I don’t know what your dream job is, and this post has to do a lot with modeling and intagram-ing, but I think it’s applicable to anyone who wants to start with anything.
Not too long ago, when I finished my bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology, I’ve decided that I can not do a regular 9 to 5 job and that I’ll figure my own way towards happiness and freedom (I always put these two in the same basket).
At first it seemed unrealistic and a little outrageous. But of course, where the attention goes, energy flows and soon the opportunities for sports modeling stated popping out. I just reacted, responded to every job that suited me and soon came to the point when I realised that this can be my full time job for this era of my life.
(I am present in this so-called modelling scene for almost 10 years now, but I never did it full time as I do it now.)
“What do you actually do for work?” is a question I receive a few times a week. I am mainly a sports model and social media influencer, working in the sport and outdoor industries. I visit incredible places and share some amazing experiences, I am working with brands who I believe are making awesome stuff and with photographers who are beyond inspiring and creative personalities! I’m learning a lot from them and that makes me super grateful at this point. It’s my dream job, but it’s a lot of work, takes a lot of energy, you kinda need to be always ready and never sick
Pursuing my dreams over the past few years, I have learned a few things:
<3 IT’S STILL WORK EVEN IF IT’S YOUR DREAM
“When you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.”
I disagree. Just because you love something doesn’t mean it’s not hard. Just because it looks glamorous from the outside doesn’t discount the more difficult moments. Passion and drive will never fully soften stress or worry. It’s still work, and as a result, it still feels like work. When you do what you love, you’ll work many days in your life– it’ll just be more enjoyable.
<3 IT’S OFTEN HARDER THAN 9-5 JOBS
I struggle to think of a time in my day when I don’t think about my work. I think about it A LOT. I have many projects, I have photoshoots, I edit photos for myself, I try to come up with new ideas and trips… I spend a few hours a day doing things for my businesses that I don’t necessarily get paid for– reading, researching, making connections, writing blog posts like this one, answering non-job-related emails. And I don’t have one boss to report to– instead, I have a dozen of them, all with different needs. It’s more complicated. It takes more energy. Frankly, my 9-5 was way simpler and easier.
<3 YOU HAVE TO BE YOUR BIGGEST FAN
Believing in yourself is part of this job. This is on you. It’s on you to make it happen. Even if you don’t believe in your success, act like you do. Find a new confidence and let it lead you everywhere. Tell everyone about your thing. Be proud. And please, identify yourself by whatever you are trying to be– nobody hires people who are “starting out” or “trying to be.” Your title is whatever you decide it is. Believe it.
<3 IT TAKES DISCIPLINE
If you want this to be your job, you have to treat it like a job. Be on time– even if you work from your couch. Have a schedule. Know your calendar. Have boundaries. I don’t believe in the “hustle till you die” strategy. I believe that we need to re-charge sometimes and we need to stay in touch with ourselves when we are working toward something big. Discipline means you know when you are working and you know when you are not working. But when you are scheduled to work, make sure you actually work. And when you are working, always always do your best.
<3 THERE IS ENOUGH ROOM FOR EVERYONE
This is so important. It’s easy to look at everyone else in the field you want to be in and to decide that there simply isn’t room for one more. BUT THERE IS! Nobody can create exactly like you can. I remember a few years ago, looking at all of the sporty models who were doing what I wanted to do. At the beginning, I didn’t think I’d get there. And looking back, I actually didn’t have a solid reason to discredit myself. When you keep going at it for a long time, you’ll have these moments of “this could actually happen,” followed by moments of “this is actually happening.” Know that there is room for you.
<3 RECEJCTION IS PART OF THE STORY
In order to really succeed at this thing, you’ll have to reach out to a lot of people. And you will have to be your own best fan, because you will get rejected s o m a n y t i m e s. And as you make your way up, you’ll experience bigger levels of rejection. Some will start to matter less, and some you will take personally. Understand from the beginning that it’s never personal, and that you’re signing up for this. I still get rejected often. It just means that I’m trying, and I’m constantly reaching higher. It’s part of the process. Easy as that.
<3 YOUR CHOICE: FUN OR STRESSFUL
This whole thing can be fun, or it can be stressful. Honestly it’ll definitely be a bit of both– that’s what happens with uncertainty.
But what if it could be fun?
What if you could play in the unknown?
What if you loved it?
Let it be fun! The whole entrepreneurial journey is full of unknowns, and that’s a given. It’s on you to decide how you will cope with them.
<3 YOUR DEFINITION OF SUCCESS WILL CHANGE
When you are defining your own career, success is a moving target. It changes as you change. It evolves as you become more skilled and explore new avenues. You might be surprised how your ambitions shift. A goal you had a year ago might feel really easy now. It might feel just as far away. Set benchmarks and check in with yourself. Stay ambitious, but always remember where you started and how much you have learned.
<3 YOU HAVE TO BE IN LOVE WITH THE PROCESS
Why are you actually in this thing? Is it to get some general “likes”? Is it to work from a beach? Is it to get famous? Are you just as in love with the process as you are with the result? If you don’t love the process, it will feel old pretty damn quick. If you don’t yet know if you love the process, you’ll find out as soon as you start, I promise.
<3 IT’S SOOO WORTH IT!
And honestly, there are times when I really wonder about this. There are late nights and early mornings when I’d simply rather sleep. There are weekends I’d rather do a million things than spend the whole day indoors in the studio, shooting for commercial that I’ll probably never even see. There are weeks and months when I wonder if I should go get a more stable job so I didn’t always have to think about my next project. But I know what I want my mark on this world to be– connection, motivation, beautiful images, stories that enrich and empower. So I do this. Every day. And it’s worth it!
Know that this isn’t an overnight success kind of thing. And know that you most definitely are not alone. Going after the things you truly want is hard work, and nobody ever promised it’d be simple or easy. It might feel impossible, but you will never know unless you start!
Whatever your dream job is, and wherever you are in the process, I’m rooting for you.