I remember the first time we got the swing set installed in our backyard. I was about 10-years-old and watched with bated breath as my dad and uncle tightened the last screw on the swing’s seat and told me, my sister and my cousins that we could take it for a spin. We took turns, two-by-two, letting my dad and uncle give us a gentle push, until we got the momentum to fly in the sky…or at least that’s how it felt. Swinging back and forth in the air, going higher and higher with each thrust was so liberating, so freeing, so exhilarating and magical.
As life went on and time passed, I often yearned for that feeling again. I looked for something symbolic of my swing set to give me that old familiar feeling; going higher and higher as I pushed myself, getting happier and more fulfilled, feeling the wind in my face and through my hair.
When I turned 16-years-old, I landed my first real job as a newspaper reporter where I stayed for about three years and over the course of my career worked as a writer, broadcaster and TV anchor at several media houses locally. I mean, this was the life right? This is what I studied for in college. This is how it was supposed to happen. I would sign in, take assignments, chase politicians, criminals and even celebrities. But, I wasn’t swinging anymore. I couldn’t feel the breeze anymore. My hair stopped blowing in the wind. I’d fallen off the swing.
The career that I had fallen in love with was now becoming more of a burden than a blessing.
The career that I had fallen in love with was now becoming more of a burden than a blessing. I was getting sucked into the old school, traditional media platforms that weren’t allowing me the freedom I so desired. The times were changing and so was I, but the place I worked at was stagnant and by extension stagnated my growth.
So one day, without turning in a resignation letter, with no going away party, no cake, no teary good byes from my co-workers. I walked out of my office with a small box in tow and never looked back.
I didn’t know what the world had in store for me but I was eager to find out. I’d come to the point with that particular job where I was done, I had reached the ceiling and there was nowhere to go but out the door. I wanted to swing again, to feel free, to see the manifestations of my work, to have them take me higher, to make me move faster, to exhilarate me.
I had no job lined up, no interviews to attend the next day and no idea what I would do next. I was taking a huge risk, a bold move that could have any number of consequences. But there are two things I did know for sure: 1) I needed to make that move and 2) I would be okay in the end.
The second I walked out of that door, I was back on my swing again, but this time only drifting. I needed a push, a nudge, something to get the wind in my sails. That’s when I decided to use my talents and the love I still had for media, to work for myself, to freelance, to create new, fresh, entertaining content, to travel and write articles relevant to the people reading it. I wanted my writing to grow tentacles and reach other parts of the world, not get stale in a press room and drowned in newspaper ink.
That’s why today, I work as a freelance journalist and media specialist, TV show host and producer, commercial script writer and voice over, travel writer and lifestyle and entertainment blogger…and I’m my own boss.
I landed my first freelance gig just two months after being on my own.
I landed my first freelance gig just two months after being on my own. A local TV show was looking for a new host. I auditioned and landed the job! Two months later, I was on a plane to Barcelona, Spain to cover a story for this TV show…talk about perks on the job! Doing this gig just once a week I had so much free time on my hands and was looking to fill these slots. So I reached out to a few contacts I’d made during my time as a reporter and informed people that I was now freelancing and available for any writing, voice over or hosting jobs. Before I knew it, I’d developed a list of clients, and it was me who set the hours, days and schedules. It was me who was the boss. In addition to all of this, I had the time to produce three popular TV shows, two of which are on cable TV and the other jut recently premiered. This is exactly what I’ve always dreamed of.
Quitting my job has been the best decision I’ve ever made! I’ve travelled more, made more money, made more connections, met more people…but more importantly I’ve spent more time with my family, with myself and…I learned to swing again!