In the last couple of years I’ve noticed a big shift in the way people decide to build a career.
There are more people than ever who have struck out on their own and created their dream job, rather than waiting for someone to give it to them.
And the internet is full of people keen to advise others to follow that same path to their dreams. It’s inspiring advice, but sadly it’s not always practical.
I’m fortunate that my dream has always been to be a writer. Age isn’t a barrier to publishing a novel, and I can write easily in my free time. The internet allows me to connect with other writers and book lovers, practising my writing skills with every blog post that I publish.
But not everyone’s dreams are so accessible.
Whether you want to be an athlete, an astronaut or an accountant, there are plenty of barriers to overcome, from age to ability to qualifications to sheer perseverance. Not everyone wants it badly enough.
So what happens when you realise that your dream will never become a reality?
Most of the people I know aren’t working in the jobs they dreamed about as children. As they got older, they made practical choices for their futures, as society told them they should. They found jobs that touched on the ones they really wanted, or they fell into careers without much of a plan at all.
That doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Plenty of people are happy that way.
But if you want, if you have a dream that you can almost touch, then what are you waiting for?
You know what you want and that’s further than some people ever get. You know what lights you up and you have the skills to pursue it.
If you can do what you love, then you’re one of the lucky ones.
Don’t give up without giving yourself a chance.