I woke up this morning with a pretty great revelation. The revelation that I’ve been able to maintain a solid media career independently for the last year and not really lose a step.
In 2009, when I first said I was going to make media a career choice, I was told that once you’re in everybody loves you, but when you’re out, “no one will know you.” It was basically an “insider vs outsider” conversation. I won’t lie, I believed it. I wasn’t concerned about making anymore friends besides the ones I came in with at that point. What I didn’t take into account is who I was at my core. How valuable I was outside of the game, which is what got me a spot in it in the first place. I wasn’t somebody’s “boy they hooking up”. I wasn’t handpicked for an opportunity. I literally got in as an unknown with a lob from a classmate.
I was told “You got the stuff you can’t teach” and I got my first full time job because I knew what Twitter was,I had retail management experience and I was creating videos to put on YouTube in 2007-2008. At that time it wasn’t what the average person or media personality was doing. I had no idea how much value that built for me.
Present day, I don’t have a national platform, nor do I have a multi-million or billion dollar company backing me or setting me up for success and I am still creating great content moments. I love talk radio, so podcast are lifesavers for my creative juices. I’m able to take even more risk now with content as a “free agent” and it fells amazing.
I couldn’t do it alone though. I have a handful of real friends in the industry to thank. The ones who called the day they knew I was heading back to Chicago with no real plan. Who didn’t understand why I didn’t get some opportunities, but still didn’t let their level of opportunities dwindle or die because of it. People that if nothing else, respect me for the work I put in and the effort I give. I “out media” and “out content” the big dogs here in the midwest, even if the numbers don’t reflect it. A marketing budget will solve that though.
I just wanted to recognize how thankful, grateful and blessed I am to still be doing a lot of things that I love, even if it’s only part of the time. To my real ones. Thank you.