I’ve been having a bit of a career crisis lately. In case you weren’t aware, trying to make it as an opera singer is really difficult. Shocker, right?
It’s more than that though. Singing, as both an action and as an industry, is extremely psychological, and when it doesn’t go well, it can have a very negative effect on your psychological well-being. (The good news is, this is normal. This article about rejection is actually pretty comforting.) Lately, the big question for me has been whether or not I want to continue dealing with rejection as part of my work for the rest of my life. And really, what sane person would want that?
At this point in my life, I have many other things that are important to me. I have an incredible, wonderful, loving, godly husband who deserves 100% of my heart, and kids are within our five-year plan. We want to be homeowners and have significant time to devote to our families and friends. We love being youth leaders and guiding students on their faith journeys. And over the past few months, I have started to wonder if my attempt at a performance career is truly compatible with all of those things.
A few months ago, Julie at Alone With My Tea (who is, incidentally, a wonderful real-life friend) posted her criteria for her ideal job, which inspired me to write down mine:
-Has a flexible schedule, or at least allows for some time off
-Lets me spend a lot of time interacting with people
-Has a major creative element
-Is compatible with my love for music/singing/performing
-Helps people in some way
-Is something I’m passionate, or at the very least excited, about
-Isn’t repetitive or boring
-Includes projects or goals to work towards
-Is something I am excited to do every day, and a bad day is the exception rather than the rule
-Seems meaningful and relevant in society today
-Doesn’t ask me to compromise my beliefs, morals, or values
-Is compatible with having a family and good relationships with them
-Provides significant enough income for me to make an actual contribution to our family finances
What do you think? Are these reasonable expectations? Based on these criteria, do you have any ideas on what I should do with my life?