F*** You (An Artist's Motto to live by)
Too much these days we focus upon success. Success in the eyes of others that is. How much money you make. A Title. An expensive car or house.
While these things all have their place there is another kind of success we should be putting more in the front ground and that is personal success. That feeling of satisfaction when you complete a project that you are passionate about or the feeling of pride when you achieve something that you have been strongly desiring. This is the kind of success we should be trying for. It is unique and something that no 2 people will ever experience the same way.
I recently read an article about how college students are choosing their majors more and more on the perceive employment opportunities along with which generate higher income. It stated that in with the job market the way it is this is not entirely a smart idea. Majors that many assume hold many position opportunities right after graduation have higher unemployment rates than many other areas. Even those that have a lower rate of unemployment pay so minimally and limit advancement opportunities that choosing a major based solely on these ideas is impractical. Which leads me back to my previous point.
Personal Success means living your life the way you want to live it. To live a happy life. To live a fulfilling life. Now everyone has a different view on what this means but personally to me part of it means working a job that I am passionate about. Working somewhere that I am excited to go to work as opposed to dreading that alarm telling me it's time to go.
And that starts with studying what you enjoy. Never let those around you choose your major. I will admit when I told my mom and the rest of my family that I was double majoring in Creative Writing/English and Acting/Theatre, I got plenty of "advice" on what majors I should consider switching too, but I held my ground cause I knew that in the end all that mattered is that I was happy. When it comes down to it, the only person I ever really have to answer to is myself, and that is one person you never want to give the wrong answer too.
Whether you believe it or not with determination and drive you can make a living in what ever it is that you love. It's not always easy. You will probably have to do a lot more work than others do to make it happen and to figure out a way, but there is always a way if you try hard enough. Don't let the rough road keep you from doing what you are meant to do.
You don't want to wake up 10 plus years from now in a job you hate that makes you suicidal at times, just because you didn't try at what you really wanted.
Achieve your personal success, I am sure that there is no better feeling in the world.
The phrase F*** You is one that can be very offensive. It is one that personally i feel wrong and often uncomfortable saying but it is a phrase that those of the creative mindset and even those that are not should live by even if it is never vocalized. It is an attitude that everybody should have even if only in their back pocket.
I must admit the use of this phrase in my life especially in terms towards my artistic life is one that was started by an acting teacher I had long ago, and one I was recently reminded of by one of my new College Professors (new to me, the professor is quite old).
My acting teacher was not one to be profane. He was not vulgar or at all uncivilized and ignorant, but he greatly understood how much the effects of how we are perceived by others affect or actions and lack of actions. Social conformity and the influence of our peers is very high especially during our schooling years. While this is fine for many, for the young artist, and even older artists it can be a death sentence. Making art, performing, writing, requires you to put yourself out in front of many people, many different people with different views. And even worse (for most) it is doing so in a way that makes you very vulnerable.
Now my teacher didn't start by giving us these profane words, but with explaining that no matter what you will never be able to please everyone. In the end all that really matters is that you please yourself. You're own satisfaction and happiness is key, and regardless to what some may believe that is not selfish or prideful, but a simple fact that if understood, can lead to a much better enjoyable life.
My teacher noticed that we were often holding back. Not giving into the scene, the action of the scene or the life on stage. It was at this point that he gave us key advice. He told us before stepping a single foot on stage repeat the phrase "F*** You" over and over until you feel it, until you don't care what the audience is going to think or what anyone else will think of your behavior and actions to follow. This was the best advice any of us had ever gotten and it was obvious watching my fellow actors and classmates who had taken the advice, they were the ones to succeed.
As actors, and other artists, our job is often to show, depict, or express ideas that may not be the social norm, are very deep, personal, explicit, dark, controversial, but that are over all real. Things that people are often not able to deal with or understand in any other way than to turn to art. Actors live on stage, experience things on stage so that the audience don't ever have to. Artist are just as human as their audiences the only difference is their attitude of "F*** You"
As for my Professor, he pointed out the only way art in all forms evolved throughout the world was through Rebels, People who said "F*** You" to the social norms and and the "rules" surrounding art at the time. If people did not fight the way things were than culture and life as we know it would not exist. We would be stuck. The World needs people who see things differently and refuse to conform to things because "that is just the way things are".
Now there is no doubt that this phrase has its time and place. It should not be used for everything, but if you are in need of confidence. Just repeat the phrase even if it is in only in your head. The second you focus on your wants and needs and let the world not matter, that is when you will be the most yourself.
And i leave you with one more piece of advice, "If something doesn't exist, create it!" (my College Professor)
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