxious. It wasn’t that they knew what they wanted to do and I didn’t because I did know. I told myself that I wanted to be an elementary school teacher and I ran with it. The part that scared me was that they were all so passionate about what they wanted, and I wasn’t. I would imagine myself 10, 20, 30 years down the line being miserable with a 9-5 job that I didn’t love. Children are amazing, but teachers are highly underpaid and underappreciated for the work they do. School systems and policies prevent creativity in the classroom. I knew I wouldn’t be able to fully use my creative side and that scared me, but I was going to do it because society was telling me that it was the right thing to do. You need to have that stable, 9-5 job or else you didn’t succeed in life.
Let me tell you, that’s a bunch of bullshit. Whoever decided that the only way someone can appear to be successful is if they take a corporate, conventional job is honestly stupid. If that’s what you want, then that’s amazing! But for me, the thought of having a conventional job for the rest of my life made me feel so unfulfilled. This is why I made the risky, somewhat reckless decision to quit my job and start a self-run candle business. This is something that I had wanted to do for a long time, but I was always too scared to because of the fear that it might fail. I’m not exactly sure what it was, but something inside me shifted two months ago and my heart was yelling at me to go for it. So, I did. I bought everything I could possibly need to start a candle business and I went to town. I made around thirty candles in one month, I designed my own labels, I printed my own labels, I made my own scents, and I had never felt prouder of myself. That one month of creating made me feel more fulfilled than I ever did at any school or job, and that told me that I was doing the right thing. There are still moments and days where I feel incredibly anxious about my decision. There are times where I think I’m absolutely crazy, or where I doubt myself, but if I give up, I’ll never know what it could turn into. Following your dreams can be the most rewarding path, but it can also be the most terrifying. The one thing I know, however, is that I’m not going to give up. I’m going to achieve.
“We spend January first walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives not looking for flaws, but for potential.” – Ellen Goodman
“And suddenly you just know it’s time to start something new and trust the magic of new beginnings.” -Unknown
I quit my job. I quit my stable, forty-hour a week job that paid me well in order to chase a dream of owning my own business, and I remember the day like it was yesterday. I came home to my loving, supportive partner crying, telling him that I felt “broken.” I felt broken and lost every day that I left the house to go to a job that I didn’t feel passionate about and that knocked me down day after day. This was the day that he sat me down, looked at me, and said “You’re done. It’s not worth it.” There was an instant wave of relief, which was, of course, followed by a massive pang of fear.
“I can’t quit my job! We need money! Will people think I’m a quitter? Will people think I’m lazy? Oh crap, I’ll actually have to quit and that’s also terrifying. I can’t do this. But I can’t keep going on like this. Shit, I’m actually going to quit tonight.” That inner monologue went on for hours, and even after the deed had been completed, it was still running rampant through my brain. Even with that dialogue attacking me, I did it. I quit my job and two days later, ordered the supplies to start a candle business. This was two months ago, and today, I launched my first candle line on Etsy. I took the pictures, I made the candles, I made the scents, I made the labels. I did it all in order to follow of terrifying, wonderful dream that I’ve had since I was a little girl. I. Did. It.
This is my new beginning. My new beginning that allows me to finally express my creative side. My new beginning that lets me come onto here and post about my life. My new beginning that excites and challenges me. This new beginning won’t be easy. I’m going to run into challenges and obstacles that I can’t plan for, but I will never, ever, look back.