Warning: I’m about to share a 7-minute video with you. Yes, it’s long. But yes, I also think it’s worth it.
Spanish speakers, watch this:
English speakers, watch this:
I came across this video a few weeks ago via a tweet from a friend who I met while studying in Pamplona. I’m normally not a huge fan of self-help, motivational books, videos or speeches. Chicken Soup for the Soul? Hate it. Inspirational quotes at the end of email signatures? No thank you. It’s even a little hard for me to get into TED Talks.
But I saved the link to this video.
Maybe this video found me in a moment of winter break sappiness. My hard emotional exterior was possibly broken down by watching excessive episodes of Downton Abbey.
In any event, this video forced me to recognize that I’m not totally confined to the things that are comfortable and easy to me. I, like many others my age, struggle with leaving our bubbles of security and entering the unknown. We intellectually understand to succeed innovators must do something that hasn’t been done before. But we also recognize lots of innovators fail the first, second and even third time around.
It’s hard for me to balance practicality with goals. When college nears its end, living financially independent is imminent, student loan bills start to roll in and nailing down a job to make those things possible is at the top of our to do list. (Full disclosure, I’m hopefully studying for my masters at Mizzou for the year following my undergrad. Even though these realities are a little further away for me, I still think about them.)
I’ve spent four (hopefully soon-to-be five) years studying journalism. And I’m starting to form a concrete vision of my ideal career path. However, as my practical mothers frequently reminds me, there are a lot more jobs in PR than in news organization strategy, community engagement and media business models combined.
But as I like to remind my mother, there are lots of jobs that I’m preparing for that don’t yet exist. (i.e. There are many people with the title social media specialist today who couldn’t have predicted that five years ago.)
As the video suggest, the greatest experiences happen in the “panic zone” as it is so lovingly names. And when I have an idea good enough or a conviction strong enough, I’ll shrug off my yoke of practicality and jump right in.
But for now, I’m content with continuing to learn as much as I can while I still have the patience, ability and time. Maybe it’s here that I’ll uncover my idea that will convince me to take the next big step.
Here are some things on my tentative five-year to-do list.
1. Start and finish my masters.
2. Take a class (or a couple) to learn the basics of French at a community college after I finish my masters.
3. Learn HTML5, CSS and a few other coding languages.
4. Read 50 books. That’s 10 books a year for the next five years.
5. Get a job (or two) working to advance the future of news. Check back later for more details on this.
There’s nothing radical on this list. No starting my own business, moving to another country or running for political office.
So yes, I dare to dream, but in a practical, methodical planned out sort of way. And for now, that’s perfectly OK with me.