RECHELLE BALANZAT

Artist, Thinker, Entrepreneur

What If I'm Crazy?

When I decided to venture out on my own and start working for myself, my whole family thought I was crazy, especially my grandmother.  As immigrants from the Philippines, my family are true believers in the American Dream.  They believed in graduating from a good university, getting a good job and saving money for a family.  There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that dream.  I just had another dream for myself.  I saw myself rising above the status quo.  Why not?  I’m young, educated, capable, and most of all - hungry.

I am still very hungry.  Part of that hunger is reminiscent of the physical hunger I felt during my childhood.  The other part stems from a deep desire to prove myself.  I have an urgent drive that I just couldn’t appease by following the accepted scripted route.

So I rolled the dice and took a chance on myself.  I am the biggest investor in myself anyway right?  I left my corporate “stable” job in 2009 to travel through Florence, Vienna, Budapest, and Prague.  Everyone I worked with thought I was crazy.  I was quitting my job while others were losing theirs.  This was during the time of the economic crisis, so people were panicking.  To me it was an awakening.  It was the surest sign that the idea of a “stable job” and “security” does not exist.

I remember speaking with a few colleagues of mine who were stressed and worried.  They had families with kids in high school, some in college.  Their livelihood and their children’s livelihood depended upon their “stable job”.  I could still recall the fear and insecurity in their eyes. 

I wasn’t sure of the path ahead of me or the kinds of obstacles I’d be facing.  But I knew what I didn’t want.  And that was enough to make me take a leap of faith.

Maybe I am crazy?  Maybe everyone else is crazy for buying into the same dream?  Maybe you need to be a little bit crazy to follow a different path.  Maybe we’re not crazy, but life is.  And our job is to try and make sense of it all - as crazy as that may sound.

Whatever it is, I hope you don't brush off your next thought or idea - however crazy it may seem.  Who knows?  It could be the spark that changes your life, and maybe even the world.

Don’t let the noise of others’ opinion drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.
— Steve Jobs

Thanks for reading,

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