Mason’s Story: I Know What I Want and That It’s OK to Go After It
The Impact of Coaching
I was unhappy at my job and throwing darts in about twenty five different directions, unsure of where to go or what the next right step was.
I had tried journaling and talking to myself. I was applying for law school, applying for my MBA, applying for data science, looking at boot camps, trying to find an answer somewhere.
For me, the career coaching helped me to find clarity and a place to point the arrow, a target to aim for. So I may not hit the bull’s eye and I may not hit the bull’s eye the first time, but at least I’m shooting in the right direction. Figuring out what I really want at the core has been really empowering.
I went from being unemployed to having a full-time job in Public Relations, which is a great fit for where I am in life right now. My new company is ridiculously amazing, like true commitment to DEI. They’re not perfect, but they’re pretty darn awesome. I decided to start my MBA. As far as public speaking goes, I have two paid speaking gigs in June for pride month and I got chosen to do a TEDx talk in Saint Louis this fall, which is really mind blowingly awesome. I’m excited. It’s such a huge opportunity.
I still have moments where I find myself going, “Wait, what am I doing? How do I get to where I want to be?”, but I’m able to talk myself through it more easily now. I’m able to say no, the end goal is to be a professional public speaker, and I am a professional public speaker. It’s just not my full-time gig yet.
From the coaching, I know what I want and that it’s ok to go after it even if other people may not understand it. I don’t have to be ashamed of what I want and what I dream of.
On Finding a Better Work Environment
I didn’t think there was better either. The role wasn’t a great fit for me even though on paper it looked like it was. I am regularly blown away by my current employer in their commitment to diversity, in their care of their employees, unlimited PTO and you have to take 15 days off minimum. I feel supported and my direct supports have my back and will call me out in a kind way when I need to receive feedback and I feel they will receive my feedback as well. I didn’t think that was possible, but it’s there.
Advice for Dreamers
Public speaking for me is a calling. And I use a spiritual word on purpose because even if I don’t get paid, I’m going to stand on stage and talk because people need to hear my story. If you have something that you’re that passionate about, that you’re that driven and motivated for, do it scared. Let it be a hobby if it has to be a hobby. Do the next step. Whatever you do, take that next baby step. That’s how any change happens, by taking that next tiny step.