"If you could do ANYTHING right now, what would you do?"
"what do you want to be when you grow up?"
As it relates to work & a career, the amount of answers I have had to this question is endless.
In elementary school, the answer was "be a firefighter".
Sometime in high school, the answer was "become a pharmacist".
Starting college, the answer was "be a speech pathologist". After graduation that answer changed to "lead a non-profit" and "travel Europe for a year".
A few years later: "be a wilderness guide."
"what do you want to do?"
The truth is that I've never felt 100% confident answering the "What do you want to do?" question. I think growing up I got confused with "What do you want to do?" and "What should you do?"
I've spent a lot of time trying to figure out what I should do. What is the best thing to do? Would that be fulfilling? What leads to success?
When I wanted to "become a pharmacist," I wasn't thinking about passion or fulfillment; I was motivated my money and status.
As I went through college, I discovered my values and goals, which shifted me away from choosing a job based on financial concerns. I wanted to interact with & help people, feel inspired by work, & do something that has a positive impact. In that season, I chose Speech Pathology.
I second-guessed graduate school for Speech Pathology from not wanting to do long distance with Alan and chose to start work at a university instead. Knowing the university was just temporary, I tried really hard to think about what was next.
I thought about all of the organizations I was inspired by at that time and realized so many of them were non-profits. I worked full-time and decided to purse a graduate degree in Non-Profit Management on the side.
After getting a degree in non-profit management, as we were making plans to travel Europe, we took an abrupt turn and chose work at an adventure camp and do full-time ministry.
As I look back at all of the jobs I've had, I could have never guessed how this question was actually answered.
I think that what you should do and what you want to do and what you actually do all get mixed together.
What you actually do is the reality. These are the jobs I have had and what I have spent my time doing. I didn't really make it to those other careers I mentioned before: on the way I was a lifeguard, skating rink assistant manager, skating rink guard, substitute teacher, camp counselor, wilderness guide, coordinator of alumni relations, and director of a gap year program.
I am thankful for these jobs. They're not all glamorous, but I've worked really hard, learned so much, and have done by best to make decisions along the way.
"what do you want to do?"
Back to this question.
The past two years, I've been working at an adventure camp in the hill country of Texas. I've been the director of a gap year program where I've had the opportunity to take teenagers on wilderness trips, go on big adventures, & teach people about faith.
I've had some really incredible days in this job. I think of the days spent guiding trips where I've been on the top of actual mountains, empowering girls, and seeing Jesus.
This has not been a job for the faint of heart. It's been very demanding & a lot of sacrifice was required for this work.
While I know this is what I was meant to do in this season, I knew it was just that—a season.
There was still the lingering question: "What do you want to do?"
a side hustle
About a year and a half ago, I started a blog.
The purpose of the blog was to share recipes and wellness tips. I found so much joy from sharing, being creative, and connecting with so many people.
I created my blog with potential in mind. Sure, I started my blog as a "passion project", but I also wondered if I could grow it into something. I built the entire thing from scratch (with guidance & support from Sparks Media Concept).
I invested so much into my blog—mostly time and some money.
Blogging very quickly turned into a side hustle. I worked hours and hours to create content, improve my website, and prove to companies I was a worthwhile partner.
Whenever I wasn't guiding a wilderness trip or discipling students, I was blogging. There's so much nitty gritty that goes into blogging and I would wake up really early or stay up super late working. Editing pictures, learning SEO, researching WordPress plugins, and making Pinterest pins were regular weekly tasks.
I viewed my passion project as a side hustle, which often felt like a second full-time job.
Taking a risk
Starting a side hustle is risky. I mentioned the invested time, finances, and vulnerability that goes into it.
There's feelings of doubt, fear of failure, and insecurity.
When I started my blog, I gave myself one year. I wanted to see if I could pay back what was originally invested into my blog and turn this side hustle into a business. In one year I would examine if I still felt the same passion and joy I did in the beginning.
Do not for a second think that this was an upward trajectory. In the beginning, I was definitely losing money on something that very much felt like a job.
I reminded myself of my one year timeline, kept my focus on my goals, and did the best I could in the season I was in.
where i'm at now
"If you could do ANYTHING right now, what would you do?"
I'd be a blogger.
I have been really fortunate to make this a reality while also working in camp ministry. However, I've constantly felt myself pulled in two directions.
Some days I love being off the grid and on an adventure with students. Other days I find so much joy being in the kitchen creating a recipe.
Blogging has been a side hustle but it's at the point where it's not sustainable for me to keep it that way. I want to give it my full attention.
What that means: I'm leaving my job to blog. I'm taking Jordo's World full-time.
a pep talk for both of us
There's risk involved with chasing your dreams. Time, money, insecurity, doubt, failure—every single one of those fears have crossed my mind.
I'm not going to let those fears stop me from going after something I'm passionate about. That sounds incredibly cheesy, but instead, I am choosing to let those fears push and motivate me.
Is it all going to work out? Who knows. But I would rather answer that question by trying my hardest and taking the risk, rather than always wondering.
If it doesn't work out, then it doesn't work out.
You're allowed to pivot and even change your mind. You're not looked into one thing for the rest of your life.
It's not always clear what to do. Every day we're presented with options and decisions, and it's our choice to take advantage of our opportunities that come our way. We will often try things and fail or chase something without catching it.
It's up to us to not settle, try something new, and keep chasing. There's seasons of patiently waiting, hustling hard, working on a passion project after spending all day in a job that pays that bills, and days where it's about dreaming big.
If there's something you could do right now, what would it be?
For me right now, it's Jordo's World. It's blogging, creating recipes, showing up on Instagram, and investing in this business.
I'm incredibly thankful for YOU for helping me get here. If you're reading this, it means you've invested in my dreams. You're an important part in this community and you mean so much to me.
Thank you for trusting me in your kitchen, for showing up on Instagram account, and sharing this content with your people. I am thankful for ways you support and encourage me. You all are the best and the reason I'm able to make this decision.
Thank you times a million and I'm excited for what's to come.
because of this decision
Our adventure camp jobs required us to live and work in the middle of the Texas Hill Country. Leaving our jobs means no longer living at camp, which means we will be moving.
We’re moving to St. Louis, Missouri! We both grew up in St. Louis, but haven’t lived there since before high school. We’re renting a little house in South City & pumped to be close to parks, restaurants, & friends.
So basically thks month we will both start new jobs, move to a new place, join in a new community, and live in a very new lifestyle.
We’re definitely still figuring things out, but more details to come on the details of moving & new jobs, but we are excited for what's to come.