a few steps to finding out your passion in life...

Who should be reading this?

This post is for you if you are looking to find what next steps to take towards finding out what you're passionate about. You have to be willing to self-reflect, and take action by narrowing down a path to follow. Once you know which direction to take, then you can hone your skill sets through education and create a career out of it!

My name is Kelli Shawn, and I come from a perspective of intense drive and growth in everything I do (without losing the quality of life I want to live). I have chosen a passionate career as a freelance hair + makeup artist. I have had the opportunity to work on campaigns for Nike Women and Nike Los Angeles, and have been published in Vogue Italia, Beauty Launchpad, and more.

As a child, my parents were adamant about me being a well-rounded student. I was introduced to piano, voice, art and dance lessons; was encouraged to read many books, was expected to get good grades, and later was involved in choir and theater.

So, with all these skill sets at my fingertips, why did I choose to study hair + makeup?

I never gave much thought to why I assumed I would be in the beauty industry, behind the scenes. I look back at photographs and realize it was not my "skill set" that made me accept my future. At 14 years old, my freehand lines were crooked, my colors were too muted, I knew nothing of color theory, lighting, or photography. My makeup was purchased from the drugstore, and I had one small set of brushes. As a high school student, my "photoshoots" consisted of friends and family as models. But at 19 years old, I took the leap and enrolled in cosmetology school + makeup school. After I received my license, I decided to quit college and immediately started inquiring for an assistant position at salons. During the following years, I took weekly courses wherever I could find them; I was compelled to continue my education.

I had the confidence to choose this path because

someone believed in me.

I was encouraged to try.

I was expected to excel.

But now that I am a professional makeup artist + hairstylist, why do I still choose this career?

After pondering this question for about a year, I finally figured it out. I believe that 10+ years of music, dance + theater taught me the love of fine arts. I am moved by thoughtful composition and awed by technical skill. This combination formed a passion for creating beautiful visuals, using the medium of makeup.

So, this leads me to my main point: are you struggling with finding your passion in life?

I'd like to help you find what your passions are, so that you can use those ideas to narrow down what career paths would be best benefited by your efforts! Grab a pencil + paper and start writing down the things that pertain to you!

1) Find someone who believes in you.

  • A significant other, a parent, a friend, a mentor.
  • Surround yourself with encouraging people.
  • Spend time regularly in positive environments

2) Find what moves you. This helps narrow down your choices. And, just maybe, it's multiple things - and that's okay! For example...

  • artistic
  • technical
  • working with people
  • competitive
  • athletic
  • political issues
  • logical
  • perspective
  • stability

3) List your skill(s).  If you're stuck, try asking a few people.

  • Writing
  • Speaking/Translating
  • Reasoning
  • Listening
  • Helping
  • Physical Strength
  • Reading
  • Mathematics
  • Creativity
  • Directing
  • Planning/Coordinating
  • Coaching/Teaching
  • Performing

4) Take a chance. Try something. Learn what you DON'T want to do, in order to find what you DO love.

  • Enroll in a class
  • Make a dream board
  • Set small, attainable goals

Just start with these small moves, and see where it takes you! Don't be afraid to try a few times - life is about LIVING. Let me know if you need more explanation for any of these steps (i.e., "what's a dream board?"), or if you'd like me to touch on any specific topic! Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts + opinions - stay tuned - I'll be posting again in a few weeks!