There’s no study to show the exact percentage of the population who are actively pursuing their dreams. Based on the few people I encounter on a daily basis and the few thousand people who follow me, I’d say the percentage is quite low. Some of these people are still working to find their passion but the majority have one big road block in common: they are waiting for their “big break”.
You know, the “big break” of when someone else will give you permission to live your dreams. The casting director who finally chooses you to star in their film, the HR representative who finally gives you a chance to work at a top law firm, the publishing house who finally says “yes” to publishing your book, or the angel investor who finally agrees to invest in your startup.
That “big break”.
The problem with basing the success of your dreams on this, is you have no control over it. The final answer of whether you will be successful or not lies in the hands of some stranger. Now ask yourself this, do you want some stranger in control of your life and your future happiness?
I hope the answer is “heck no I don’t!”
Good, because you don’t have to give up that control. You don’t have to wait until someone gives you the green light to move to the next step up the ladder towards accomplishing your dreams. And I hope you don’t wait any longer.
It’s time to take back control.
Instead of waiting for something to happen, you need to make something happen for yourself!
As a motivational speaker, I get the question of “how did I get started” way too many times to even count. People can’t fathom how a 25 year old female, who has no huge company or accomplishment behind her, gets hired to speak.
The answer is I made it happen for myself. When I discovered my passion for speaking and knew this was what I wanted to do for a living, I started reaching out to small event organizers in NYC (that’s where I lived at the time). I went on Meetup.com and looked up events focused on wellness, self-love, confidence, and leadership. The main topics I knew I could speak on. I offered to speak for free and email after email I received the same response:
“Thank you for reaching out about speaking at our upcoming event. Unfortunately we have to decline at this moment. Please reach out again in the future. Thank you.”
I was getting so overwhelmed with all the big fat NO’s I was receiving that I was just about to give up. I was reaching out to organizers about events that showed 5 people were attending. FIVE! And they still wouldn’t put me on their stage.
Who was Alexa Carlin? No one knew me and no one thought I was a big deal so no one gave me that “big (well in this case small) break” into the speaking industry I was looking for.
Instead of giving up, because I never believe that’s an option, I made something happen for myself.
“I’ll just create my own event!” I thought. So, I created my first speaker series event.
I asked 3 female entrepreneurs I knew that could share their story around the topic of my event. I featured them as speakers with a request for them to promote the event on their social media accounts. (This helped bring in some guests.)
The event featured me as the host (and as a speaker) and three other awesome speakers. Ten people showed up and paid $10 each to attend. YES! I was ecstatic.
I hosted another event a few months after with three new speakers on a different topic. 35 people bought tickets and showed up. Next event, 45 people and the event after that 60 people!
As my events grew, so did my reputation in the speaking field. One woman who attended my third event was so impressed, she asked me to speak at her 3-day retreat in Boca Raton, FL. This is where I received my first standing ovation and sold out of my book! From there, word got out and I was becoming a local influential public speaker.
I spoke for free for about a year until I was discovered by my current agency, For College For Life. Now i’m getting paid to speak at colleges across the country!
You see, if I had put the control in other people’s hands I would still be where I was a few years ago. Waiting for someone to give me that “big break”.
Your dream doesn’t deserve to be sitting on the bench waiting for the coach to pick you. If you want to score, you must choose yourself.
So whether you want to be an actor, singer, app developer, Snapchat influencer, celebrity lawyer, artist, author, small business owner, vet, dentist, engineer, or speaker, you must make it happen for yourself.
The control is in your hands. Now what you decide to do with it, will determine everything.
Questions? Comment below.