Monday, October 11, 2010

Good to be Scared!


So, in this funk that I'm in, I got in a conversation with an old friend.  (Soooo helpful to have people in my life who have known me since before I got all angsty and confused.)  Mike's been fam since grade school.  and we've stayed constant through continental moves, family crises, colossal failure and modest success.  I love that and I love him for remaining grounded and honest.
Anyway, I was doing my woe-is-me spiel, when he cut me short and asked me why I chose acting.  I gave my usual response about escaping myself, but he pressed me.  Had I just picked something that sounded good, or was I looking for personal growth?  Why?  Then he told me about a seasoned jazz singer who'd told him that she's still unsure everyday what she wants to do or who to be.  She doesn't perform out of love.  She literally performs to scare herself - to push herself passed her own boundary.  In that way, performing becomes an activity that truly serves her.  That got to me.  And the Mike challenged me to try that: Take one project at a time - one day at a time - without commitment to anything more than learning something about yourself; to simply choose to scare myself for the edification, and then decide whether to try again the next day or not.
That's radical thinking for me.  I assumed I had to love this.  It's a whole different ball game to think it's ok, and even good, for it to scare me!  So tomorrow, I'm scaring myself by pushing past anything I've done before - and I won't look any further into the future than that.  Oh, boy.

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