What is the best-kept secret to success, especially in an actor’s life? Doing the homework! I re-learned that in an acting class I took back in 2012. Now a few years later I am practicing just that — not because I have to show up to class, but because I dealt with a painful experience three days before Thanksgiving, and it ignited a fire within me. I would not let this situation break me but instead use it to become a better person. I had two choices: death or fly. And I chose to fly. Again and again. In this situation, death to me was wallowing in self-pity and becoming a victim of circumstance. Flying meant that something indeed had to die and that was the part of me that was no longer in service to my highest good, potential, or happiness. In fact, theory had to be grounded into practice and I had to redefine who I wanted to be.
This death by fire birthed a renewing of my mind and inspired tangible action for who I had become. This is where I met my friend Discipline and its’ Siamese twin Consistency. I meditated, prayed, and wrote a blueprint for how they would team up together in my daily life. Just like the basics of a three-legged stool, I needed to build a solid and steady foundation. The third leg to make this trio complete was the commonly misunderstood yet wisest friend of all, Commitment. In a world where being flaky is pretty much the norm (especially in Los Angeles) because of an audition or a gig (aka something better) that may come up at any moment, people often leave their scheduling to chance and create a lukewarm itinerary for their day to day life. I have found that committing to something empowers me because I ask myself what is it that I want to commit to and voila! I receive direction. I have a map and somewhere I actually want to go, which can make all the difference — especially in a world full of distractions.
Yes, the route may shift and change due to detours or roadblocks. There may even be stops, or heavy rain on the way, but I am clear about my purpose and where I am heading — windshield wipers at the ready! Instead of floating aimlessly waiting for something better to come along while being knocked around by the winds of life in ambiguity, we can root ourselves with the three amigos and be grounded in creative work, which allows the seed of Clarity to bloom. How? Make a decision and stick to it! That kind of boldness will create bold results, making it easier to choose what’s next with more confidence and then re-adjust your sails, if necessary, according to the information received. Experiment, have integrity, and be gentle with yourself. If you are not sure what you want to do, let your curiosity be enough as long as it brings your head and heart into alignment.
When creating the space to hang out with Discipline, Consistency, and Commitment, the relationship with Self is strengthened because you can now show up with intention rather than insecurity or guilty feelings of being underprepared (aka the “I am not enough” syndrome.) This trio actually boosts Self-Confidence, brings in focus, and tangible results where growth can be measured. Time becomes an investment, knowing that it is not a sprint but a marathon. That helps in enjoying the process and being present. Whatever it is you want to do START NOW with all of who you are so that you can get clear results that lead to clarity for the path toward success. It doesn’t mean you have to do something drastic. You can start small, but be consistent with following through to the end. I have been rejected hundreds of times in this business and it has prepared me. I am learning through Discipline, who is such a wise teacher, what happiness really means. It means that in preparation behind closed doors we are in devotion to the creative gift that is within us all, and in exercising that gift (which is a privilege) there is joy in the process that is our teacher.
You see my friends Discipline, Consistency, and Commitment have been pouring into me through their labor of love. For many, when first developing a strong relationship with Discipline, Consistency, and Commitment, it may seem like a chore, but with time that trio becomes the foundation for wonder, even miracles, to be invited into your life. That develops a genuine feeling of being blessed through experiencing a creative life in which your hands are in the clay, co-creating. That blessed feeling overflows into love for community through gratitude and being of service. After all, you can’t be nervous when your heart’s in service.
So my question for you today is what are you committed to? Self-Compassion? Love? Being in Service? Your business? Art? Following through on your word to yourself and others? Relationship with yourself and/or others? Self-improvement? Spiritual practice? Laughter and not taking yourself too seriously? As you ponder about what you are willing to commit yourself to, I leave you with one of my favorite quotes:
“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back– Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.” -Goethe