Sometimes the weight of uncertainty is crippling.
If I stop and think about it too long then I begin to panic. When I panic I freeze. When I freeze I shut down.
I think how I’ve made a mess of it all. I think what my next step will be and the road I’m on to achieve it. Then I think if it’s what I really want.
I like working in social media marketing, no doubt. I love the strategy and I love creating great content. There are far worse things I could do with my life than use those skills to convince customers to buy this or that.
If such an existence seems a bit pointless, I guess it’s no different to what most young professionals think about their jobs and their lives. Given what’s going on, can we really ask for more?
I think back and part of me wishes I’d trained in something real, like law or trading. Sure, I probably wouldn’t love my job, but it would be solid and real in a way that working in social media isn’t.
Then I think about how much I love to write and wonder if I should become a journalist. Or try to. I mean, who isn’t a bloody journalist these days?
But although I love writing, it’s the strategic angle of social media which really sets the fire in me going. That’s the part which excites and flows through my brain. The creative challenge of taking something and exploring all the colours in the digital paint palette with it.
Thankfully, despite my entirely private panic attacks, I’ve landed two freelance gigs to keep me going. As my brain turns to mush and I want to pull the covers over my head and retreat into myself, I can’t. Even though my former boss shat all over my confidence in my abilities as a writer and strategist, I have to keep going. Falling apart isn’t an option when there’s work to be done; however I’m feeling inside I need to maintain the veneer of professionalism and accountability. My work still needs to be top notch, even when I’ve stopped believing that it can be.
But out of the ashes of my doubt and disbelief rose an idea. This morning as I walked for the bus, it dropped into my head, and since then I can’t shake it. Within the world of gaming development, there are roles around plot and story development. Now I don’t know the details and I don’t know what the requirements are, but as I thought about it in my mind, it seemed to tick every box. Obviously, it must be much more than sitting penning stories, there would be restrictions and guidelines; working closely with design teams and lots of other challenges. But…I don’t know. It feels like an idea that’s right in a sea of wrong.
My imagination has, and always will be, my greatest asset. That much I know to be true. If I want to enjoy what I do, then it needs to be in constant flux. And rather than using it to work out how to creatively market holidays or baked beans, what better way to engage it than the challenge of plotting new video games?
Is that real, or even possible? I’m not sure. But I do know that either way I want to find out.
Perhaps it’s just a fevered dream borne out of a moment of pain. If so, so be it. Then I will pursue what I have been trained to do: social media marketing.
But if not, who knows?