Is it time to take that big leap?
We are still early into the new year, have you set any new resolutions?
I’m not big on resolutions, I like to set intentions to focus and anchor myself to. Maybe during the multiple lockdowns you’ve had time to think of embarking on something new or making a fresh start in someway, there’s been a-lot of talk of side hustles and hobbies.
Are you ready to take that next big step?
This month on R.A.W we’re exploring new beginnings.
So what do I know about new beginnings, well 2017 was a huge shift for me I made a bold and big move to quit, with integrity my full time corporate events and marketing job, to pursue my dream as a dancer. Yes you heard me right I left my comfortable good monthly pay check to go into the unknown in bid to follow my passion.
I’ve always loved dancing since I was kid, from family parties to school talent shows, I was know as the dancer. However, as much as I enjoyed it, I never considered this a possible career, hello in most African household dance is part of your everyday lifestyle this is just want we do. With that in mind it was a hobby that turned into a side-hustle, 9-5 full time work or education then 5-9 well more like 5-11pm I trained. As I grew older, these 2 interests started to really conflict, what started as a simple nice dream grew into a real burning desire, all I could ever think about is dance and that there was more. Don’t get me wrong I loved my job but it just wasn’t it and restricted, I was 24 and I thought it not now, when?
Keeping it real, this was one of the hardest decisions I made in my lifetime so far and literally took me over a year to fully commit and make the move.
I battled a lot mentally with the fear and worry of all the what ifs from failure, money to letting others down, hey I was a great worker, very good at my job and my parents were super proud of me being a working independent woman. Anyways I finally sucked it up and did it.
You’re probably thinking why did I have to be so extreme and quit everything, couldn’t I just go part time or wait for a good dance job to come. Trust me, if I had it completely my way I would have a good excuse or safety net to transition but I realised this wasn’t just about pursuing my passion, it was about purpose.
From January 2016 I knew deep down in my soul it was time to move on, still I was so fearful of the unknown.
Waiting for Beyonce to scout me or some other big dance gig, they never came. The nest really started to rustle that year, so many confirmations came as I really grew in confidence and skillset as dancer. I prayed and hoped my work place would make me redundant, I swear there was a redundancy wave in 2016 where 2 of my sisters and few close friends were made redundant, thankfully they were ok and managed to find new work. Honestly, I was so jealous of them as 1 by 1 they were let go, I pleaded to God why can’t I be made redundant so I can go be dancer. After almost a year of wrestling and looking for a way out, I realised that God wasn’t going to do it for me, it was step I had to make, take the leap of faith and hope for the best.
I consulted and cried to close family, friends mentors and Jesus about the decision, my sisters especially were super supportive and helped to talk it through and encouraged me to just go for it. My mum wasn’t a big fan at all lol and couldn’t understand why I was leaving stability - my Dad was out of the country for me to tell him. They eventually came round even though they don’t always understand but they still support.
The fear and anxiety was made me sick to my stomach, but I ain’t no scaredy cat, I had enough signs to go for it, November 2016 I made the decision, my exit and money plan. Wrote my resignation letter, handed it in February and left in March 2017, my manager and colleagues were super supportive which helped with any awkward feelings of guilt.
Am I still following my dreams?
Yes more and more everyday, I didn’t look back I truly believe this is the industry where I’m called and purposed to be in at the moment. Its definitely not stable or easy and gosh in the midst of pandemic has been shaken big time where I was tempted to stop but I’m still here, I’m still winning and even had 2 amazing opportunities to be part of incredible productions and make some good career moves in a middle of the 2020 pandemic - that’s not normal and I’m grateful, despite the uncertainty this is where I’m meant to be and thrive.
Of course I miss the money, lifestyle, the stability and have had loads of moments of wanting to give up but honestly there’s nothing like what I get to do and putting my artistry, passion and purpose first is literally one of the best decisions I’ve made.
New beginnings are exciting, adventurous and refreshing but can also be uncomfortable, difficult and scary.
Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make the move or you won’t succeed, there’s only one way to find out you just got to take that leap of faith.
This month, we focusing on new beginnings where we’ll have more guest interviews sharing their experiences and top tips when making a fresh start in whatever form it may be. Every situation is different.