Why Ambition is One of My Favorite Words

I’ve always been a person who was comfortable with ambition. The first job I ever wanted? President of the United States. (I still think I’d be better at it than Donald Trump.)

Lately, I’ve been talking with a lot of inspirational and hard working women. As I try my best to prepare myself for the move into freelance in a few months, I’m seeking out advice from those who have gone before me.

Melanie from Dear Debt was so kind to take time from her schedule last week to speak with me, and yesterday I chatted up Erin from Journey to Savings, Kayla from Shoeaholic No More, and Chonce from My Debt Epiphany. All three badass freelance ladies, all three killing it in different ways. All three of them have also stoked the fires of my ambition.

Going freelance full time is certainly not going to be easy, and there’s a lot I still need to do. I keep envisioning days of writing on a sun-drenched kitchen chair, an Instagram-worthy cup of coffee by my side. That’s definitely not what my upcoming life is going to look like.

But I’m more than willing to work towards that, and towards a new life as a writer. When I think about my current life, I’m uninspired and resentful of the work I have to put in. When I think about freelancing, I’m excited by the challenge it presents.

Our world is undecided on the word ambition. It’s ok for a straight white man to start a tech company and shoot for the moon. It’s a little murkier out there for a woman to try something similar. We don’t provide the same resources or give the same feedback to women starting their own businesses. How will you balance family AND work, we wonder? Can you really do it all? But who will cook dinner?

It’s not a bad thing to want more out of your life. I don’t define more as a Range Rover, a six bedroom home or yacht. I define more as a fulfilling daily routine, and work that satisfies you.

Reaching for those things can be ambitious. It is for me. It’s a bit audacious for me to leave my current non-profit and strike out on my own. Some would day it’s too risky- my non profit job is stable, and has a more clear career path. It’s better on my resume. Some people would say my ambition is blinding me to the smart choice.

Maybe it is! I am ambitious. I not only want to write to pay the bills, but I want to write something beautiful and lasting. I want to write books. I want my words to affect someone. I want to contribute something meaningful to the world. I have high hopes for myself.

Ambition is not a dirty word or a bad thing to be. No need to whisper your ambitions to a trusted few, or keep them to yourself entirely. Shout it out loud from the rooftops! Let people know who you are. Let them know what you’re about. Then, be about it.

I’m standing on a rooftop right now, proclaiming to the world that I’m going for the whole writing thing. I am reaching for the days of success and stability. I’m feeding my ambition. I’m not embarrassed, I’m not keeping it hidden. I’m inspired by those who have gone before me and thankful for what they’ve done. I’m looking forward to this next step.

How do you feel about the word ambition?

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