I also watched the film ‘Bohemian Rhapsody‘ today, and I haven’t stopped thinking about both all day.
‘We’re four misfits who don’t belong together, playing to the other misfits, the outcasts, who don’t think they belong either. But we belong to them‘. – Freddie Mercury (Rami Malek)
That describes me, and what I’m doing currently, really well.
From May 2017 to September 2018, I did jobs that related to the degree I worked three years for back at University. I had an early midlife crisis where I thought I was wasting away and felt as if I had to use my degree for an IT job. To then save up for a mortgage or something else, and then move up whatever company I landed at.
I never felt so miserable in this reality. In June I began the steps to what I’m doing now; freelance writing and podcasting. I love it. Simply and plainly.
I don’t care that I’m earning a large wage packet anymore. I don’t care that I can’t save up as much as I could before. I don’t care that I have an overdraft. I’m doing what I know is right. That’s all that matters.
But the mental health is always something that’s on my mind, to keep it in check, and to make sure that I’m doing what I can in this new ‘career’ of mine. I’ve had anxiety, I’ve had panic attacks, and my heart would even race constantly last year at that job, even though I’d be sitting down at a workstation for 7 hours a day. My Apple Watch alerting me to this almost each day was one of the first signs that something had to change soon.
Success is relative in this day and age. To someone it is a house, to someone else it’s to raise a family, to another it’s to just sweep the same road each day and to have his supper ready at dusk. For someone to mock someone else’s idea of success, is to me, not only wrong, but a mark that they aren’t happy either, and they’re battling something they’re simply not ready to admit. Or, never will.
Someone like Jeff and his post from today, is to me, another example that we should all support one another in our quest to find our own success. It doesn’t need to be a ‘like’ from Twitter, a ‘reaction’ in Slack, or a ‘Show Note Link’ in a podcast you listen to. Just support.
It’s the main reason why I’ve named my collection of podcasts ‘The Outpost Network‘. It’s looking over established people, looking over them from a distance. Seeing what they produce, but not being in the same group as them. Not wanting to fit in. Not looking up to them. To be the outcast, to look over from a distant outpost, stuck right into the ground and refuses to move or fall down. While the podcasts I do that fall into this umbrella of ‘Outpost Network’, are purely based on passions, and talking to people who care about them.
I don’t look at page views. I don’t look at overall podcast listens (admittedly not after the first day of a new episode anyway).
I have people on that I believe could, can, and will contribute a great deal to the topic at hand. It’s never been about ‘Who can I get that could expand the reach of the podcast‘, only to talk to people that interest me.
That’s what Queen did. And what Freddie Mercury did. He had contracted AIDS around 1986, but up until six months before his death in 1991, he still gave it his all to vocals that the remaining members of the band worked on, which turned into this song, his final contribution:
Jeff made a lot of great points. There were plenty that I’ve dwelled on in the past, some as recent as November last year, but no more.
We all have low moments that make us doubt ourselves, but it’s the faith and the confidence and the drive that keeps us going.
We all do this for a reason.
Never quit, ever. Otherwise how will you know what could have been?
I said this before, but if I get no comments, no feedback from what I write or podcast, I don’t mind. Because I do it for me. Self-respect is what matters.
Anything else is a bonus.
As the film said in one particular scene, don’t waste time in being a victim. Decide in who you are and what you were born to be, and light up that sky.
Regardless if it has a ceiling or not.
So to conclude:
I’m Daryl Baxter. I’m a writer and I know this is right for me. Who the fuck are you?