Giving Up Is Lame
There are a gazillion self-help books on the market right now that talk about fulfilling your dreams, enhancing and maintaining your motivation, and generally taking what’s lurking on the inside of your body, polishing it to a high gloss and then spinning that to your advantage. Throw in a healthy serving of “Do what you love, and money will follow” and other well-used clichés, and the world would have you believe that, like Chaka Khan/Whitney Houston (pre-Bobby) said in that oldie but goodie “I’m Every Woman (or man, as the case may be), It’s all in me.”
That’s true. According to the laws of the universe (bear with me people, my dad’s an ordained minister) everything you need to be happy and successful in life is literally chilling inside your mind and your spirit. You must, however, learn how to tap into this inner strength and align your various chakras and every damn thing else along with the natural ebb and flow of energy in the universe. The same is true of your career.
I’m a writer. Sure, I work as an editor during the day, and I very much like and enjoy my job. I have great coworkers and my company produces quality print and online work that helps people in my appointed niches, so my portfolio is stocked with good stuff to showcase how I spend my days. But like most writers, I have dreams of one day ascending to the top of the New York Times bestseller list and languishing triumphantly for weeks, or having someone realize that romance novels are the untapped art form of the century and give me, with my multi-cultural, admittedly edgy bent, a National Book Award for fiction. But for now, I’m 48 or 105 pages into several stories, with a few freelance gigs in the fire, and Simon & Schuster has yet to come or call begging. Will they? Yes! But only if I don’t give up.
If you pitched your beginning, intermediate or advanced IT skills into the ring for a new project and were denied, that’s cool. If you submitted your resume for what you thought would be the perfect, next big gig/professional coup and haven’t heard anything, cool. It could be that boss or hiring director is a miserable human being and short-sighted to boot, but don’t give up. Even more importantly, don’t stop working. Certainly don’t listen to any nay-sayers, of whom there are legions, trying to tell you what you should do or what you need to do. Tell those people, if only in the privacy of your own head, to shut the hell up.
Keep working, keep pitching, definitely keep learning in labs and on the job, adding new certifications and volunteer projects to your resume. Get creative! Get the right people’s attention. Continue to explore your IT and business environment. Keep your eyes and ears open for new opportunities to step up and make a significant, bottom-line-impacting contribution. As long as you don’t give up, you’ll find one.