Stop Apologizing For Being You

What’s one of your embarrassing qualities you wish you could change? 

Before I share mine, a story! Well, not a real story. More of a comment. If you’re reading this, you know I enjoy writing. The cool thing about writing is you can go back and fix your words as many times as you want before sharing them with others. Unfortunately, this isn’t how things work in “real life” when you’re having, you know, a real conversation.

I love talking to others. I don’t mind being in front of large groups of people.  Yet I have this incredible tendency to stutter and stumble over my words. This is quite the embarrassing quality to have, especially when you’re a creative artist. I often find myself wishing I was more articulate and less socially awkward. There are even times when I fear that I’ve bothered others with my stuttering and stumbling.

The most recent time this happened was yesterday. (We’ll skip the more recent stuttering incident which took place talking to myself in the shower this morning.) Again, I became concerned that I was being a nuisance. For whatever reason, I quickly found myself asking these questions:

1) Am I actually offending anyone?

2) If I am, am I doing this on purpose?

It’s okay to be embarrassed by our habits. Just as long as it’s not causing us stress or pain. In fact, I want to encourage everyone to stop apologizing for doing things that make you the awesome person you are. As long as you’re not doing them to offend anyone, you have no reason to apologize. You’re being you! Even if this entails some silly qualities, why apologize?

Wanna know the best part? I’m willing to bet a lot of our friends enjoy our flaws.

Slurve Crew
I can’t promise that this group enjoys my flaws. But I’ve been friends with them for such a long time, they at least have a high tolerance of them

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Think of a quality or habit that you may be embarrassed by. Are you purposefully doing it to offend someone? I doubt it. Go ahead and stop apologizing for it. Today.

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This Apparently Happens When Pursuing Your Dream Job

I had an “Aha!” moment last night.

I spent half of my week at the Wisconsin-Illinois border for a film shoot with Surging Films and Theatrics.

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This was the awesome house we stayed at.

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This is the backyard of the awesome house we stayed at. Nothing but nature. And a cool bench. I totally sat in it.

 

Then I spent most of yesterday on set for a print shoot.

Staples shoot

Stole this one from Reggie Luis (standing in the back)! We enjoyed taking pictures during our down time….

Group 2

…like, really enjoyed taking pictures.

 

Then I got home. I got ready for my workout and started thinking about all the things I needed to catch up on. I only had a day before it was back to waiting tables and pretending to care about what kind of toast people want. Pretty soon I started to get frustrated and upset.

“AHA!”

Have you figured it out yet? (It’s okay if you haven’t.)

I just had a wonderful week of doing what I love….only to come home and look forward to a weekend of doing what I…um…don’t love. I went from an extreme high to an extreme low. (For those of you who need another example: Think about coming home from a great vacation, and then going to work and pretending to care about what kind of toast people want.)

When we’re in the early stages of our fun, creative careers, we experience lots of highs and lows. And I’m willing to bet they’ll be part of the job once we’re further along as well.

[Guys in the back start grumbling because I haven’t explained how to handle this situation yet]

Oh. You were expecting me to give a solution to this one? Ah….see….I only just said my “Aha!” out loud, like, fifteen hours ago. I’m still going through this. How about I explain what I’m did after (in the form of bullet points – so it sounds like I’ve reached this awesome, incredible conclusion)?

[Guys in the back continue grumbling, but accept this]

Okay good. Here’s what I did:

-Poured myself a glass of wine.

-Poured myself a second glass of wine.

-Allowed myself to have some late night snacks, despite the fact that my nutrition has been god awful lately.

-Stayed up later than I should have watching television shows that shoot in Chicago.

(See above bullet points mentioning wine)

Basically I’m using my When Doing Things The Right Way Doesn’t Work technique. I had a bad nutrition week and am waited another day get back on track. Sometimes we need to allow ourselves to fail in order to start succeeding again.

Anyone else go from an awesome high to an awful low before?

[Guys in the back point out that I just said “awesome –“]

Shut up. You know what I mean.

What does “success” mean to you?

Story from earlier today:

I started stressing out.

[Guys in the back start grumbling about how I always – ]

SHUT UP.  I’m talking. I started stressing out over things like writing, acting, memorizing, and other creative things. Creative things. Things that six-months-ago-Tony would have killed to be stressed out about. Yet I was focusing on the negatives. And I couldn’t figure out why.

Then it hit me: I didn’t think of any of my creative things as a “success” because they weren’t generating a large income. I had labeled “success” as something fun, creative, but also paid the bills. And right now, these things weren’t paying the bills.

It would appear that I have some work to do. Not just memorizing or writing. Mindset. I need to redefine success. Because if I don’t, who’s to say that I’ll ever really be “successful?”

Here’s the crazy thing: I was doing so good at this earlier in the week! I felt successful going to auditions without worrying about getting cast. I was celebrating replies from writing employers, despite that they were asking about qualifications I didn’t have.

This is the mindset I want to have with all of my work. I recommend you do the same J  

What are some areas you might need to redefine, in order to be successful?