Monday, January 02, 2012

The Blank Canvas

I'm not a big risk taker when it comes to my life. I'm the type of person that tends to play it safe. I'm predictable. Most of my decisions don't shock anybody. And for most of my life I was okay with that.

But lately something has changed. As my health has taken a dramatic turn for the better I knew that the time was coming to pursue a full-time career instead of juggling whatever part-time jobs I could come up with. And while I have been absolutely thrilled to have the energy and opportunity to do more with my life, I have to admit it was a little scary at the same time too. Because suddenly there was an awful lot of unknowns and a lot of decisions facing me down.

Should I move out of town to pursue a different career than what would be available to me here?

Should I go back to school?

Should I build on what I have been doing?

Or should I pursue something else entirely?

I have to admit somewhere deep down inside I was tempted to do something safe, something secure. Like work at a bank or something like that. But as I looked out at the blank canvas of my future I realized something. And that's if I'm ever going to take a chance, this is the time. By most people's standards I'm still pretty young. I have no big obligations or commitments like a mortgage or kids. If there was ever a moment to wander away from my typical path of taking the safest route, this is it.

And so after a lot of thinking and prayer I decided a few months ago that I wasn't going to play it safe when it comes to my career. The stability lover in me would be happy to take a nine to five job with benefits and a steady paycheck, but the dreamer in me knows that's not the path I'm supposed to travel right now.

Which is why I choose to follow my hearts desire and that is to pursue opening up my own business, something I'm in the process of doing right now.

The business? Media and design. For over 10 years I've been dabbling in web design. Over the years I've built quite a few sites for people and it was both something I enjoyed and a supplement to my income. Then over the past year I've expanded into video production and that's also been picking up steam, to the point where I think if I really pursue web design and media (such as video production) full-time I can make a go of it. Of course as anyone who has worked in the industry knows, to get where I want to be requires a sizable investment in equipment, software, and the like, which is where the risk comes in.

So yes, this is perhaps the most "unsafe" decision I've ever made in my life, but it is also one that is making me feel so alive and like I'm finally where I am supposed to be in life. Even as I work endlessly on business plans and cost projections and all kinds of things that are causing me to reopen my university textbooks, I'm loving every minute of it and I can't wait to see where this goes!

This song from Michael Paynter has become my theme song for this journey, because yes, I'm learning to love the fall.