Jobs are a lot like relationships, when you find the one that you think is perfect for you, you hang onto it forever right? Anything that doesn't challenge you and allow you to grow, anything that doesn't really turn you on and allow you to be yourself you leave. However, when you find something good and it's your first or if you find it whilst you are still so young, you find yourself questioning, is there something better out there?
So, do you take that risk? Do you leave everything you've got in order to pursue something you don't know exists, or something you don't know you will ever have?
And do we, as dancers really know how much we are worth?
So when you decide to deliberately leave your job, you leave with the expectation of finding more, whether it be more money or more challenges or more fulfillment. Should we settle for good if we are searching for great? (and great is different for everybody it could be great money, great movement, great people) but inevitably in our eyes it's something better.
However, one of the sad things is, we have a tendency to define what we have by what it is that's missing, and sometimes we forget how good what we have actually is. But then if what we have is not what we want is it ever going to be good enough? And if we are lucky enough to get what we want... where do we go from there? And is it going to be enough for us in the long run?
I had an audition recently. Lots of fun! I was getting to dance again and try some new things that I had never done before. It was small, only 13 of us were invited and everyone was female which was also something that I had never experienced before. I had read everything clearly on the response to the audition application and all in all it seemed like a good job.
Not only that, honestly, I wasn't expecting to get it. So as time passes and the days go on I am shocked that I received an email asking me if I would like to accept an offer. I called my mum, she was over the moon and screeched down the phone and then they said they would send me the contract to have a look over.
In reading the contract I had more of an understanding of what the job would entail and what would be expected of me and turns out, I managed to apply for something that was close to exactly what I had just left... is it a trait? Is it like a relationship? Am I just looking for the same thing but with more to offer? Not only that, I was being asked a lot for a little in return.
The job is amazing and great if that is what you are looking for, unfortunately it didn't 'turn me on' in a sense that I left my previous job for a reason and the job was very similar to what I had left. Unless I find something to satisfy my needs I don't want to take on the commitment, after all it is not fair on me or my employer. In the end I decided not to take the job. It was a difficult decision, I am unemployed and I have nothing to lose yet in my heart and my head I know what it is that I want and when I find it or it finds me I will embrace it with open arms.
So all in all, I feel a bit like an idiot. I am in an industry where there is a HUGE mix of people. Everything from those dying to get a job, (wanting to be on the stage and perform under the lights and the raucous applause of the audience ) to those who have put in 10 years of hard work, working their way to their dream unwilling to take anything less than anything that makes them happy. I graduated 3 years ago.
When it comes to dance I'm still a baby fish in the ocean and still have so much more to learn, but I have also been in a relationship with myself for 26 years and I want to be happy in life and in work. Why should I settle when I have a dream that resonates so strongly in my heart? I specialised in a field, just as an architect or a doctor would and it is far from easy to get work. Dancers are being mass produced by the hundreds, every year, and I'm competing with people younger but just as hungry as me as well as those who have experience and confidence.
How long can I fight for? And is what I want within reach of the standard I am and the experience I hold?
'A job is a job' my mother says, 'it's tough out there and it's vulgar'. But my job isn't just what I do, it's who I am. It's my way of releasing tension, it's my way of expressing how I feel it's my vocabulary and I cant give anything less than everything I have so when it comes to my job, just like a relationship... if it doesn't work, and it doesn't make my stomach flip. What's the point?
I rather be unhappy and unemployed than unhappy and trapped or am I just a fool?
Jobs (just like relationships). Turns out the ones that will help you learn and grow, challenge you and push you to be better and when you think about make you smile (y' know those ones?) The really good ones... they're really hard to come by...
Or is that only if you're stubborn, following your heart and chasing your dream?
There's a big ocean of opportunity, lots of goldfish, a few whales and then the Megaouth Shark (one of the rarest animals in existence) do we bank on what we catch? or do we dive into the darkness and search for that hidden gem that will truly make us happy?