After spending so much time promoting my skills at events and parties in efforts to connect with influential people in “the industry,” I became exhausted and discouraged by the false idea that I wasn’t good enough based on the fact that these strangers didn’t want to work with me. I expected them to fill this void of confidence I had. I was ignoring my support system of loved ones—my people, my friends, my family, and my ancestors.
I decided to work on projects for me—not projects that I would plan to share on Instagram, submit to a magazine, or use to improve my portfolio. My journey is being defined by my ability to connect the dots, on and off a map, to navigate how I coalesce with like-minded people with a shared mission to hold it down for our people. I have had to part ways with what my idea of “comfort and happiness” has been for the majority of my life. At a point, I felt entitled to this sense of “comfort and happiness” after years of studying, getting internships, and bending over backwards on marketing campaigns. I was becoming so frustrated that this wasn’t my reality. I noticed that as I inched more towards “comfort,” I was becoming unhappy. When I became “happy,” I began to sacrifice my comfort. I am learning more about balance. Now that I am at a stage in life when I am starting to be compensated for my art, I need to learn what luxuries truly are in life instead of what is promoted as luxury.