“What do you want to be when you grow up?” A question each and every one of us has been asked. Depending on the age, the answer can range from firefighter to ballerina to astronaut (my personal choice) to cowboy. But as we get older, that question went from daydreaming to goal-making. From what do you want to be to what will your purpose be? As I look back 10 years ago to when I was graduating high school, I can’t believe that at 17 years old I made a choice that has set me on a path at least for the last 10 years and undoubtedly more.
I was very lucky in the fact that what I chose stuck. Not only did I study it in college but it’s my profession now. That’s not always the case. And truthfully, although I enjoy my career now and I am so incredibly grateful for what I’ve accomplished so far, I don’t know that this is what I want to do for forever.
Let me give you some back story.
At 17 years old, I decided that I wanted to work in the film industry (more on this decision later).
After making that decision and after a few bumps in the road, I attended the film program at the University of Colorado at Boulder (Go Buffs!)
I interned at a local news station in Denver and loved it. It was the only kind of consistent production in Colorado at the time.
Because I had that internship, I had to have an advisor. I had the wisdom (but didn’t know it) and guts (definitely knew it) to ask the head of our film school. A very tough but fair professor of mine. He later gave me the advice to skip grad school and go straight for the job.
So I did. And it was terrifying. Especially with people telling me that I would never use my film degree. My degree currently sits proudly framed on a wall in my living room in my apartment in LA. I often look at it and it gives me courage all over again.
So how did I get from “what do you want to be when you grow up?” to choosing film as my career path to working for two of the largest entertainment companies in the world? And more importantly, what does that have to do with you?
I wanted to share my story because it was far fetched. I didn’t realize how far fetched until I was actually living in Los Angeles and realized how many kids come here trying to make a dream happen. You need to know that it happened for me. It can happen for you.
When I was trying to figure out my career path, my mom asked me a question more important then, “what do you want to be when you grow up?”. She asked, “what do you love?” The answer then and the answer now was, “films.” It was that simple.
We are given one life, one chance.
We might as well spend it doing something that we love.
So I’m here to tell you to chase that dream life you’ve always wanted. And it’s okay if your dream changes. It’s also okay if you don’t have it all figured out. Life isn’t a conveyor belt. But my best advice would be to figure out what makes you happy the most and place everything else around it.
Then, pray. Pray about your choices and your future. Pray for guidance and for peace.
As a very important side note, the answer to “what do you want to be when you grow up?” does not have to have anything to do with your job. When we’re kids, the question encourages us to dream big but as adults, it can be daunting if we don’t have the career stuff quite figured out.
I’ve always wanted to work in the entertainment industry but my more important goals are the ones that have nothing to do with my career at all. It has to do with my purpose.
I want to make an impact.
And I want to be a good person and to show the love of Jesus through the way I love others.
I want to be there for the people I love.
Figuring out your life and your career is really important and is also really hard.
Purpose does not equal a career.
So whether you have the job or not, think about what else is there? What else can I contribute? Where can I make a positive difference?
I hope my personal story of finding my purpose has helped you gain perspective. If you ever want to chat, I’m here.
Know I’m praying for you,