Every now and then I always go through a phase of feeling guilty of pursuing a path I find to be the easiest for me. This led me to realize that the hardest path is not always the right path to follow.Throughout my university career as well as my professional life so far, I have found myself excelling in courses and roles I put the least amount of effort in. That being said, all these courses were my electives, especially the ones involved in the category of art and art history, while the tasks that I enjoyed the most at work were of the creative nature. Regardless though, these are the works that have come the easiest to me and have brought in the most recognition.

I have always found myself wondering whether pursuing a career in the creative industry is just me trying to escape hard work since it comes so easy to me. Courses such as finance and accounting have always been the most torturous ones to go through and I always end up with a shitty mark. When it came to work, tasks that involved reports and paperwork seemed the hardest to accomplish, the kind I could never, ever seem to get right. In all honesty though, despite investing countless hours into the coursework or the tasks, I recognize I didn’t really invest my brain in it. I just couldn’t.

Whereas, on the other hand, I realize I invest more brain power than hours in tasks or courses that I really have an interest in. This, in turn, makes me feel like I am cruising through, not really putting in a lot of effort. This further leads to me developing this somewhat of an illusion that I am trying to escape hard work by pursuing a path that seems to be relatively easier.

This, I realized today, is not true. 

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Just because something comes easier to you does not mean pursuing that path is a no no. It is okay to be good at something without feeling like you’re breaking your neck for it. In fact, I believe that should  be the path you decide to follow.

Doing something you love will require you to invest both your brain power and time. However, you’ll always feel like you’re cruising through because you’ll enjoy the struggle, at least I do. Regardless of the fact that I do spend most of my nights struggling to teach myself new tricks in photoshop and illustrator; which do not always come easily btw, I do not feel like I am dragging myself through hell.

Now, if I were to spend the same brain power and time trying to figure out the NVP of an investment of a firm in a project for my finance assignment, I’d be drained and frustrated by the end of it. So, does that mean I should pursue that path just because it tortures challenges my intellect? I don’t think so.

Time and time again, I am getting convinced that we should follow the path that suits our intellect and passion not the one that suits our pockets or the views of our society. Yes, it is a better idea to pursue a path intelligently in order to meet the key elements to your survival, such as having a decent salary, but going beyond that is just not worth it.

I’d rather be earning enough to pay my rent and bills and having a career that quenches my creative and intellectual thirst than having a career that quenches the thirst of my bank account at the expense of my hopes and dreams.

To be honest, I wrote this article when I was in my 3rd year university and decided to revamp it a bit because it is still so relevant in my life. During my final year of university, I decided to take the plunge and apply to a design school to pursue my second degree in Design. Now, I am working full time as a Marketing Coordinator, while I study Graphic Design at the prestigious OCAD U.

Considering my interest and passion in storytelling in terms of design and photography, I decided to focus on my Instagram, as well as my blog, and have developed a very healthy following and continue to grow even more every day. I followed my dreams and listened to my passion, which led me here and continue to inspire me to search within myself some more so I can consistently find paths I’d love to take. I am actually so lucky to be alive in an era where we have platforms that make it so easy to express our art and our voices. Thanks to Instagram and my blog, I feel more inspired and motivated to live an intentional life. My brain is always working on my next shoot, each time trying to better the last. My style in terms of photography and design is evolving and it is mainly due to the fact that I hold so much passion for these two media that I strive to experiment and better as the time goes by. Having a blog and Instagram requires consistency and commitment, this pushes me to continue and not stop as I know there are others that are expecting of me – and I am so glad that is the case 🙂

I have never been so sure of myself and of what I want in my life. This epiphany only came to me because I was in search of it; I was in search of myself and my soul. I continuously questioned myself and asked myself what I felt and why. Such interrogations made me realize my weaknesses and strengths so that I could fix the cracks, while hone my advantages and strive to achieve what I truly want.

A quote by Atticus really gets to me, it says, “We humans are tortured by not properly guessing what makes us happy.” I truly love this quote because it reflects the state most of us are in. When we don’t realize who we are and what we want, we just run around blindly in circles always ending up with yet another failed attempt of finding happiness. If we stop listening to the noise and search within, we will find what makes us happy and realize that it is not all that hard to achieve after all.

I hope I continue to stay determined on this journey as I am right now. Happiness really is a state of mind, provided you really get to know your mind.

Until next time, lovelies!

selfaware

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Join the discussion 13 Comments

  • Paras says:

    Hon , seriously you have written what exactly ive been thinking lately. Draining your energy into something you lovee and admire gives the greatest ever outcomes satisfaction. Perfectly summarised by you as always! How well you write?! Lol love reading your blogs!

  • Harris Q says:

    A wonderful read Fatima! An insightful post, yet very enjoyable. I really admire how colourful your writing is and the thoughtful message that’s always conveyed.

    P.s. Looking forward to the next post!

  • Jessica says:

    I loved reading this, good for you for realizing what you want to do with your life! You’re such a talented graphic designer and blogger, I just know you’re gonna make it far in your career and life. Which hopefully includes our group meeting up and going on travels together ?

    http://forblueskies.com

  • Sana Tariq says:

    This has been one of the most intimate piece of writing you have shared so far. Stuff like this makes for great reading. I love how you’re totally aware of yourself and what you want, since I have the privilege of knowing you. If I have to add my two bits in this, I’d say I agree with you. There’s no harm in doing what comes to you easily. That’s what makes your work life so amazing. However I am all for trying out different things, stepping out of your comfort zone, struggling with the abundant challenges life throws at you and then emerging out of all that as a winner. Not just once, but continuously. Please keep sharing more of YOURSELF through your blog, just like you did with this one xxx

    • Fatima Zehra says:

      Thank you so much for the detailed feedback, I truly admire you for both your personal and academic achievements and your two cents are always worth so much to me. Just to clarify, I support getting out of your comfort zone and trying out new things. For instance, blogging and putting myself out there was something I wasn’t initially comfortable about but I took the plunge and I am so glad I did. Now, I have some less burden on my shoulders when it comes to fear and feel more confident taking more risks. What I truly meant was that in the past I always felt I shouldn’t do photography, or design, or any such activity because it just came so so easily to me that it seemed like I am cheating. So i decided I shouldn’t, I should instead feel proud of it and continue working on it. Hope that clarifies 🙂

  • heidi says:

    As someone who has been working more than 30 years and this has involved many life and career paths, I can tell you that doing what is easy for the sake of the ease will never bring fulfillment. We all do what we have to but if you have a choice pick the path that lights a fire for more! For the first time in my life I am doing work that fills me with passion and there is no equal.

    • Fatima Zehra says:

      Hello Heidi, thank you for the comment, I absolutely agree. And just to clarify, I did not mean doing something just for the sake of easiness. I more so meant that I used to feel that I shouldn’t delve in to my creative endeavours because they seemed to come to me so easily that I felt I was almost cheating and it wasn’t worth exploring. So I wanted to say that sometimes happiness comes to you easily and that we shouldn’t dismiss it because it seems a sham or fake. Thanks again for reading 🙂

  • Jasmine says:

    Well written Fatima. This is a common struggle with most 20-somethings like myself…but I trust the process because I know it will eventually lead me to where I’m meant to be and who I’m meant to meet 😉

  • Fawad Ali says:

    throwing the truth out there left and right

  • Lily says:

    This is so true girl! And remember, what comes easy to you is actually quite difficult to others – what you do takes hard work and patience that a lot of people don’t have. Keep it up chica!

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