284 Defeating Career Fear

Often times, the only thing preventing a great business idea from becoming reality is fear. Let’s call it Career Fear, or the reluctance to alter our career path out of fear of the unknown.

Career Fear comes chiefly from our resistance to change. Any change that affects the way income is made, spent, or managed can be stressful. Sometimes even hard numbers can’t persuade us or others around us that the change is a viable option.

I recently quit my day job in a direct pursuit of happiness. I told my dad the day that I was offered a freelance gig at TubeMogul, which would allow me to stay financially afloat in the absurd Bay Area landscape. He was concerned; distraught, really. How would I survive? Pay my increased income taxes? Health insurance? No benefits?? My 401k! Food, water, shelter!! INFLATION!!??

Relax, dad. Channel some of that California chill.

So, I run the numbers by him. Dad, I’ll be making double the hourly rate equivalent than I was at my full-time job. Let’s say I put 50% of my income away for taxes, insurance, benefits, and so forth. If I put 30-40 hours in a week, I’ll break even. Except, it’s about more than that. Now I’ll work when I want, where I want, on things I’m more passionate about. I’ll spend less time doing things that don’t matter, and more time pursuing my aspirations. And I’ll be exponentially more productive, able to start work when I’m mentally prepared to and pause when I’m creatively drained.

He still didn’t buy it. If the math didn’t convince him, what else would? Well, I’m through the transition period now, and staying afloat just fine. That’s proof enough for him now, I suppose.

Defeating our Career Fear can be stressful. Whether it’s external pressure from our family and friends, or internalized fear of the unknown, we have to learn how to push past it if we want to make a significant career change.

Everyone says it, but it’s true; you have to make the leap. Failure’s not an option when you’ve got passion on your side.

(Only tangentially related to gaming/interactivity, I suppose! Sorry!)

[ Today I Was Playing: nothing :( - day 1 ]

October 11, 2015