It’s not uncommon to find yourself at a crossroad in your career path. Sometimes, you’re trodding along and that path may veer on its own. But what happens when you convince yourself that it’s time to get off this path and head out in a completely different direction?
That’s 2014 for my career. I was moving along comfortably in a position that was good. I had great clients. I got to play both an account role and creative role, often at the same time. Granted, there were many “arguments” between these two voices during the process. The sugared creative side wanted to go off into the wonderfully free world of creative thinking. The “plain” side was usually trying to rein things in. Thankfully, most times I was able to keep both sides happy.
But then a new third voice started making noise. It was persistent. Persuasive. Eventually it stated its case and a hard left turn was made into a sales position. Keep in mind, at the time I felt it was the “right” turn to make, but after a year in two different sales positions, I found that it left me with no fuel or opportunity to express my creative side. It began to feel like the only thing I was really selling was my soul.
Don’t get me wrong – sales is an admirable career if you have the personality for it.
But rarely did I spring from bed with the excitement of going out to cold call people. In fact, after too many weeks of “thank, but not thanks” I found myself feeling numb. But that numbness turned into an ache to get back into a creative field.
This is where my path thankfully veered back on course. The second sales position transitioned into an account/content manager position and, for the past month or so, I’ve been finding my stride back in the world of writing and helping Mom & Pop’s develop some marketing strategies for their businesses. I’m also getting the chance to write websites for various clients.
What this past year has taught me is that I have to trust my gut, not some foreign voice that seemed to come out of nowhere and drowned out the saner voices both in my head and in my inner circle. It also taught me that my emotional wellbeing is just as important as earning a paycheck. I get more satisfaction out of finding the right words to tell someone’s “story.”
Now to get back to telling my own story and embracing who I really am – a storyteller of sorts.