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The Story of the Girl in the Hairdressers

Don’t sell your dreams with the hope of buying them back later

By Jamie JacksonPublished 2 years ago 5 min read
The Story of the Girl in the Hairdressers
Photo by Harley-Davidson on Unsplash

I was getting my hair cut recently and struck up a conversation with the girl washing my hair.

She was a singer and dancer but her drama school application got rejected so she decided to learn hairdressing as a side-career until she had enough money to leave and try dancing once more.

She was 20 years younger than me.

I told her she should give up hairdressing immediately and follow her passion before it's too late.

There is no such thing as a side-career, just a career. Don’t make plans to juggle what you love with what you hate as a compromise.

You don’t need a plan, you just need a passion. The things you love pull you in, you’ll be drawn to them like gravity. No one needs to diarise inspiration when they're pursuing their dreams.

You only need a plan when you're forcing yourself to do something as a means to an end.

Hairdressing was her plan. Dancing was her passion.

I knew she would get stuck cutting hair and never go back to drama school. She'd get comfortable, older, rusty, filled up with doubt. Then she would turn bitter.

I've seen it more times than you can imagine.

"You have to take advantage of an opportunity of a lifetime in the lifetime of the opportunity." – Eric Thomas

By cutting hair, she was selling out. She was choosing unhappiness over uncertainty. She was selling her dream for a monthly bribe in her bank account.

Ever notice how jobs pay you too little to feel adequately rewarded or recognised but just enough so you won't leave?

There's a reason. It's a bribe. Don't call it a wage, see it for what it really is. It’s a compromise. It’s selling your dreams for convenience.

I Sold Out

I played music in bands for nearly twenty years. Everyone in those circles talked about “making it” (getting signed to a record label) and the danger of “selling out”.

Selling out meant abandoning artistic expression in favour of commercial success. For example, allowing a big record label to sign your band so they can change your name, image and give you new songs.

This was deemed heresy in the music biz.

I haven't played music for years but selling out is still a concept I identify with. It's been ground into me, not only by music but by years of corporate work where I really did sell out.

Anyone can sell out. All you have to do is sell your dreams to the highest bidder.

This is why I could see the mistake the girl in the hairdressers was making. I’d done it and she was doing it.

Are you doing it right now?

You want to be a writer but that lawyer job sure pays well, you want to be an artist but that job in finance means a nice house and car, you want to run your own business but paid employment means the security of a pension pot.

It's ironic, most bands who "make it" are labelled as sellouts, but really they're just successful, whereas most people who are labelled successful, such as lawyers, accountants, chief operating officers, and so forth,  are the actual sellouts.

The selling out compromise we make might make sense now, but it won’t in the long term.

Understand this: You cannot sell out forever. No one can.

Regret ( or perhaps, in this case, truth)  will catch up with you sooner or later, and the later it does, the more it will hurt.

We push art and creativity aside in a gamble to buy them back later with the filthy lucre made from our time in the employment trenches.

This is a mistake as no one gets to buy back their time or dreams.

Repression causes depression and the cure is expression.

Selling out is repression. It's pushing down your dreams and expressive needs and taking money for the displeasure. And just like that, you get depressed.

What to Do Instead of Selling Out

First, acknowledge your passion. You know what it is, but you pretend you don't because, right now, it's easier to ignore. After all, pursuing passion means an obligation, hard work, and effort.

But ignoring your passion will ultimately become so uncomfortable you'll try to escape yourself. You'll anaesthetize yourself with consumerism, Netflix, drink, maybe drugs.

Years will pass and your life will be so off course you won't even recognise who you are. This happens to the majority of people.

Right now, your mind is tricking you into taking the convenient route, but no one grows or becomes who they can be through convenience.

Truth knows you. It's your intuition, your gut feel, your inner voice. Your calling. It will follow you around, tapping you on the shoulder in the day and whispering in your ear at night.

Truth can never sell out. Truth can never be bought, sold, or commodified.

Truth is not a safe drip-feed of cash nor is it the spoils of a spiritual war you're fighting every day in the carpet-tiled trenches.

Truth is the real you.

You don't have to be a sellout. You think you do because you can't see a clear path out of the woods, whereas the employment route is well lit and predictable.

The mind loves predictable. But truth urges you to have faith and take the blind route, truth tells you to be the light.

I don't know what the girl in the hairdresser did. Probably what I and so many other people I know did, she continued on the well lit and predictable path and sold her dreams for security.

"If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for ordinary." – Jim Rohn

The truth will be tapping that girl on the shoulder. Her monthly bribe will only keep the wolf from the door for so long.

It is never too late to change. Selling out feels like selling your soul, but here is a great secret: your soul isn't for sale.

Selling out is a temporary transaction, a pretend exchange, you can have your truth back any time you want. All you've got to do is decide.

There's nothing more powerful in the universe than a made-up mind.

You can't be bought or sold. You're priceless. It's time to start acting like it.

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About the Creator

Jamie Jackson

Between two skies and towards the night.

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