Making the decision to leave your survival job and prioritize your film career can be stressful. There’s probably a lot of unknowns there, and that uncertainty can be paralyzing.

There are two things that can settle your mind in making this transition: developing a mental image of who and where you want to be in life, and having a plan in how to get there. If you knew a path into the film industry, would you take the leap?

This industry is filled with vibrant people doing exciting work that pays really, really well. I can guarantee you that this life is worth the struggle in the beginning. Breaking away from a 9-5, a corporate job, a bad situation in your life, whatever it is, is worth it.

You don’t want to wake up in 10 years doing something that doesn’t make you feel good about life. When I was selling copy machines I was not happy, and I decided that I didn’t want to be complacent. Making the choice, taking the risk to leave a stable corporate job was a little scary, but it was also really exciting. The minute I broke into the film world, I knew I made the right call, and I’ve never regretted it. The money is great, the people are fantastic, and the opportunities to travel and see amazing things are unmatched. It starts with getting on set.

You’ll get on any set you can, however you can, and work on making connections that move you up into paid assistant work in the department you want to be in. Once there it’s just a matter of vectoring up onto bigger and bigger projects.

That’s how I did it, and that’s how you’ll do it too.