It can be difficult to achieve goals, especially when there is no support from family members and only a little, rather bemused understanding from the rest of your group.
Much of the time, you’re “it” and if you want to get somewhere, you have to really want or need to get there! Without abandoning your core values and belief system, you do whatever it takes. That always involves a lot of work and often means people just don’t see much of you while you’re working your buns off to complete homework assignments or to meet other milestone markers. People may go to unnecessary extremes to achieve their goals but that’s their decision and not our concern, unless they’re doing something illegal or incredibly stupid that will bring harm to others as well.
It’s not always easy to pick up a dream where you were forced to drop it, and sometimes, too many years have passed and you can’t. So you investigate several substitutes until something clicks with you. Some people will criticize you for trying to improve yourself and may end up hating you when you finally succeed. Jealousy is an ugly thing when allowed to flourish.
In my homeland, the most cutting criticism (politics aside) of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was: “Who does she think she is, putting on airs? She’s nothing but a grocer’s daughter!” Really, people? But the caste system is alive and well in Jolly Olde England. And they ask me why I never went back there to live! In the US we are more likely to celebrate those who achieve, regardless of their background. And yes, there are those exceptions mentioned above, those of the sour grapes variety, but the attitude is not endemic here.
Will the critics win?
Will you let fear of the probable critics stop you? Honestly, are the critics going to pay your bills? Are they going to offer a replacement house that’s more affordable? Will they be there to negotiate the price of a reliable used car and then buy it for you? Not likely. So you do whatever it takes to survive and to provide for yourself for as long as possible within your own beliefs, abilities, and those talents you’re now adding.
In my case, I’m trained as a copywriter since technical writing has its limitations. The question I get is “What’s a copywriter, anyway?” This is followed by “Oh, wait, I get it…you’ll be working with attorneys copyrighting things.”
Nope! I’ll be a copywriter. There’s a difference, of course, and there’s not even a single definition of what a copywriter does.
Copywriters must be extremely flexible. They may write direct mail pieces, web content pages, blog posts, e-newsletters, email campaigns, and informative articles. Some write fundraising material, case studies, or white papers that explain a product or a philosophy using data and verifiable sources. These are not sales brochures. In any event, no made-up stories are allowed. Some copywriters specialize, perhaps in medicine, heath foods, financial industry, ocean sports, gardening, travel, software, you name it.
Your goals may not include writing and probably shouldn’t if you’re not willing to keep learning. Writers are not born. They are made, even when they begin writing at the age of three because it’s in their genes.
Whatever your goals are, do whatever it takes to reach them, even when life has sidetracked you by its many responsibilities or by the road less-traveled that you wish you hadn’t taken after all. It takes whatever it takes to become a decent human being who can better the world. Keep moving ahead.