‘The doors will open to those who are bold enough to knock’
– F.Scott Fitzgerald
Sometimes it’s the most simple of phrases that can have the most profound meaning isn’t it? I have this quote on my website and it serves to remind me that everything is possible and that I am in charge of my own destiny.
In order to understand why this quote is so apt for me…we have to get a bit personal…
I trained as an actor all those years ago but after a very difficult childhood living with an alcoholic mother and a split family… Depression and social anxiety hit me hard. When I came out of university I was in no fit state to put myself in situations where I would face rejection after rejection in auditions and castings. When my mother died in 1999 I simply retreated from acting all together and somehow ended up as a customer service manager for a Telecoms company. (For whom I now provide IVR for their customers!)
Friends and family would often ask me, I didn’t go back to acting if that’s really what I wanted to do?
The only answer was ‘I was scared of failing’
What if I actually wasn’t any good? We had a mortgage to pay… I needed to bring in a wage.
I wasn’t bold enough to knock on any doors.
Then something changed. Yup…I got selfish and put myself right at the top of my priority list. And I did not feel guilty about it. I couldn’t spend the rest of my life feeling depressed and full of regret about not making a career I was passionate about. I gave myself permission and instead of discussing possible career options with others, I told everyone what I was doing. I’d made up my mind. Voiceover fitted perfectly into my life. It involved acting, creating, being a part of an industry I found exciting. I could work from home, do the kids clubs, and get my dog! So I started Gabrielle Voices very strategically, I didn’t float off randomly to be ‘An Artist’. If this was going to work I had to do it properly, get training and go for it.
The most crucial thing I’ve done is straighten my back and knock on those doors, because you know what? I can do this. Some might even say that I’m good at it. The doors have flown open for me, some have closed too, but they obviously weren’t the right doors. Positivity is a magnet for miracles. (I made that up…but you know what I mean)
I’m still at the beginning of this career journey of course, but it feels like home and the therapy, the mindfulness, the selfishness, the releasing of fear and…turning forty…has been absolutely liberating for me. Being a part of the Voice Over community is wonderful and I stop myself from saying ‘I should have done this years ago,’ because then I wouldn’t be me would I?
Of course you could just say ‘you don’t ask, you don’t get’…either way…
‘The doors will open to those who are bold enough to knock’ – F.Scott Fitzgerald
Gabrielle Baker is a rising star on the British Voice over scene. Her warm and buttery voice is proving a hit in the states where she is the chosen narrator for award winning authors and those who want a luxuriant British voice. As well as finding a niche in audiobook narration, Gabrielle provides corporate voice over for a wide range of clients from high end watch retailers, the NHS and the Automotive sector.