“When you have a dream, you’ve got to grab it and never let go.” – Carol Burnett, American comedian, and actress.
We’re always being told to aim high; to follow our dreams, and reach for the stars, and should we fail, we’ll at least find ourselves somewhere in the stratosphere. That’s good advice. But as with everything in life, there are two sides to every situation. Head and tails. Ying and Yang. Pros and Cons. Boon and Bane. Right and Wrong. And more often than not, life happens.
Unlike men, women usually experience a gap in their careers for many reasons. They put their dreams on the backburner as they silently raise their newborns. They hold back from a big promotion that could take them across the world, so as not to stay separated from their families. They move across oceans and countries to join their spouse. And as we salute their selflessness, we are also forced to ask the question – Can a woman never achieve her dreams? We’ll get to that in just a minute. But before we do, here’s a real-life example to ponder.
Leah Busque was a software engineer with a leading IT firm, IBM. She had what many would call a successful life. But she constantly felt something amiss. Seven years after she began her career, in 2008, she spotted inspiration and she seized it. Today, she is the founder and CEO of TaskRabbit – a million-dollar company that helps people outsource tasks for a given compensation. Leah is not the only success story out there. The same can be said of many others such as Oprah Winfrey, a leading television show host who was fired from her position as a TV anchor. J.K. Rowling, a renowned author who was rejected multiple times before she went on to sell roughly 400 million copies. We could on and on, recounting heroic tales that are a dime a dozen. Inspiration is all around. It only takes a moment’s notice to make a change. But are you up for it?
Now, we don’t believe in speaking of castles in the sky. What we do believe in is a clear plan of action. It pays to make a calculated risk. To weigh your pros and cons before taking that leap of faith. For example, it makes sense for a new mother to find an alternate plan that’ll let her work from home as she nurtures her health and her that of her baby’s. A young graduate who aspires to start her venture will need to research, gain insights, and preferably consider a job-on-the-side that’ll provide her a stable financial standing before moving ahead. The newly-wed bride who has moved continents could start by looking around her neighborhood to explore new ways to monetize her time, while she tries to get back on track. The point is to have a well-crafted plan that’ll make success a lot easier to achieve.
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Meanwhile, we encourage all the lovely women out there to get out of the rut. Find your passion and share your gifts. The world is waiting!