Musician and educator Megan Eda Hollweck grapples with Impostor syndrome as she pursues her calling to teach and make an impact on her students.
Describe your new project/venture
In January of 2019, I decided to launch a full-time fine arts school. In just 10 months, the school has grown to have more than 30 students, along with two teachers who teach piano, voice, guitar, and ukulele. We’ve done toddler classes and workshops along with language arts tutoring as well.
Why did you decide to launch the school?
I don’t like to use the phrase “it’s my calling”, but that’s really how I felt when I made the decision. I needed to be fulfilled with my work, and it sort of hit me one day late last year when I was working in the corporate world.
What was the pre-launch process like for you?
It was this quiet epiphany that I had when I realized that my finance career wasn’t very fulfilling. I knew in that moment that I was the only one who could change that. So I quit my 9-5 job, got sober, and said, “Hey - crazy idea - but I think I should go all in and start a full-time career in music.” Up to that point, I’d had this sort of looming career existentialism because I hadn’t really figured out what I really wanted to do yet career-wise. Once I made the decision to pursue my passion that feeling faded pretty quickly.
What scares you about this project/process?
This idea of Imposter syndrome can be a little nagging at times. The self talk of “am I really good enough/qualified enough to be doing this?” along with “will this actually be successful, or am I just crazy?” Also, the varying income was a little scary at first, because I never know if new students were going to still be with me 6 months later, or if enrollment would come to a standstill or even fall short. At the beginning, I didn’t know if there would even be a market for music lessons, so that was also a big gamble for me too.
What motivates you to keep going with it?
100% the kids. They show me every day how much of a difference I’m making in their lives.
What does success look like to you?
When my students or their parents know that they can come to me about anything, then I know that the time I’ve put into building those relationships and that trust has paid off. When these kids realize that someone always believed in them and supported them, then I’ll know that what I’m doing is successful.
If you could go back in time the beginning of this process and tell yourself something, a word or two of advice, what would it be?
“Keep fucking going”. Seriously. I say that to myself on both good and bad days, because I’ve got to be my own cheerleader. It really sucks to keep going on days where it’s hard to channel my passion and I’m feeling burnt out, but if I tell myself to just “keep fucking going” it’s worth it at the end of the day.
Visit Bright Star School of Fine Arts at www.brightstarfinearts.com
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