I wish I remembered having more conscious and intentional thought about this topic, which ended up being my biggest focus in 2017. My career took massive leaps in the last year and anytime I have the opportunity to share with anyone what my “secret” (not that I actually have one, but if I had to choose) is, I always tell them, letting go of fear.
When I decided at the beginning of 2017 that I was going to stop giving a shit about what other people thought and let go of that fear of judgement, I’ve never experienced something so liberating. Suddenly I was free to network and grow and share what I did with pride, rather than shyly introduce myself and mumble what I do.
Maybe this isn’t an issue everyone experiences with their career, but fear was a major factor for me and letting go of it truly was life changing. The following points are just a few of the positive changes I’ve noticed about myself throughout 2017 and I hope they happen for you too!
You’ll feel completely liberated
This wasn’t a feeling that came right away, but something I started to feel more towards the end of the year. Sometimes I would just sit there and think back on the experiences I had and the people I met and realize how much of that wouldn’t have happened if I wasn’t able to overcome my own fears. Realizing you only have yourself to thank for these things will make you feel like you can accomplish anything.
What used to seem impossible, suddenly won’t
If you would have asked me this time one year ago if I’d be a full-time freelancer, I probably would have laughed and said no. It’s not that I thought it was impossible (kind of though), I just didn’t know how I was going to get there. Once the fear disappears, all you have is possibility and new paths that lead to your goals.
You can meet so many more people
You never know who you’re going to meet and opportunities that might come from it. That’s not to say people are only good for their connections, because that certainly isn’t the case. However, I’m a very firm believer in the well-known phrase, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” Collaborate, partner up, learn from each other and the people you meet will become your greatest resource.
Worrying about others judging you will go away
This was also something that did not come instantly, but I feel that worry less and less in every month that goes by. I’ve spent an embarrassing amount of time in the last two years worrying about what other people thought of the career I was pursuing. It’s taken what feels like a hundred years to be able to say that I don’t care what anyone thinks anymore. This feeling alone has made all the struggles worth it.
What all of these things add up to is feeling free. Feeling like you can accomplish anything. I’m not a confident person by nature, but working on this part of myself professionally has made me see that people really can do anything, even if it seems impossible and crazy as hell.