in·spi·ra·tion \ˌin(t)-spə-ˈrā-shən, -(ˌ)spi-\
: something that makes someone want to do something or that gives someone an idea about what to do or create : a force or influence that inspires someone
: a person, place, experience, etc., that makes someone want to do or create something
This morning, I had an epiphany. While listening to The Friend Zone’s latest podcast as I got ready for work, I realized I’ve become the exact thing I feared the most. Content.
Let’s go back.
My sophomore year in college, I started taking my writing seriously. The moment I realized that I could make a career out of my newfound passion, I was ecstatic. I studied my craft. I listened to the female legends, Angie Martinez and Miss Info, nightly. Soon, I began doing write-ups on the rappers I enjoyed from the DMV area. Write-ups turned into interviews and shoutouts. The light at the end of the tunnel fed my inspiration. I was able to visualize myself working with more artists, mastering my craft, and people close to the people I looked up to.
The summer of my senior year, things had really kicked off. If there was a festival or concert, I was there taking pictures and writing a review. That summer, I had my first big interview with Raekwon the Chef. As terrified as I was at first, I nailed it. I was spending the entire summer as an intern at Complex. For 8 weeks, I was in that office working for people I eventually wanted to work with.
As August rolled around, the momentum was still going. All of my classes were exactly what I needed them to be, creative. There weren’t any boring textbooks or lesson plans from professors, who were clearly there to collect a check. We were working in the radio station, creating content and tv shows. We were using our brains for something more than collecting useless information. It was beautiful.
After graduation, I moved back to NY. Seeing that NY had always been the Mecca for the most popular events, art shows, and concerts, I figured my momentum would only keep going. I’d get a job, work during the week and make moves during the weekend. Simple right?
Now, we’re here.
My life has become a routine. I wake up, go to work, go home, go to sleep, and repeat. Don’t get me wrong, (as my parents remind me to be after growing tired of my complaints), I’m completely grateful for having a job. But I’ve grown so content with a consistent paycheck that I can barely see my dreams. Sometimes, we get so complacent with our routines that we push our dreams further and further away. Today becomes tomorrow and tomorrow becomes the next day and so on and so forth.
Being creative and getting to know what’s in an artists head really put the battery in my back. It fueled my curiosity and inspired me to do better. It was the reason I was excited to wakeup in the morning. Now, am I going to quit my job to embark on an inspirational journey like they do in the movies? As much as I’d love to, that’s just not realistic. Bills don’t stop because you’re out following your dreams. But I have decided to make a change.
I’ve decided to stop squandering my talents and do the things I love. I’m on a mission to work on my hip hop writing, step up my photography, and most importantly step outside of my creative box. By pushing myself to bring my dreams into reality, I can see myself getting back on the right track.