Trust Your Instincts
Last year I met with a well-meaning mentor who told me I should focus my attention on writing more plays because that's where I've experienced the most success. Intellectually, that made a lot of sense. My plays have been moderately successful. It seemed sensible to continue the trajectory before parlaying into others arenas.
However, after being still, I realized; that's never been how my creative spirit operates. I passionately create...and I don't care what genre it's in. Plays, television pilots, novels, screenplays (historical, horror, or drama), or short films, I write what's in my heart.
However, being self-reflective is really important to me as an artist. So, I had to sit down and honestly ask myself the daunting question, "What if I'm truly spreading myself too thin?" The answer that came back, from the depth of my soul was, "What if I'm not?"
So, frankly, I didn't listen to the mentor in the conventional way. What I did do, was focus this year on getting all my completed written material out into the universe and letting it decide. I had never done that before and to say I was a bit "nervous," was an understatement.
Guess what? Each of my projects, in all the different genres, have been recognized in some special way. What a blessing. An even greater blessing is that I'm truly happy embracing my artistry.
We all experience self doubt at times in our lives and you may have "well-intentioned," people who give you what appears to be logical advice. Listen...but be true to yourself and most importantly, trust your instincts.
See...had I not truly listened to that mentor when he told me I should solely focus on my plays in order to gain more notoriety, I may never have set out to prove my own internal theory that I'm simply an artist who creates. And that I have been blessed with a unique gift to do so. I don't take that for granted.
We all have gifts and talents embedded in our DNA that allow us to experience and show our unique perspectives about the world around us. What are yours? Trust in yourself. Trust in the process. Listen to the well-intentioned, who truly have your back, then go out into the world, forge ahead, break barriers, and create pathways for others to follow, on your own terms.
Nothing is promised. Nothing is easy. There are no rules. So, trust your heart and create them!
Aaron Braxton is an award winning writer/actor living in Los Angeles. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.