Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Keep going indies, big dreamers, and risk takers.

For Dreamers

It really sickens me the number of drafts I see in my post list, and how many of them are basically empty. Tons of articles, started, not finished.

Getting back into the swing of things is rough, school, work, relationships, there's always something. And really that's just life, learning to deal enough to move past the low times is essential and part of everyone's development; keeping true to yourself and keeping good people around you in the process is part of true happiness. And of course all of this is very difficult, though entirely worth it.

To bring this back around to topic. It's really hard to keep going with all of those dreams. This is why we aspire and hold those successful and happy people we see in life in such high regard. The only problem there is we see these more successful people and instead of seeing inspiration so often we get the "Man I could never be that good." gut response and don't try. Unless of course, we actually have no idea the level of work and dedication that's gone into their success, which is where we respond with "Bah, what a idiot, I could do that and be famous." Which is two parts incorrect, one part obvious.

Bit of Reality
And here is my point, the I could do that is where you succeed. That's all there is too it. Add on the assumptions on how much work is actually behind the success and the assumption that you'll wind up famous and you're horribly mislead. You can't know how much work goes into, making a game, writing a novel, creating an internet show, whatever, until you actually do that thing. And you'll never know how much goes into doing that successfully until you do it to completion, and then continue doing it, while enjoying yourself. If you hate what you are currently doing, then you're doing it wrong. Not to say you're doing the wrong thing, but you're doing it wrong. Living the dream is not about the endgame, it's good to have goals and strive towards them, but if the goal is too high for you to feel good about yourself while striving for it, then you're not living the dream. Every goal, every project, ever path, has set backs. Some harder then others, but you will eventually hit all of them. The key to success, is not staying down when you've tripped over the first, dozenth, or millionth set back.

The key to successfully being successful (actually having the enjoyable lifestyle you dreamed of) is not living for the lifestyle, but for your passion. If you see yourself taking entire days just to write the next best selling novel or spending hours behind the computer to be hailed as the next genius video game designer; then you're going to be miserable and you probably won't be very good at what you do. That's because it's only the people who care about what they're doing, instead of comparing themselves and their work to others, are the only ones with the mindset to focus on carry on through the hardships and the setbacks; because they see they're doing what they love, that's what makes them happy, and that's what they go to when times are rough. Of course these people make it look easy, they have the right mindset. Instead of living for their goals, where only in achieving those goals does someone feel fulfilled; they live for their art, where in simply partaking in their art that someone finds joy. Now this might sound like hippy talk, we've had so many people in our lives insist you can't live off dreams, that you need to work for this "backup plan" before going out and doing what you want. All of that I find defeatist and nonsensical for 4 simple reasons.

1. If your goal in life is to have a solid "backup plan" to your dreams, then you will be miserable. 
Because not living with something you truly feel is your propose, is miserable. This is why boring adults have children and then feel better about themselves, because they want and need propose. (not implying that parenting is an empty replacement for any higher cause)

2. Living the dream does not mean being ignorant of reality. It does not equate to quitting your job, leaving your family, and living as some hobo painting the faces of celebrities onto sneakers on the street. It means gearing your life and actions towards self fulfillment while maintaining your responsibilities. Paying the bills, being a parent. Continuing to be in the life of those that care about you. Every action is an investment; measure the cost and return of time and money put in and how much joy and profit you receive out of it. No it's not all about the money, but if what your doing is burning a hole in your wallet/purse to the degree you can't life comfortably and need it as an escape from your situation, then you need to be mindful of your spending with your financial situation. (this is where the comparison of games and drugs come in) If you have student lones you have no business flying out to Florida on vacation with friends or buying two of the next gen consoles, unless you get a serious discount and budget the rest of your year to make up for it. It's about finding a balance between a lifestyle you and your family can feel content with, while doing something that makes you feel better about yourself.

3. There is too much offered in life to assign yourself to "plans" for the future. So much will happen, some opportunities will never present themselves meanwhile others will bombard you daily. Being attentive and listening will show you how much the world has to offer on a daily basis, being honest to yourself will let you see what you should/can do to better yourself, and acknowledging you might be wrong and you probably have more options then you think will let you take steps outside that comfort zone and live a life and be happy when you didn't think you could. Don't limit yourself, simply be honest with yourself. It is only when we are dishonest with ourselves that we end making decisions we will one day look back and regret.

4. Yes it is true that we are only assigned one lifetime, and careers are years in the making. But that doesn't mean after you picked a career in high school or got promoted at your day job that you're stuck in one destiny. There is no such thing as a point of no return. That doesn't qualify wasting years of your life doing nothing with the 'plan' to turn it all around down the road. It simply proves no one is truly lost, they're just ignorant of their standing. It can take only a second to find your feet and then the light. You don't need to force yourself to be content with a life you don't want to live.

So all of you who think you're no good, or that you've fallen too low, know that you're wrong. Know that the only thing that's stopping you from finding your footing is the fog of your own self doubt. That true honesty and having a passion can be light enough to clear an easy path. And that the path is never easy, but when you know you love it you don't notice the effort. And know that the fact you can start off and do this without effort is proof that you are strong and have the potential, and therefor all the requirements to live a dream. So never give up. Even when it's hard and you don't want to continue for the strain, reach out; there are others with your dream that have been in you low and will gladly lend a hand, because they know only thing worse then finding yourself in those low places, is seeing someone just lay there.

Good luck to all of you.