I’ve been searching for and, happily, finding great resources for creatives looking for their next step. There are so many interesting articles and points of view! But at this point it feels a little like my head is a very vast space (I’m stuck on the image of a train station…Union Station in DC, or perhaps Philly’s 30th Street Station…something with lots of marble), filled with many people…there are fragments of ideas bouncing off of the walls, careening into other thoughts, dashing some into pieces and integrating others into a larger, more complex idea. It’s part rock concert, part flea market, part art exhibition, part carnival.
Here are some contributors to my mental cacophony:
These folks are smart and courageous. They write like they’re speaking to a friend. Some of it’s inspiration…some is tough love…and some are case studies, examples of how others have opted into or out of places and spaces.I have to say that there’s never been a better time to rethink yourself, your path. These are brave, eloquent people who have found unconventional success…and moreover, have defined that loaded word “success” in their own way. I like to think of having one of them on my shoulder, to provide perspective when my inner demons are telling me that I’m not good/smart/kind/industrious enough to amount to much.
But the first thing that I’m seeing in all of these folk’s philosophies? Is that they daydream. They practice cultivating those crazy, out-of-the-box thoughts…much like we practiced auditioning. Daily. Specifically. Focused. They allow themselves to daydream, without a censor telling them that they can’t, shouldn’t, will-never-be-able-to.
They’ve allowed themselves to think about those things that they want…without putting the onus of merit on their dreams. Let’s remove from the equation for just a moment whether you feel you deserve something, or all of the things, or nothing at all. And let’s just go with the thought that someone thinks that you deserve to dream.
(Heck, I think you deserve to dream! Add one person to your mental cheerleader list.)
Now, from that empty place? Dream.
What do you want? How do you want to feel? No judgements. Nothing is too vast or too shallow – it’s dreaming.
I want the metabolism of a 20-year-old; I also want the wisdom and smarts of someone older and wiser and smarter than I. I want respect. I want inner peace. I want to be able to hold my liquor. I want people to love being around me. I want to be on Oprah someday. I want to write a book. I want children. I want to give my friends and family stories and songs to remember me by. I want to stand up for myself more often. I want a big-girl purse. I want to be able to shave my knees and ankles without bloodying them. I want to write letters in longhand. I want to be more creative.
(There’s my top-of-my-head, all of the things I can type in two minutes, daydream list. I could go on. I bet you could too.)
My challenge to you is to take 5 minutes, create a google doc or grab a notebook or send yourself a voicemail. And daydream about the things you want. Do it every day for 7 days. Think of it as getting yourself into the practice room…for your next chapter.
Let’s check back in here next week and see what we come up with…shall we?