What to Do When Your Family Doesn't Support Your Dream
When you finally have an answer to that big question - "WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO WITH YOUR LIFE?" - the natural reaction is to run to your family. How happy they'll be to know that you've figured it out. How exciting that they can now cheer you on as you pursue your dream! But then reality strikes - they don't say anything. Or worse - they start doubting you.
Today we're talking about what you can do when your family doesn't support your dream. (Hint: don't give up!)
1. FIND SUPPORT ELSEWHERE
Maybe you can find a friend who will be your cheerleader. If not, I recommend looking online. Facebook has thousands of groups that bring together professionals around the same topic, industry, and career level. You'll find others who are in your situation and those who have been there before. I can say personally, it's so nice to know you're not the only one going through this!
2. UNDERSTAND THEIR PERSPECTIVE
Most likely, your family isn't reacting this way on purpose. As humans, we're scared of the unknown. If you're the first person in your family to set this type of goal, it's probably reallllly scary for them. They want you to succeed. And when we're faced with the unknown, our sense of security is taken away. As much as you can, try to understand what their objections are and be clear about what you want from them. For me, that was making it clear I wasn't asking for money. I didn't need them to share all of the content I posted on my blog. I only wanted them to keep up with what I was doing and make a comment about it once in a while.
3. DECIDE WHAT YOU WANT TO SHARE
Now you need to protect yourself. If you share every challenge, roadblock, and question you have as you pursue your dream, you might be giving them more opportunity to doubt you. If you know you aren't going to get validation from your family, look to your peers and mentors. With this said, you should definitely keep your loved ones informed about all of your successes (i.e., you got the interview, you landed a great project, you got a promotion, etc.) A little - "yeah I told you I could do this" - never hurt anyone.
4. ACCEPT THEIR SUPPORT WHEN IT COMES AROUND
They will become supporters, I guarantee it. It's probably just going to take some time. Rather than shrugging off their support when it comes, accept it gladly. You can be let down, even pissed, but don't hold the grudge. We all need our band of supporters, and family - they're in it for the long haul.
Have you ever been SO excited about something and shared it with your family only to be let down with doubts and questions? Tell me about it in the comments section!