Follow your dreams when choosing a Career

My son Josh was 3 years old when he hacked into hubby’s PC, (how he bypassed the password we still do not know) and as they say, “the rest is history.” The mouse was double the size of his little hand but yet he displayed excellent mouse control, aim and Game sense.

All he wanted to do was observe Dad while he participated in LANS, and play on Dads PC, following in Daddy’s footsteps. Despite my attempts to try to lure him to occupying his free time with outdoor activities, and as he grew older to participate in outdoor physical sports, PC Gaming, E-Sports came to him naturally, this is his MAGIC, his interest, natural talent and ability. So we gave up the fight and we empowered him to follow his dreams.

Since that day, he has spent every waking hour of spare time hidden in his dark bedroom behind his PC screens for the last 16 years, chirping the odds to his teammates, involved in his E-Sports Gaming community, blocked out from the physical world around him, nagging folks, chores, hiding behind those earphones focused on his goal to mastering his craft. Every Christmas and birthday without fail, all he wanted and still does, is money for him to put towards optimizing his PC equipment. An expensive hobby, I won’t lie!

Trying out for a new team became his past time and participating in leagues and competitions. His dream was to participate in the highest division in South African E-Sports and he ACHIEVED this dream! Sadly, the schools he attended did not offer E-Sports. During his matric year he approached the School Principal to start up an E-Sports team which he led and they participated in Inter-high school competitions.

When the time came to apply at Institutions for Tertiary studies, he too had no idea which field of studies to explore. We took a conventional approach, and he underwent a series of psychometric assessments and received some safe career guidance. He was not convinced that this was right for him. I have always pushed him to live life guided from the heart center and make decisions from this place because it makes sense to me despite what the rest have to say.

With whispers of conventional thoughts still strongly engrained in my belief system which I couldn’t silence, hindering me to act on this conventional safe guidance of studying towards a qualification which is said to assure you entrance into the workplace and hopefully earn a good living.

We followed this traditional approach and applied for the usual BCOM degrees at all the well known country wide Institutions and despite knowing that his heart was not there, we succumbed to the system anyway.

Fortunately he was not accepted and that steered us into taking an unconventional approach, and he chose to follow his dreams and is studying towards a BA: Game Design and Production at SAE Institue South Africa

We are nearing the end of his 1st year. It’s been a steep learning curve for him, as he never majored in Art in his high school career, but one thing we knew for sure was that he was Passionate about Gaming and has always dreamt of developing his own PC Game one day.

Today, after he wrote his second last exam, he said “I am so glad I never got into that said Institution, because I would have hated my life. I am surrounded by people excited about the same things, in a colorful environment, with Creative minds, people with the same passions and values. His eyes lit up with excitement and of course I broke down in tears of JOY that he confirmed that he is in the right place.

My mission for him to follow his heart and pave his way in a career which speaks to things he enjoys doing, surrounded by like minded individuals has been achieved.

And this AHA moment put to bed any fears and doubts that he was headed in the wrong direction. I am not saying that he is guaranteed to earn millions, but this route has the potential for him to be fulfilled with the work he does and possibly doing what he loves may even make earning millions seem less relevant.

A staggering 85 percent of the population are unhappy in their work, and this is where we spend most time!

Whatever your goal or dream is and whatever your definition of SUCCESS is, my message to you is to block out the naysayers and tap into what drives you, what speaks to you, what lights you up and DO IT! Especially in our VUCA world.




Author: Natalie Leach

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#FollowYourHeart #DoWhatYouLove #HRinGoodHands #CareerDevelopment #PersonalDevelopment #TruthSayer

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Natalie Leach, CHRP, is the Founder and Director of Talent at Hands on Human Resources. She has gained a comprehensive understanding of people management from 25 years of experience in various sectors both in-house and HR Consulting. She is passionate about self-improvement and empowering people and organizations to thrive. Hands-on Human Resources offers Virtual HR and Talent sourcing services to South African SMEs. Send an e-mail to to book a call.

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