Tom Callos sent an email today, with a link to a video by Ira Glass. I’m going to include the link, but I know most who read this won’t view the video. Actually, that was kind of the point of Tom’s email, but that is a whole other story…
Ira says a lot of important things about the creative process of making videos. What struck me though, are the parallels between making a video and life. About making a video and doing just about anything that is important. One of the points Ira made is that many people stop making videos because their product doesn’t live up to their “taste”.
Maybe, because I was taking a break from writing new copy for the website, this struck a chord. Or maybe, it was because I’ve been trying to outline a new curriculum. Or, because I’ve been struggling with making weekly journal entries. Or because I….. (Insert just about anything I do here)
I’ve always been an “outside the box” kind of person. Artistic to a degree, but not particularly talented. I like to read, and enjoy expressing myself through writing. Sometimes the ideas and creativity flow, sometimes I feel like I’m hitting my head against a wall.
I’m reminded of one of those toys that just keeps pushing forward against a wall until the batteries run down. If you turn it away from the obstacle, it will zoom off. Until it hits the next obstacle. Then it stays stationary with wheels spinning, batteries draining until empty.
I’ve got some deadlines I need to meet. My wheels have been spinning a lot lately, my batteries are getting depleted.
I have to acknowledge that my efforts are not going to always match my vision. That is ok. But if I don’t continue the effort, I’m never going to get better.
To be honest, it’s really easier to quit. I could just be content to settle. To be content with the status quo. The copy for the website is good enough. My last journal entry was good enough. The curriculum we have is good enough.
The work I am doing for the Ultimate Black Belt Test is good enough. My training and physical conditioning are good enough. My relationships are good enough.
Right now, my finished product doesn’t look anything like my vision.
Of course, it’s easier to just quit.
I can listen to the little guy that lives on my shoulder (he’s invisible you know but I think you probably have one too) that tells I’m too busy or too tired or not smart enough or not strong enough or not talented enough or just not good enough to do what I’ve set out to do.
Or, I can dig deep. I can look back at what I have done, see the good in it, and use that as a foundation for the next step. I can listen to the gal that lives on the other shoulder (yep, she’s invisible too) that tells me that I can do it. She reminds me that I am a black belt, a teacher, a leader, a mom, a friend, a citizen of this planet and I have ability to do whatever I set my mind to. Her voice is much softer than the guy that lives on my other shoulder and sometimes I have to really strain to hear her.
I also have to recharge my batteries. I do that when I sit on my deck and meditate while listening to the birds sing. I do that when I read an email from a friend that tells me I have helped him or her during some difficult times. Tom Callos recharges my batteries with his emails and videos, as do my UBBT teammates with their journals and their work. I need to spend more time recharging.
Recharge. Think. Visualize. Get to work.
This video of my life. It is a work in progress and I’ve got the camera running every moment that I’m awake. It can have real depth and meaning, perhaps even move and inspire, or it can be a lot of blank screen and white noise.