I believe the single most significant decision I can make on a day-to-day basis is my choice of attitude. It is more important than my past, my education, my bankroll, my successes or failures, fame or pain, what other people think of me or say about me, my circumstances, or my position. My attitude keeps me going or cripples my progress. It alone fuels my fire or assaults my hope. When my attitudes are right, there is no barrier too high, no valley too deep, no dream too extreme, no challenge too great for me.
The first step in building a solid, dependable attitude is to be REALISTIC, not only about our inherent capabilities, but also about how well we are playing to those capabilities on any given day. People do not seem to realize that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character. Maybe it is my undoing that I live the “middle class morality” where I have to live for others and not for myself; where by if you have only one smile in you, give it to the people around you. Don’t be surly at home, then go out in the street and start grinning at total strangers, that’s why I will continue to have my opinion, you might not like it, you might not know, you might not care, and it might not make any difference… in the end however, it will make you MAD. That alone will be an achievement!
You will find that the truth is often unpopular and the contest between agreeable fancy and disagreeable fact is unequal. For, in the vernacular, we are suckers for good news. Anytime I am looking to somebody else as my source, I’m coming from scarcity. I am no longer trusting God, or the Universe, for my harvest. It’s reasonable for me to have expectations based on what somebody I trust has committed to. And it’s natural for me to feel disappointed when that somebody doesn’t come through. But when I feel more than disappointment, when I also feel anger, it’s because I deviated from my truth. It’s because I compromised my truth to get what somebody else promised. Because when I’m really following my truth, I will be at peace with the consequences whatever they are. I can accept somebody else’s truth, but I must live my own truth. Truth will always be truth, regardless of lack of understanding, disbelief or ignorance, the faster the truth is revealed, the faster our industry will know that the past has been a rough patch that has seen much more than exploitation and bloodsucking.
I believe I have endured enough of the ills in the industry. Something that irritates you and won’t let you go. That’s the anguish of it. When you have to do something, sweat yourself off, then follow up the reward that turns out to be a wild goose chase. We got to live with it, the attitude put by producers, ” I’m doing you a favor by having you on my project, do this my way, take my offer or die waiting for a better paying one”. You have to go through that. Talent is insignificant. I know a lot of talented ruins. Beyond talent lie all the usual words: discipline, love, luck, but, most of all, endurance. In short, I know quite certainly that I myself have no special talent; curiosity, obsession and dogged endurance, combined with self-criticism have brought me to being me… CONTROVERSIAL!
As Francis Bcon said “It’s not what we eat but what we digest that makes us strong; not what we gain but what we save that makes us rich; not what we read but what we remember that makes us learned; and not what we profess but what we practice that gives us integrity.” I will end this debate on my attitude, commonly seen as negativity by saying the one truth that most artists live with but shy from, that some of us are timid. We think we have something to lose so we don’t try to voice our injustices out, for that reason, we keep boot liking, begging and bending too low for producers and the reward we get is the same old, low pay… door mat treatment and yes… SILENCE! I seeked out that particular mental attribute which makes me feel most deeply and vitally alive, along with it comes the inner voice which says, “This is the real me” and when I found that attitude… I followed it. It might not be the best, but…I insist, I can be changed by what you think about me, but I refuse to be reduced to a spectator by it for what separates the winners from the losers is how a person reacts to each new twist of fate.
THIS IS NOT AN ADMISSION OF GUILT!