My Journey As A Ghost Hunter
Well…actually err, I’m not a ghost hunter, I moonlight in another profession. But because this article is for members of the Alpha Nerds Guild, I tweaked it to steer myself out of the limelight. The topic itself is what should be in the spotlight. Being a hunter of our ethereal friends requires a thick skin, not only from possible scathing reviews online but from people in your life. However, hand in hand with that comes a veritable army of people who believe in you, support your work and want to see you succeed.
To catch a good spirit, the first important ingredient is self-belief. Believe in your ability to set the trap and reap the rewards. No one else will believe in you (especially at the very beginning) unless you’re extremely lucky. So the first step before anything else is self-belief. Some say not to worry about it, that it will come later. True, it might, but if you don’t have that solid base of believing in what you can do and how you’re going to do it, it will be much easier for your critics and doubters to sway your opinion of your own ability. And believe me, you will have critics, and not because you aren’t skilled, but because they are projecting their own failing/s and shortcomings onto you. Unfortunately, these critics will also be arrayed amongst groups of people you’d think would be by your side by default. Sad but true.
Find Your Supporters
Probably the only person in my entire life who believed in me from the word go is my wife Simone. She’s been my rock (and always will be). If you’re not sure if a family member or very close friend is a supporter, it’s pretty easy to find out. Next time you’re chatting with them on the phone, e-mail or messenger, simply neglect to mention anything to do with your ghost hunting (or whatever your passion may be) and see if they mention it even one time. If they don’t mention it, even in passing and unless they have Alzheimer’s Disease, you can bet your bottom dollar that they aren’t a supporter.
Keep Them Close
Pick your supporters, steel yourself and surround yourself with the people who are going to help you punch through some of the walls standing in your way. There will come times when you’ll need their help to stay focused. Leave the doubters by the wayside, they will play no part in your journey, in fact, they may even try to hinder it. If you’re in the unfortunate case of having family members doubting you, then if you can’t leave them by the wayside, at least keep them at arm’s length. Want to take it seriously? Yes? Then the toxicity of people who doubt you should play no part in your life or your journey towards your goal. Keep negativity out, because if you don’t, eventually, it will wear you down and you’ll probably fail.
“See, I told you so!” will be the catch-cry of the doubters.
Being aware of the people standing shoulder to shoulder with you and facing the challenges in your path is just as important as the energy you’ll put into your endeavour itself (whether it be ghost hunting, singing, gardening, playing computer games, badminton or painting). Both go hand in hand.
I was sat down by someone very close to me at one point and told there was no future in ghost hunting. That I could never make a career out of it and I should give up. This lecture took place in front of my girlfriend (now wife) and was embarrassing and humiliating, to say the least. However, it also gave me a gritty determination to continue with my profession.
Another bloke I know asked me what formal qualifications I have to be a ghost hunter. Halfway through the first sentence of my reply, he talked over the top of me and explained how his daughter recently completed a formal certificate in catching ghosts and won an award at TAFE (a tertiary school if you’re not sure what that is). Good for her, that is a massive achievement. Although, I also note neither he nor his daughter has caught any of our ethereal friends, certainly not in the public domain, anyway. More than likely, they never will.
The Believers And Inspirers
More than likely, these spiteful people (like those I mentioned earlier) will be hugely outnumbered by those who genuinely care about your work and want to support you in your journey. There is a bloke I work with who asks, “where’s my new ghost, McArdle?” – every time he sees me. When I finally caught one in an old abandoned nursing home, his eyes lit up like those of a child.
Others help me to remain focused, even if it’s just a one or two sentence e-mail reiterating they like what I do. It’s those tiny reminders that keep me strong. There are genuinely good and caring people out there in the world. Find them and stick by them, because believe me, they’ll stick by you as well.
How A Hollywood Mega Star Can Inspire
One of the stories that inspire me most, is the Rocky movies and the story of Sylvester Stallone himself. A man whom came from nothing and broke his way onto the big time, simply by believing in himself, his ability and never taking no for an answer. If you’re unfamiliar with Stallone’s journey into the movie industry, look it up. It’s incredible.
One of the most inspirational scenes in those movies is when Rocky is talking to his son:
“Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows, it’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit, it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward! That’s how winnin’ is done!”
Did you notice the language he used there? He said that life will beat you to your knees and keep you there if you let it. You have a choice. You have a say so as to whether you remain on your knees or not. So when you’ve copped a few punches and body blows, that’s when your steely self-belief and those of your supporters come in. Pick your ass up, dust yourself off and push forward. When you’re on your feet again, bloody and bruised, sweat trickling down your forehead to sting your eyes, ask life, “is that all you got?”
You Are The Doer Of Deeds
You’ve got this! You can do it, and more than that, you are doing it.
If you notice, almost all of this article is encompassing the topic of self-belief. That is how hugely important it is not only at the very beginning, but all the way through. If you don’t believe you can do it, then no one else will either. Whatever your goal is, whatever it is you want to push towards, you must believe in yourself, who you are and for that which you stand.
So no matter what your passion is, or your long-term goal/s, start striding towards it. Keep your supporters close and leave the doubters behind. And dream big!
Remember the motto of the 22nd Infantry Regiment (Light Infantry), burn them into your mind:
“Deeds, Not Words.”
Now get your ass moving!
Need Some More Inspiration?
If you’re searching for something else to get your inspiration on, this clip always works for me. At the end of the day, it might be an advert for Nike, but the intention itself is incredibly uplifting. What’s the main focus you may ask? The same one this article is based around. You can do this. You can do this. Now start work: