'Marcia's Freedom to Roam' - Photo by Jeff Silva

'Marcia's Freedom to Roam' - Photo by Jeff Silva

“Sometimes you’ve got to let everything go – purge yourself. If you are unhappy with anything . . . whatever is bringing you down, get rid of it. Because you’ll find that when you’re free, your true creativity, your true self comes out.” – Tina Turner

Need motivation for a career change?

When I knew Marcia Estarija in high school, she was very involved in social causes and artistic endeavors. However, after graduating college, she somehow found herself caught up in an accounting career that provided little joy.

How did that happen?

“College doesn’t make you aware of all the options you have for your career,” she points out.

So instead of following her initial dream of working in the music industry, she compromised her dream in order to satisfy cultural convention.

“I was miserable.”

After just a little over a year working at a large, well-paying accounting firm, Marcia found the courage and motivation to make a creative career change.

Part of the motivation was due to the misery. The other factor was inspiration from the movie Fight Club. Brad Pitt’s character, Tyler Durden, suggested the following point which made a lasting impression on Marcia — “It isn’t until you lose everything that you’re free to do anything.”

In a recent podcast interview for Beyond Pickles and Doughnuts, Marcia talks about how important it is to realize that we have freedom to make choices beyond the constraints placed upon us by our peers, family, and society at large.

After feeling that she no longer “needed to follow along somebody else’s vision of what life was supposed to be,” Marcia finally believed it possible to follow her passions.

Treating life like an adventure.

Treating life like an adventure.

Willing to take on a challenge.

Willing to take on a challenge.

But what if I don’t know what career I want?

If you know you want a different career, but aren’t sure what career you’d like to pursue, you could do what Marcia did – combine things you love doing.

In her case, she tried to meld her love of nonprofit work with her passion for branding. She now works as a Senior Associate for i.e. communications, a policy advocacy and media consulting firm for foundations and nonprofits.

It’s a long way away from her accounting days, but the result of her creative journey is that she’s found a career that brings her joy.

Key Insights and Advice

Here are just a few ideas that helped her make her creative career change:

  • When making a change, be constantly aware of your journey. Be conscious enough to continually assess if you’re headed in the right direction.
  • Surround yourself with “your fans.” Be sure to have a network of friends that are supportive of what you’re doing, and who provide constant inspiration through their own endeavors.
  • Don’t feel like you’re weird for wanting a change. It’s actually quite normal for people to go though *multiple* career changes in life.
  • Don’t let risks keep you bound to a life you don’t love.
  • And keep yourself open to the plethora of possibilities the world has to offer.

Checkout this audio to learn more about Marcia’s story.

Also, if you’re a nonprofit that needs a communications strategy, or if you’re just interested in discussing your own marketing and branding with someone who loves brainstorming creative, practical solutions checkout i.e. communications and drop Marcia a line.

You can also become a fan of i.e. communications on Facebook.