Living solo in LA has been the best and worst experience.
It's lonely. Like really lonely. I'm living in a place where it seems like everyone wants to be someone else. They're chasing dreams and trying to be somebody, just like me. The lonely part is that they can't see the somebody in the mirror.
They see a work in progress, which we all are.
They're waiting in line and trying to get somewhere. Into the offices of agents and producers. They walk in with work in hand and try to pitch ideas and themselves. Then they apologize for wasting their time, because somehow they can't see the value in who they are and what they do.
They may not be Meryl Streep or Christopher Nolan, but they're worth just as much.
We live in a world where we're always trying to get somewhere. We can never be happy with exactly where we are, especially if it's sitting in our bed watching Netflix and writing a blog post. And, yeah, that may be where I'm at right now.
I went to a college, much like everyone else, where good enough just wasn't good enough. I pushed myself to so many breaking points and told myself that crying over an A- or B was okay. I told myself it would make me better.
I had myself convinced that if I was so anxious I felt like jumping off a cliff, I must be in a good spot. I had to be on the verge of greatness, right?
I was self-deprecating, just like so many. Saying my work was horrible and I wasn't good enough and it wasn't good enough, and claiming that was normal because I was an artist and I could never be satisfied with what I do.
That's a lie.
It's all a lie.
I don't care who you are or what you do. You are valuable. Your time is just as valuable as anyone else's, so don't apologize for wanting to meet with producers or agents or CEOs or anyone. They should feel just as honored to meet you as you are to meet them.
Your value and your worth is not based on your degree, GPA, years of experience, social media following, or the amount of money in your bank account.
Your value is based on the fact that you're human. A human being created in the image of God Himself, just like every other human on this planet.
I'm a writer. I write some really crappy stuff, but I also write some really good stuff. I'm sick of looking at every piece of my work and thinking it's sub-par. Thinking it's stupid or unworthy of praise.
Why can't we be satisfied?
Sure, we should always strive for better, but that doesn't mean we have to hate ourselves and our work. It doesn't mean we can't give ourselves a pat on the back.
After all, in kindergarten you get a gold star for finishing a coloring page or a sheet of addition problems. Shoot, you get gold star for making it through the day without hurting someone or throwing something.
So, I'm here to give you some gold stars.
Did you get out of bed today? Congrats, here's a gold star. I didn't make it out until 11:30am. But, hey, I did make it out.
Did you get some work done today? Maybe you wrote a story or drew a picture or filed some kind of paperwork. Maybe you wrote a sentence on your novel. Congratulations, you deserve a gold star.
Did you drink some coffee today? Yeah, me too. Not sure if I can give you a gold star for that, but I'll certainly give you a high five.
Life is hard.
Adulting is hard.
Teenage-ing is hard.
Who am I kidding? Human-ing is hard.
Give yourself a break. Remember your worth and your value even when others try to take it away.
Oh, and don't forget that gold star. We all need one now and again.