You Hold the Power…Yes, YOU
In creative work, we get used to looking toward others – agents, managers, publishers, producers – as the people who have the power and the responsibility to make us successful. And while these people play an important role in the business of creative work, they have less power than you think over your career.
(Now, if you’re an agent, manager, publisher or producer, don’t get me wrong – your work is invaluable and needed. We appreciate you – and if you aren’t being appreciated, you should be.)
What I’m talking about here is what I call the “you” factor.
Think about the best performances, most moving books, the films scenes you can’t forget, music that really swept you into emotion. What do they all have in common?
Individuals who brought the full force of their souls into their work.
People who didn’t shrink, hide, play it safe emotionally. People who felt something real and deep when they created their work.
Yes, the most powerful creative people are powerful because they understand that the weight of their soul is what makes the difference. It’s what people respond to. Business decisions don’t always get made based on this, mind you, but if you’re creating solely for the income you might receive and not because creating is simply who you are…then you should rethink if this line of work is what will bring you the most joy.
You are the key to your best work. Your soul. Who you are. That uniqueness that is you. All the emotion, struggle, pain, joy and summation of your lifetimes of experience.
You are the most important factor in your work. Technique, craft, tips, practice – these are essential, yes. And they can teach you to create high-quality work. But in the midst of it all, only your soul has the power to connect us and elevate your work to its highest level.
We need that from you. You have it to give.
So take a risk, put your soul into it. Have something to say. Say it. Show it.
Connect us to you.
Posted on Thursday, in Story. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.
Brilliant post. Couldn’t agree more. I tell my students to be mindful of this and sound very convincing when I do so, but I too am prone to this way of thinking myself. I suppose that means in that way I know what I’m talking about.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking your success, either artistic or financial, lies entirely in the hands of others, outside of you. The authenticity and quality of what you do plays a much bigger role. It’s my opinion that once you get those agents, publishers and producers after having put a lot of yourself into the work, you stand a much better chance of not just success but lasting success.
Absolutely! Thanks, Phil. “Lasting success”…big distinguisher from success. Authenticity is so important, but it takes courage to maintain it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!