Life’s Reality Check : Learn Now to Earn Later

I’ve struggled with this for some time. While not everyone likes a  9 to 5 and most artists want to do their dream job. It’s a bit discouraging to not be able find your dream career. Life is serving a reality check. Its more competition and more hustle to land a job than before.

The Dream Job, is probably not gonna be the first job you land. Adam Star once said; “Its called a dream job for a reason. In that while it does exist you may have difficulty finding it or even landing it.”

However just because you wont be that great director anytime soon doesn’t mean you should give up.

Learning or Earning?

A wise man once said, that usually there are 2 periods of ones job life; The first part where one is learning and the other is where he is earning. I mean this in that  you start a career , while you may not be getting good pay, (if you’re getting paid at all) you benefit more from what you learn on the job. Which is why internships and volunteering are so important. The 6 months I spent volunteering and doing a lot of gigs for free were very important because I learned so much in that short time.

Now when I think about applying to jobs I think less of the pay and more about what skill I would be learning.

Mark Suster advises: “Make sure that what you get out of working at this company is one or several of the following:

1. A great network of talented excutives and VCs,

2. More responsibility than your last job,

3. Specific industry or technical skills that will help you in what you do next,

4. A chance to partner with companies that will increase your industry relationships, etc.”

Learn now to earn later.

“This nigga graduated at the top of our class I went to cheesecake he was a muthafuckin waiter there”- Kanye West.

Theres nothing wrong with a 9 to 5 its always been hard for me to do something where the only thing I benefit from it is the pay check. I think most young artists these days share my fear of being trapped in a job they hate paying the bills.

My friends and I had a long discussion about this the other day. Usually our parents want us to get a 9 to 5 than to pursue our dreams. Only because a 9 to 5 is smart. Its something to fall back on, its stable, reliable and of course safe.  At first I refused to take any job outside of the media field out of pride. But then I realized something.

Most artists place what they do as a part of their identity. A painter sees himself as a painter, a director sees himself only as a director.  I saw myself as an artist and only that. However in this day and age a person cant afford to place any form of limitations on themselves.

An author once said, they’re two kind of writers. The one who when asked what he does tells people. “Im a writer” and then theres the one that wakes up in the morning and gets to writing.

The difference between the two is the latter hates writing. He knows its an exercise and a practice. He no longer does it for fun. When one is perfecting their skill its never fun, its usually very frustrating. He sees it as a chore. This is why even now I believe I haven’t earned the title of photographer or graphic artist as yet. There is still so much to learn.

To define yourself by what you do is to limit what you are capable of. Gordon Ramsey was a soccer player before he hurt his knee and discovered cooking “Completely by accident”.

A 9 to 5 is safe, which is why its smarter to have a 9 to 5 as well as doing ur art form in your spare time. Most of their friends did a 9 to 5 they hated, used the money to buy their equipment and then quit when they finally got the job they wanted. Kid Cudi worked at a clothing store before he got signed.

Most artists don’t want to hear this. I know at times I don’t want to. But sometimes a sign of maturity is doing what you don’t want to do when you don’t feel like doing it.

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