By Jordan Hale – Sundown United // Los Angeles
I find it so ironic that the things we love most are often the things we are most afraid to really do. And when I say “really do” – I mean dropping all the other safer options and finding ways to make a living doing something you’re passionate about.
This is something we’re all encouraged to do as children, and even as children it makes sense to us: to do what you love. But as we get older and money and responsibility come into play, this prospect becomes a bit harder to swallow.
All of the sudden, so much is at stake, and our defenses go up: making oneself devoid of expectation, not allowing oneself to try. This brings about a warm blanket of apathetic safety, eradicating the possibility for disappointment. But this fear (and we must call it fear) will do nothing but hold us back from the things we truly desire. Allowing fear to infiltrate our lives is the abdication of our control and our free will.
I think the summertime is a good time to think about this concept. Most of us equate the summer with freedom – which for humans really means having the time to enjoy ourselves and do what we want, to do what we love and follow those instincts wherever they may take us. Summer is the time for fun and joy and most importantly, self-discovery.
But once our childhood years are behind us, summer is snatched away suddenly (much like recess once was – remember that?!) and we are left to our own devices to work that time of pursuing passion and discovery into our busy work-filled lives.
For me, music has always been my greatest passion – without question. I love to sing, but have always been afraid to do it. I still am. And a life of show business never seemed attractive to me. Famous people seem so exposed and abnormal, even unhappy. So my new goal became finding a way to work music into my career without having to make a life I wasn’t sure I wanted.
I studied film in college and loved it, and when I realized I could integrate my love of music into my degree there was no turning back. And I LOVE my job. I am a person who loves to be creative, but who also need structure and control, and often times, guidance. If left to my own devices to carve our a career in singing or songwriting, I know I would not be as prolific as I am in a structured industry that’s constantly moving – I get swept up in the current and develop through it.
I’ve realized that life isn’t necessarily about following one dream to an extreme degree as much as it is finding ways to follow each and every one of your dreams to some degree. This can happen in abstract ways, and of course it won’t always be the way you planned it. If you’re anything like me, you are interested in many things (I love writing, reading, travel, food, art, people) – and finding new ways to pursue these interests is forever fulfilling.
So I think we should all start small: first recognizing what our dreams are and how they change, then discovering ways to follow each one to a certain point before deciding how far you will go with each of these dreams. And your journeys through each dream will stop and start and grow on different paths, like the roots on a gigantic tree. Sitting with this beautiful image now, and thinking of the ones I love, I realize how much we all want to do and accomplish still, and it is endlessly exciting.