We are Off The Rails and this is why we exist.
The name for this platform came from a random conversation during which Shannon was full of energy and going a mile a minute. After apologizing to Kali for being “off the rails,” a friend laughed and said, “That’s your name!”
The phrase “off the rails” usually refers to something that’s gone a bit off track. It could be someone gone round the bend or simply someone with more energy than is appropriate at the moment. But in this case, the term seemed perfect for what we were trying to do:
Create a platform to help people live the lives they want, no matter how difficult or nontraditional the path.
Most of us tend to follow a strict path in life. We go to school, major in something practical, get a job, get married, buy a house, start a family, and so on. And, for most of us, nothing could be more fulfilling than that: a slice of the American dream.
But if you’re a creative, then it can be quite difficult to live that life. Creativity is impractical, yeah?
Creativity doesn’t guarantee a job or income. It won’t help you obtain a mortgage. Creativity may even require you to move away from your hometown, your family, your understanding of normal and what you’ve always known.
But you answer the call of your creativity anyway, because you love the pursuit of your craft.
We follow our creativity off the usual paths because there’s simply no other way for us to live.
To ignore our craft is to turn our backs on who we are. But to follow our craft is to live a life that goes way off the typical track. It is, truly, a life off the rails.
At Off The Rails, we believe a life lived intentionally is better than a life lived comfortably. We believe that it’s crucial to follow a path that’s true to ourselves. But don’t mistake us: we don’t believe in blindly chasing passion. Rather, we believe in thoughtfully carving out lives that will honor who we are and what we want to contribute to the world.A life lived intentionally is better than a life lived comfortably. Ready to follow your #creativity? Click To Tweet
That’s what we believe and this is what we are. Off The Rails is a free mentorship platform for creative women. Our mission: help women recognize and fulfill their callings. OTR achieves this by offering mentorship, resources, and community.
We provide all the support you need when you make the decision to reject the prescribed path and live your life off the rails.
Creative, determined women who want to carve nontraditional paths through this world deserve access to a mentor that can help them live that better life. But it’s not easy to locate a mentor, especially when you’re not on a track that traditionally offers such relationships. And even when you do find someone you want as a mentor, it’s tough to naturally cultivate that connection.
And that’s why we focus on mentorship. We are not life coaches. We are not self-help gurus. We are not here to tell you to go Eat, Pray, Love your quarter-life crisis away.
Off The Rails exists to provide you with a mentor who can provide guidance, who can be engaged with you, who listens to and encourages you to seek out your best life and self.
We believe in living by a give-first philosophy, which is why mentoring sessions are free for mentees. We believe that women can change lives by turning around once they’ve reached the top, and reaching out a hand to pull another woman up to the top with her. We believe in collaboration, not competition.
We believe in breaking from prescribed paths and helping you understand what a fulfilling life looks like. We believe in showing up and doing the work required to live a creative life — whatever that means to you.
And above all else, Off The Rails believes in each of us doing our best to use our gifts and talents to help someone else live a better life.
If you’re a creative, you already know what your passion is: it’s everything! A creative life is one lived in constant pursuit of exploration and curiosity. But your craft, that’s your lifeblood. Your craft is the thing you can’t ignore, the thing you should spend your life developing, growing, and sharing with the world.
Off The Rails believes in honoring your craft and creating a life that supports it. That could mean finding traditional or untraditional ways to get paid for your craft – or it could mean simply creating room for your craft in your life and unabashedly protecting that space. The answer is different for everyone. But hey, isn’t that what being off the rails is all about?
Shannon and Kali