What FX’s Atlanta Taught Me About Dream Chasing

In honor of Donald Glover (he’s forever Childish Gambino to me though) being up for not one but two Golden Globe nominations tonight–Best Musical or Comedy TV Series and Best Actor in Musical or Comedy TV Series– I figured I’d share what his hit FX series, Atlanta, taught me about dream chasing.

ATLANTA -- Pictured: (l-r) Brian Tyree Henry as Alfred Miles, Keith Standfield as Darius, Donald Glover as Earnest Marks. CR: Matthias Clamer/FX
ATLANTA — Pictured: (l-r) Brian Tyree Henry as Alfred Miles, Keith Standfield as Darius, Donald Glover as Earnest Marks. CR: Matthias Clamer/FX

Not Everyone Will Believe In Your Dream

In the first episode of Atlanta, we find Earn working a dead-end job while trying to successfully co-parent his daughter with Van. He finds himself wanting to manage his cousin, an upcoming rapper named Paperboi. His parents, Van and even Paperboi did not believe in his dream of the music industry. He didn’t get deterred and went at it full force proving everyone wrong.

If someone doesn’t believe in your dream, they just don’t believe. It doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t believe. You should never let someone else stop you from living your life. You’ll have regrets while they’re living life like they want to. Your dream is just that–your dream. Not theirs. Your dream was given to you because only you can fulfill it. It was tailor-made for you, not anyone else. Do not waste your energy trying to convince someone else that your dream is worth believing in–that energy can be better spent making sure your shoes are tied for the dream chasing you have got going on.

Fake It Til You Make It!

Just like when Earn found himself mistaken for another music industry agent and allowed inside of a networking event, fake it til you make it! If you have the right amount of confidence and belief in yourself, you can get anything accomplished. Quick story: I once got backstage to meet Lupe Fiasco and Dr. Cornel West just because it looked like I belonged there.

It might take a while to get to your dream, but if you go at with tenacity and like it’s already yours, you’ll easily get it accomplished. Though it might feel a little artificial, faking it til you make it actually pushes you to learn more and go full force at your dream because you’ve sold it as if you’ve already made it. Want a dream job but don’t feel you’re equipped because you don’t know about one program? YouTube and Google your life on it! Research classes in your area to become more knowledgeable on the subject. Resource: coursera.org – they offers courses and specialization programs from top universities (University of Michigan, John Hopkins University, Duke University, just to name a few) on subjects ranging from Social Media to Data Science, some that you’re able to participate in for free.

Don’t Be Afraid to Struggle

In the last few minutes of the season finale we finally know why Earn was looking for his jacket so HEAVILY (from strip clubs to checking a dead body O_o) As it turns out, Earn thought he left a key in his jacket pocket, which his friend ends up having. We come to find out that key is to a storage unit Earn has decided to live out of. He could have taken the easy road and stayed with Van who extended an invite out to him to stay or he could have stayed with Paperboi and Darius. Instead, he rented a storage unit to live out of, which was both disheartening and inspiring to watch. It showed tremendous growth in his character.

Do not be afraid to take the hard road! Chase your dreams non-stop, no matter the circumstances they might put you in. A couple years ago I tuned into a videocast and one of the things that stuck out to me was what one of the guest speakers said, “Give yourself permission to dream..it’s amazing how many nightmares chasing a dream includes.” Which basically means, it won’t be all pretty clouds during your dream chasing. Stormy weather will come, you just have to stick with it. Don’t let the struggle stop you from taking the journey.

4 thoughts on “What FX’s Atlanta Taught Me About Dream Chasing

  1. Yasss front! “Toast” to having dreams and faking it till you make it! I haven’t watched all the episodes yet but, now I’m going because of your words! I love you, Shay- your back! <3

    1. Thanks, Shay! Love you! It’s a really good series. It won’t be returning until 2018 so you have a plenty time to catch up.

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