I don't know much about Vegas or Atlantic City as I've never been to either venue. I have, however been forced to play hands that I was dealt in my life and as a professional, I've played several; some good, some bad. At times I didn't know when to hold or to fold, but as I look back I quickly realized that I never once truly bet on myself or what I had to offer. Interestingly enough I went to bat for other companies that I've worked for and when it came to me, I almost always folded. I've worked for some great establishments like Apple and Audible to name a few, but I was never confident that if the chips were down, my employers would bet on me. And how can I blame them?
During my personal development these past 3 months, it's come to my realization that I alone am fully responsible for effecting change in my life and my career. Not a single person can do what I do—the way that I can do it. From something as simple as my unique speech pattern to the way I approach crafting a film score for my clients, everything about my being can be imitated, but never duplicated. Finally, out of all the things I've done to improve my self worth and personal/professional development, this one thought changed everything. It stems from the most fundamental of ideals—we are all unique. Applying this mantra of sorts to one's everyday routine can have major life-altering effects. This isn't to be confused with believing in oneself or abilities, which is a superpower in and of itself. Yet and still, accepting that you are NOT just another number or gear in a major corporate machine will alter the way you see yourself and your goals.
I'm not suggesting that you should all go up in arms and quit your jobs, as where you are right now may possess a wealth of skills and knowledge that you need BEFORE you show your hand. What I am saying is you must be prepared to invest in yourself in every positive way imaginable—and by positive I mean in ways that have tangible results that can lead you to a healthier, wealthier and happier life. Now your ideals for a happy life may not include wealth or riches at all, and that's the beauty of it! No two success stories have to be alike. They do, however all stem from ideals of successful people who placed all their chips down for their personal cause without flinching. The thing they were all thinking? No one can do it like I can and you know what? They've proven that they're absolutely right.
There will be bumps in the road and life is as far from a game as you could possibly get. Still, you have to play that 'full house' or 'royal flush' despite your fears and apprehensions. I was a freelance film composer and mix engineer for a very long time with no clear or concise set of goals. Since I decided that I was going to bet on myself from here on out, everything began to make sense. I DO have all the tools I need to be successful, whether I was born with them or acquired them along the way. I DO NOT need to invest another cent of finance or energy into any company or entity without first being willing to place that same investment or more into myself. This is why I decided to step away from the corporation I worked with off and on since 2008. They were good to me, but not because their primary goal was to invest in me. Again, this is no knock on them, but rather on myself for not being willing to remove the safety net of a "good job with benefits" to see what I'm truly capable of.
I don't know what your path or purpose is. I do know one thing though. The 'House' always wins!