I was reminded that people who read my posts might think that–because of the positivity, the new ideas, etc.–I have it all figured out, and things are flowing and groovy. And that’s just not true. Not that things are bad, no. But, it is a struggle–a struggle that’s well worth it, but a struggle nonetheless.
It’s important for me to share this side of things, because everybody is struggling with stuff–esp. folks like me who are trying to build a life around their passion, around what we were put here to do.
What IS true is that there are moments when this is true–when things are positive and the new ideas are flowing. And maybe that’s the stuff I focus on when I’m writing these posts. But, that’s pretty rare, and it is not my day-to-day reality.
So, what IS my day-to-day reality?
I wake up early, eat, and do my workout. (I mention the workout not because it makes me sound fabulous, but because it is one of the most important things I do to reduce stress and feel good.) Then I drive 45 min. to do a job that is massively important to the community and wonderfully rewarding, but it’s not my passion. It’s paying the bills until my teaching and performing practices can pay their own way.
Then in the afternoon and evenings I teach, practice, or rehearse and do development work for my teaching and performing practice. And like many of you, all that has to happen while I’m tired from the emotionally demanding hours at my day job. (It is a wonderfully rewarding job, but it is very emotionally taxing.)
So what do I freak out about? Well, I worry that…
- I’m too old to do this stuff
- I’m too much of a well-kept-secret; that while there parts of my teaching and performing practice that are uniquely valuable, very few people know about it
- I’m too much of an introvert to effectively do the development that’s needs to be done for these businesses to pay their own way
- I’m too lazy to do the development needed to grow the business
- That I need to move to LA to reach my full potential as a performer (I’m not resisting this idea, but I do have a family to think of)
- That I don’t have any playing gigs lined up right now
- That I’m not being a good example for my daughter
- That this pursuit of my passion is putting too much of a strain on my family
- That I’m not doing enough to save for retirement
- That I’m not bringing in enough money
…I could go on, but I think you get the idea.
I was just reading a post from Scott Dinsmore–the man behind Live Your Legend. He had this to say about this issue:
“The emotional swings of pursing a life you care about – and doing work that actually matters – are intense. There’s no getting around it, whether it’s building a business, changing careers or simply being true to who you know you are. It’s going to be rough.”
And, no matter how amazing and positive some folks blog or Facebook posts might sound, we are all going through the same struggles. It is what it is. Anything worth doing is worth fighting for. The types of struggles I talk about here are, in a way, just part of being in the arena, fighting the good fight.
When I was in high school and college, I was in a drum corps. This meant I had a very intense schedule that none of my buddies in school had. It meant 2-3 rehearsals a week during school, one 3-day, weekend ‘camp’ rehearsal per month in the winter and spring, and most every day of summer was given to rehearsing, performing and traveling (often all three in the same day). I was way more busy than anyone I knew outside of drum corps, but it was–for me–WAY more rewarding than anything else I could have done with my time.
What I’m going through now is very much like this–a tough struggle day-to-day, but the rewards are amazing. Infrequent, but amazing 😉
What types of things are freaking you out on a day-to-day basis? What are you doing to cope with it?