Hello my friends!
You work. You work a lot. You work hard. This is what it take s to get your dreams.
You are like a farmer. You are growing a crop to grow yourself, help others, and to better your community.
All of our crops are a little different. Perhaps a new technology, a new story, or maybe a new shoe that betters your posture (I don't know, lol).
Even though all our crops may be different we all put in the work. We till the soil with the practice of our craft, checking things off our list, setting up that meeting with the big client. All of this is fruitful work. You take action and things start to grow. BUT we have to come to grips with something. No matter how hard we work there is some stuff we have no control over.
When the farmer goes to sleep at night he knows that under the ground something good is happening to his crops. Under the earth, the seed they have toiled over is receiving good things from the soil.
I have a few plants in my home. I put them next to a window so they get sun and air. I water my plants because I know they need that to live. I do these things because its what I've been taught to make plants grow. Before I can see any green pop out of the ground I am really acting on faith, trust, and work. Before I can see any growth I have no idea what that seed is actually doing in the pot. I'm doing all the things I know to do and trusting that the soil will do its part.
That is what we need to learn about our work. There is so much out of our hands. No matter how many hours you put in or how hard you work you need to find peace in the soil of your work. That the things happening while you rest will bring forth fruit.
It's a lesson in letting go of control, worry, and strife.
It's not an excuse to get lazy. Far from it. It's a call to put in the work. Till your soil until your hands hurt. Then rest. Rest fully, allowing the soil to do its part. Then you can do it all again the next day. Before you know it you will be reaping your harvest.
TILL. WATER. REST. REAP.
I used to work at a coffee shop. As a barista I would see hundreds of drooping faces, hunched shoulders, and heads hung low. Looking at all these drooping faces incourged me to do something. I relised that I was not just making a cup of coffee but was being given an opportunity. So I made a conchess dessision. I was going to make sure that every person who passed by my counter either recived a smile, a compliment, or a joke. Any form of positive interaction that was more then just "here's your drink".
Do you know what happened?
Before the costomer had even taken a sip of their drink, their sad face had gone away.
Now don't get me wrong, coffee is a magical thing that brings many people joy, including myself. What I started to see is that same joy (or better) could come from inside of me and be passed onto someone ells.
It all starts with a moment of success. An opportunity knocks and you couldn't be more excited. You are ready and capable. When all of a sudden a voice in your head begins...
"Are you kidding me?"
"You can't do that!"
"That's way too much for you to handle."
"You thought you'd be good enough for them? Ha!"
"You're so dumb!"
"You're kidding yourself!"
"Just give up"
And on and on it goes...
This mental spiraling can keep you from so much greatness. It can feel like you've lost control of your own thoughts. The good news is that it's not true. You can take control of this voice and capture your thoughts back from the spiral.
When this voice pops up you have three steps to take!
1. Tell the voice to STOP!
Seriously, when that voice shows up, tell it to stop. I started saying it out loud. It causes a skip in the record and brings in a moment of silence. Now I say it in my head but it still works the same. Then when that space of quiet shows up that's when you have to pounce.
2. Replace the lie.
Know that this voice is a lier! Everything it says has no grounding in fact. So you must replace its lies with truths. You've got the voice to stop talking and now it's your turn. Say to yourself these things:
"I am awesome"
"I am worthy"
"I am enough"
"I am loved"
and any other truths (yes all of those things are true about you) you can come up with to lift yourself up.
My personal favorite is "I am an amazing creation!", feel free to use it ;-)
3. Stand in your truths
You can say words all you want but if you don't let it seep in then it won't stick. These truths about you need to grow roots. Water them and let them grow. You are enough, you are great, and you worthy of good.
Go out there. Take those chances. Capture your thoughts. Replace them with truths.
YOU CAN DO IT!
Sit in your awesome and stand in your power!
Choice is just a factor of life. We all have to make them. What should I eat? Where should I live? What job should I take? This is just how it is. When do we know what choice to make? What path are we supposed to go on? Who or what do we listen to when the choice is all to much? Well I have a #thought on that.
