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Dealing with being told to “get a real job”

“Get a real job!” This is something that many of us have heard, in so many words,  from time to time as creators and streamers. This might come from any number of people, such as trolls online, family, friends or even ourselves sometimes. Many of us use this outlet as a fun, creative way to blow off steam. Others utilize this craft for the bulk of their income. We are all different! The truth is, being a creator, although whimsical and freeing, IS a real job! Doing what we do takes a lot of hard work, time, effort, and more. This can be very difficult to understand for someone who has never had the freedom to do something they actually love or has never worked for themselves. This isn’t to say that everyone else will understand either ( which is a great reason to make some creator friends who understand the hustle!) I’ve heard many horror stories of models and creators being dragged through the mud by someone they care about simply because they don’t understand just how lucrative and, dare I say, professional this industry is. This can be very discouraging to someone, no matter how long they have been in the business. 


Discipline. A scary word for many. So many people who work a “normal” 9-5 lack the discipline needed to be in this industry. This is a huge advantage for us. It creates drive, teaches you time management, and makes you take accountability for what you need to get done without a boss lurking around making sure you get your work done. It’s work! Even if you don’t have a set schedule for the week, you still sign on, reach that goal, and put in so much effort. You plan contests, prepare events, answer messages and more. Some of us truly work from the time we wake up until we go to sleep. Why do we do this? Because we care about what we do! This is a job we have chosen and made our own. We do what it takes every single day to meet our goals, and that takes more discipline than most people will ever know. It’s work!


Strength. The sheer amount of mental (and many times also physical) strength it takes to do this kind of work is incredible. Thinking on the fly, creating new and exciting things, making it through tough times and so on. We have no lack of strength in this business. You push yourself to keep going and to reach your goals. You stand up for yourself, say what you mean and mean what you say! Likewise, you make things happen for yourself by putting in the extra time and work needed, all on your own. What other profession has the freedom for you to be unapologetically yourself 24/7 and still get your work done? You get the work done because you are passionate about it, but it still is work! It takes more effort than most know to power through and perform no matter what you have going on otherwise. To turn that camera on to stream only to have a group of trolls come in to try to derail you (don’t let this happen!). The strength to try something new, the ability to troubleshoot your equipment on the fly, to do your marketing even though you just want to chill on the couch. It’s a lot of dedicated time, effort and work.


The most honest truth is that when you are a creator, you are an all-in-one force of nature. You are all the department heads in one delightful package. You don’t have an IT guy to ensure your setup works. You don’t have a marketing professional to promote your products, and you don’t have an executive assistant to take messages and deal with all the extras that come along. It’s you. YOU are the one doing all the work. You have to know all the ins and outs, all the procedures and everything that makes this world go round. You have to have the balance, know-how and sheer energy to make this work; that takes nothing short of guts. It is far more than the art you make, NSFW or otherwise.


Anyone who thinks what you do is anything less than a real job doesn’t understand or doesn’t want to understand. If the latter, then that is their prerogative, don’t stress yourself over someone who isn’t willing to, at the very least, accept the fact that there are two sides. You are the product, the production, the distribution, the financial and the operations department. It’s not easy to run this kind of business, but what you are doing is not only spectacular but is, in fact, a real job! If this job continues to provide you with what you need and brings you happiness, who’s going to tell you that it isn’t a real job? Live your life, do your work and stay true to yourself! 


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