Week 14 - Seriously or Personally


This can be one of the most tricky distinctions in being an artist.

For those who work jobs that feel like a means to a paycheck it can perhaps feel a little less sticky.

But once the job feels personal things get complicated.

Auditioning is deeply personal and so, not booking the job can feel deeply personal. The biggest mistake of the audition process can be that we are more concerned with the casting director liking and validating us then serving the story and character at hand.

And it is tricky.
It all feels so personal!

“Watch a kid play a board game and you see what happens when serious and personal intersect. It is not that the game is being lost, it’s that HE is losing. The outcome of the game is a personal one, a referendum on his worth as a human being.” — Seth Godin

Auditions OFTEN (maybe always) feel this way.
If we don’t book, or get a call back it is PERSONAL. WE lost.
WE did something wrong.
WE were not liked or chosen.

None of this is our job, our business or conducive to us being a great artist. Our job is to take SERIOUSLY our art.

With this approach we see each audition is training ground, as learning, and as new information to help us be our best. Whether we “win” or “lose” is NOT relevant. What we learn and how our artistry moves closer and closer to mastery, is.

If we are making the outcome of our work personal than the rub is that our work actually gets LESS personal.

Being an artist is a PERSONAL and INTIMATE experience and expression.

Yet if we are always attached to outcome (which statistically 90% or more of the time is not favorable for us) we will have an inability to KEEP our work personal as a means of protection.

When the work is personal, doing it well becomes difficult. Our fear of outcome leads us to hide and ironically depersonalize our work because failing is all too much to bear.” —Seth Godin

When we play and create and endeavor in our craft PROFESSIONALLY we are not concerned with failing. We know we will and so we don’t concern ourselves with that. We make it our job to learn, grow and create. That is it.

We take our work seriously by participating in it.
By sticking with the value and commitment to personal and evolving work.
NOT by depersonalizing our work to feel safe or to not fail.
NOT by taking outcome and criticism personally.
NOT by distracting ourselves from our work with competition or the illusion of winning.

That is what amateurs do.


Jen Rudolph