Let me tell you about a time when I had a choice to make: It was the spring time and I had been cast in two shows back to back, with the latter one having the possibility of going on tour. Awesome! Winning at life. THEN out of nowhere a show that I and a bunch of great friends and artist had made got picked up for a musical festival in New York. I was met with a conundrum. Stay where I was and take the four months of work weeks and the money OR take a chance on performing a show I helped create in the city I dreamed of performing in as a kid for a much shorter run?Call it smart, stooped, responsible, or foolish. I stayed with the shows that paid more and skipped out on New York for something I knew. Saying no to that chance was one of the hardest choices I have made in my career so far.
I now live in New York and have met quite a few casting directors who saw that show and would have seen some of my work already instead of being here now and trying to prove myself with only an audition.
At the time I had no idea where I would be in a year or two but I remember this. During my whole time deliberating over these two things my gut was tied up. I kept waiting for it to unwind but it never did. It was with that I knew I had made the wrong choice for myself. That feeling is what I call the G.G.G or the God Given Gut. It screams at me when I have to make a choice and if I just listen to it and not my fear I know what choice I need to make.
We have to be in tune with our bodies. In tune with our creator and the creation. You have been perfectly made and if you listen you will know what to do. Maybe you get noshes or maybe you get headaches when situations like this come up. I want to encourage you to be in tune with you and to push out that chatter box of fear. Have the courage to say yes and the discernment when to say no.
Every story has its players. The hero, the villain, the love interest, the sidekick, and so on. These roles are all essential to telling a story. These parts also appear in another important story. A story being written every day. That story? It's your life!
What role have you cast yourself in? Do you find yourself to be hanging in the background of your own life? Playing the supporting role in everyone else's story?
You have an important story to tell. Every single day you get to choose and I want you to cast yourself as the STAR! Every single day you need to find that twelve o'clock number. One thing that is all about you! Doing something to get you closer to your hopes and dreams, something that fills your cup, and something that moves you forward!
There will be times in your day where someone else gets to have the solo and that is good. You can sing some "shoops" or "doo-doos" for a song or two. Remember though, YOU get the big end of act number that moves your story into the next act.
So take center stage today! Own your moment in the spotlight. Cast yourself in the lead of your life.
Perspective; Artists are all too familiar with this word. You write a story from the perspective of another person. You paint a portrait or photograph from a certain perspective. You have to portray someone's perspective of life on a stage or screen. Through these works, we are forced to see life from many sides, angles, and points of view.
It can be so easy to get lost in your work. To put in countless hours on your creativity and immediately start comparing it or tearing it down. You look at where you are, then where you want to be, and wonder why you aren't there yet. Time to put things into perspective.
I know many people look at the stories of people who have succeeded in the field they wish to succeed in. A good tactic that can show how it can take longer than one might think. At least that's the case for most. I want to encourage you to then take that perspective into your own life. Look at where you are and where you have come from. Don't skip a single step. Look at every time you got up for that audition instead of laying in bed, every time you put pen to paper, and every time you got to that dance class you were too tired to take. Every step matters.
Look back at every single accomplishment (no matter how small) that brought you to where you are. Now, what is it you want to accomplish? What is the goal? What can you be doing more of to get to where you want to be? What can you be doing RIGHT NOW to change your tomorrow?
Let's put things into perspective. It's going to take time. It's going to take work. You have what it takes to make your dream a reality. Let's really look into our successes. Let's see where we have fallen short. Let's make changes to get to where we want to go.
In life you have many choices to make. What to have for lunch, where you go on your day off, or when you go to bed. All of these choices will have a positive or negative effect on your life. Of all the choices you make, I believe the most important of these is choosing who you spend your time with.
photo by Mattew Murphy
I'm a PDX boy living in a NYC world. I believe that simple acts of kindness can change a life and that words are the most powerful things we own. I hope to use my words to bring positivity and hope to all on their journey.