I’ve always done “the predicable.” Ever since I was a young gal I’ve always have a plan and I’ve always known what I wanted to do. I decided as a freshmen in high school I wanted to work in public relations and I knew what I had to do to get there; from college to internships to jobs, I had a plan. And almost every semester and summer from freshman to senior year I did an internship to gain experience in the industry and network. I loved it. I loved what I was doing, and after I graduated I got my first “big girl” PR job. I worked there for 3.5 years and throughout my time, improved my skills, gained experience, and traveled; I had some good days, and some bad days, but overall enjoyed my job and made some really amazing friends. I looked forward to going to work because I had a passion for the fast paced industry, and I got to work with some of my best friends everyday. Of course I was happy….but there were always two other passions of mine I contemplated exploring – baking & cooking.
That expression “All Day I Dream About Food” is real my friends because all day I would dream about food; what new recipes should I test out that night or that weekend, what would taste good with coconut flour, do white chocolate chips and almond butter go together in a cookie, how long should I braise a short rib, can coconut milk be a good vegan substitute for frosting, what would compliment a gluten free flatbread, must create gluten free pumpkin donuts…you get the picture. Again, I enjoyed what I did during the day, but after-hours it was time to play in the kitchen…and eat. Plus my co-workers loved me because I would use them as taste testers for my treats :).
Back to the whole “doing the predictable thing.” It’s odd because one part of my brain is focused on “safe choices,” making sure everything goes a certain way inside my comfort zone, but then I have this other side of my brain that is literally like “F*** it,” life it too short not to take risks, have fun and do what you love. Most people “say this” but not many follow through with it.
So you can imagine how surprised I was at myself when in Fall 2015 I decided that I was going to leave my job and go to culinary school. WHAT… 5 years ago I would have never done such a thing. I was on a certain career path, and I was going to work hard and stay on that path. I’m certainly not modest when it comes to my work ethic. I know I’m a loyal and dedicated worker, and will always give 110% no matter what job I’m in. It’s extremely important to me to stay on a strong career path, but not every step has to be planned out or set in stone. Sometimes what you think might be the next step…just might not be.
It wasn’t an easy decision to leave my job and go to culinary school, but I knew if I didn’t do it now, I would keep putting it off. Ultimately my dream is to have my own bakery/cafe some day, and this was the next step I needed to take to get there. We all have those tough moments in life when we doubt ourselves. I’ll be honest, leaving my job, starting school and moving to a new city where I didn’t have many friends or family (seriously like I knew 3 people, ha!) was not the easiest thing. Moving away is harder for some than others, but you’ve got to stay positive and keep your eye on the prize (I need to take my own advice somedays!) And just when I start to doubt myself, I get a text or email from a friend or a message on LinkedIn saying how proud they are of me for following my dreams. Then I lift my head back up again and remember why I’m doing this – because this is who I am, and I love it.
If you love something go for it, you might just surprise yourself. If you’re interested, you can read all about my journey through culinary school here.
So cheers to those who have taken a chance, cheers to those who have stepped outside their comfort zone and cheers to those who have done the unpredictable.