Get off the Path

Last night I stumbled (or should I say careened?) onto the Q + A Tuesday videos of James Victore. James is a super-energetic graphic designer who has started doing weekly videos responding to peoples questions on life and careers. What he has to say is inspirational for people who want to live creatively and pursue their own projects.

I came across James via 99U which is a regular on my blog reader. He is featured on one of their Top 20 Insights, Talks and Quotables On Making Ideas Happen for 2012.  He has written a piece for 99U on confidence vs shyness which was very pertinent for me. Its hard to appreciate that this passionate, high-energy guy has to deal with his “shyness default setting” when putting himself across. He describes confidence as “being there”, paying attention to what is at hand, rather than the fears and doubts in your head.

In one of his videos on Being Lost he responds to a question about lack of career direction. These words really stood out to me:

Beware of the straight path.

Beware of any path.

If you find yourself on a path, get off it.

This was timely advice for me as I have been struggling with my very strong tendency to take the safe and traditional path. Although I have veered off into a very different lifestyle, which I love, its not yet financially viable, so a part of me keeps thinking I had better start hunting around for the main path and get some steady income. But I don’t feel finished with learning what this unknown path has to teach me. The conventional path has never led me to where I wanted to be. As James says, other people have been in this place of uncertainty, and we can take encouragement from that.

I will be checking out more Q + A Tuesday videos as James’ energy and enthusiasm is contagious. I am pleased that I have freed up time for learning what I need to learn, the way I need to learn it.  This feels more like the school that I need to be attending just now.

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