“Yeah, I just have a gut feeling about this.”
We’ve heard and said it thousands of times in our lives, both for good and bad instances. Whether it’s a job, a person, or even a place to go eat, our intuition drives us both consciously and subconsciously. These “feelings,” and how we respond to them, are a large part of what shapes us as individuals.
Now, due to the fact that intuition isn’t a concrete thing, there will always be people who dissuade you from listening to them or even saying them out loud. We all have our biases that also shape us as human beings, and unfortunately through the years we start listening to our little voice in our head less and less. Forgive my candor, but this is actually quite sad. You can miss out on a lot in life because of fear.
And listening to your intuition can instead get you your dream.
I’m not a special person. I wasn’t born into fame or wealth. I was just your average “Joan,” raised in a tiny blip on the radar town in the lovely Lone Star State of Texas. I’d always had a flair for the dramatic, so it was no surprise that through the years I would find myself immersed into the performing arts.
Ever since I can remember, I’ve wanted to live in New York City. I didn’t care what I was doing there, so long as I was there. All of my favorite movies and TV shows took place there, and everything I saw about it was magical. Even though it was within the same country, New York City felt like a pipe dream, something I could never achieve. (Especially when you add in the fact that I’m an actress; talk about stiff competition.)
My college had a program that allowed us to visit the city and perform a show there. Since I was cast as the lead, I finally got to visit, which took that little candle flame of a dream and turned it into a furnace. I looked into any and every way to move to the city permanently, but was met with setbacks along the way. It simply seemed out of reach.
Fast-forward to graduation. Being an impatient overachieving girl, two weeks out of college and not having a solid job offer was eating me alive. I was either way under- or way over-qualified for everything I was looking at from a corporate standpoint, and trying to make it as an artist right out of school was near impossible. I had a little gig at a community theatre lined up. But that was it. Nothing stable.
Like any good millennial, I took my frustrations to social media. I can’t remember the exact message, but it was something along the lines of “I hate job searching, I already miss college.” (Although it was definitely much whinier and self-pitying.)
A dear friend of mine told me all about Carousel Industries. The opportunity for growth, the incredible training program, the amount of money I could make, having four seasons… you name it, Carousel had it. Only thing was, I had to move my entire life up to Connecticut to take the job.
"Connecticut? What’s up in Connecticut other than miserable winters? What about my life here? My friends, my family, everything. I just have to leave them?”
“It’s only for two-ish years, Tricia. Then you can move back home as an Account Executive. Or anywhere you want! Not to mention, you’re only about two hours each way from New York City and Boston. You can just take weekend or even day trips there if you want.”
"I’ll send you my resume.”
It slipped out of my mouth without hesitation. I was actually surprised at myself for responding so hastily. I immediately called my mother, the soundboard of my life, and asked for her opinion. She had the same reaction as I did, despite the distance. She made some slight about how I’d be perfect for sales, which I laughed off, and sent in my resume.
This happened on a Tuesday, and by Friday I had an offer letter in my hand. They wanted me here in a week. I hadn’t even given them an answer and they were already making travel plans to help me get up there in a week.
Now the panic sets in. Wait, this is all happening so fast! Am I making the right decision? I couldn’t help but shake the feeling that this was right for me. Beyond all reason, it just felt right.
A lot of tears and anxiety attacks later, I sent off my paperwork and found an apartment (all from Texas.) I even lived in a hotel for two weeks while they were preparing my place for me. It was scary, difficult, and even painful at first. I didn’t know a soul, and people were different in New England than they were at home. There were several tear-filled calls home questioning if I’d made the right choice. What if that “little-voice” telling me I needed to go was wrong?
Jumping ahead a year or so, I’ve found a couple of theatres that I love working with, I’m doing well at work, and it’s time to start discussing my transition to the field. The first thought of course was to go home. I mean I had everything set up there. Everyone seemed to expect that’s what I was going to do as well, so it almost seemed like a done deal.
Half-joking, I murmured to my boss, “Well I can go anywhere right? What about New York City?” He looked at me both shocked and amused. A little Texan blonde living it up in the big city?
“I can talk to the director and get back to you.”
Today, I’m writing this blog from my office in 7 Penn, Manhattan. All of this was because of a little voice saying “check this out, Tricia. This could be exactly what you were looking for.”
Now, there have been plenty of times that the opposite has happened; our intuition isn’t perfect. They say though that the things we regret in life are the things we didn’t do rather than the things we do wrong, and this is what I live by. Allow yourself to listen to that little voice. You never know what you could be missing out on.
A Native Texan now living in the magnificent New York City, Tricia Howard is an artist gone rogue who ended up in the wonderful world of technology. With a B.A. in Theatre Arts and interests ranging from Star Wars to Opera, she brings a unique and artistic perspective to her clients and the tech world. When she’s not solving business problems, you can find her singing, painting, and doing copious amounts of jigsaw puzzles.