Obtaining any position comes down to the need for experience. If you’re not attending college, it’s still entirely possible, if not more so, to get this experience. When you finish high school, you’ll be debt-free and will probably have very few or no bills to pay, and you’ll therefore be in a much better position than a college graduate with student loans to take on lower-paying or even volunteer positions. If your dream job does require experience, then the best way to reach your goal is to spend time working and building your skills. If you wait to pursue your ideal career because you aren’t qualified right out of high school and get a paying job instead, you run the risk of never being able to spend enough time building a solid experience base to showcase when applying for positions in whatever creative field interests you.
Even if you do need an immediate source of income, you should try your hardest to devote time to both a paying job and positions that offer experience in the field that interests you. There are countless organizations that are looking for individuals willing to “donate” their services and talents, and although you won’t be paid, there will be a much larger payoff in the future once you’re qualified for the positions that you really want. Non-profit organizations or organizations that ask for volunteers are great places to begin building experience and bolstering you résumé for the paying positions you’ll be able to apply for in the near future.
If you’re discouraged by the prospect of not making money doing something that you are passionate about, don’t let yourself feel down. Explore your options. You can look for paying positions related to what you want to ultimately do, but it may be more fruitful to look for volunteer positions instead. The short-term payoff might be less than you’re hoping for, but the long-term gains will exceed your expectations. If you can value gaining experience over earning money, you can better prepare yourself to pursue your dream job much sooner than if you get right into a paying job that offers you no relevant experience. By investing your time into gaining experience, you’ll be investing in yourself and your future rather than short-term financial gains.
Check out our blog posts soon to follow that will offer advice for working toward specific creative careers!
What’s your dream job? How are you planning to work toward achieving it?