A lot can be said about reality T.V. being really, really bad. And, I won’t dispute that. I’ve seen more than enough dummies acting dumb, or people getting sloppy. It seems that when you peek in at people’s lives you see all kinds of crazy. There is more than one Saturday I’ve lost on regrettable reality.
But, one thing that I really love about reality is when it shows passionate people thriving off their talent. Fashion designers, chefs, home inspectors, mechanics, tattoo artists, hair stylists, vocalists, builders, dog walkers and so many more super talented people entertain me. But, more than entertain, they show how incredibly diverse success can be.
Growing up in the Midwest in the late 90s, success looked more homogenous. One could become a doctor, an engineer, a teacher, a business leader (like I did) or an attorney. Yeah, sure, there was even the odd architect. Think you’re an artist; try graphic design.
Success today is like Baskin’ Robins with 31-flavors of mind-blowing options. I love how young people today get to see all these role models and imagine a life on the road less traveled. I’m amazed by how many of my own not-so-young-anymore friends think about reinventing their careers to pursue a work life they never would have dared 10-years ago.
These are exciting times where options abound. Yet, regardless of whether your career is made in a mainstream way, or a super niche, unyielding tenacity and applied talent are foundational. Success is still not handed out for free. While reality T.V. contrives intense deadline driven scenarios to ferret out the flakes from the phenoms, real life has its weed-out process too. Happiness in your career can only be achieved if you love the work as much as the view from the top.
So, go out, be a horror movie makeup artist, just be sure to love it and be prepared to work your ass off. And when you do, you may find yourself out for (fake) blood on reality T.V. inspiring the next generation of dreamers.