Week 3 - Freedom and the Problem with Freedom


Here we are. Living in 2019. Living in the land of the free.
We have everything at our fingertips an unlimited choices.
There are over 900 hours of scripted content on television per week.

There are new streaming networks popping up all the time creating the need for more and more content — creating more and more opportunities for us.

As Seth Godin writes:

“Now, more than ever more of us have the freedom to care, The freedom to connect
The freedom to choose
The freedom to initiate

The freedom to do what matters....

If we choose.”

So why wouldn’t we choose it?
What would ever stop us from choosing to be free? From connecting, expressing, initiating, from doing what matters with our lives?

Because as Seth say, “we believe we can’t handle it.”

“Freedom brings the appearance of risk, Freedom brings responsibility,
Freedom means we must make a choice.”

When we set ourselves free from the job we hate, or the conditions that don’t serve us or the life someone else wanted us to live we must take a BIG risk. The risk of not being accepted, not being loved, not being “safe”, not being taken care of, not being enough and even not being SURE.

The world has a way of working and if we plug into its machine we can pretty much know we will have predictable results.

If you work that job for 40 years you will get that pension.
If you go to med school and residency you will get your doctor position. If you workout and eat less calories than you burn you will lose weight.

But MANY of us decided to be artists to break free of this system. We didn’t want to do a job we hated or felt disconnected from to make money.
We didn’t want to slave away and look forward to weekends.
We didn’t want to live someone else’s dream for us.
We were brave enough to CHOOSE freedom and now we have to be brave enough to keep on standing for it.

Erich Fromm said:

“Modern man is still anxious and tempted to surrender his freedom to dictators of all kinds, or to lose it by transforming himself into a small cog in the machine, well fed, well clothed, yet not a free man but an automaton.”

We came this far for freedom, let us not give it up now to be part of yet another machine... the machine of the INDUSTRY.

The machine that says “look this way”, “do this thing”, “make art that SELLS.” What is the freedom YOU long for?

Do you want to create a stand up routine that NO ONE might ever see but it would scare and delight you to do it? Do you want to sing your face off at Karaoke? Do you want to take a painting class or pottery class or cooking class just for FUN?
How does YOUR art want to express itself and be FREE?

Being an artist has nothing to do with how many auditions you do.
It has nothing to do with how many credits you have.
What if your measure of FREEDOM was how expressed your impulses and desires were? What would THAT manifest as?

As Seth says, “freedom is our problem and our opportunity.” Choose wisely. Natalie

Jen Rudolph