DO YOU WANT TO? ARE YOU WILLING TO?
|Aspiring artists wait until they want to do something.|
They wait until they’re flat-out inspired.
They wait until they’re 100% motivated.
They wait until they’re fully ‘in the mood’.
And while they are wait,
Their art studio accumulates rent,
Their notebooks gather dust,
And their creative muscles get rusty.
Then, they use their inaction as proof that they must not be an artist.
This is a sneaky perfectionist TRAP.
And it is absolutely NOT true.
Do. Not. Wait.
Let your wanting to want be enough.
The difference between an aspiring artist and a real artist is that when real artists don’t want to, they do what they’re willing to.
A few weeks ago, I learned this distinction in a class teaching consent.
In Betty Martin‘s framework, people can want-to OR be willing-to do something.
When you want-to, you agree to do something to fulfill your own desire.
When you are willing-to, you agree to do something to fulfill someone else’s desire.
This means you can be willing-to do things you don’t want-to do.
And that not only applies to agreements you make with other people, but also agreements you make with yourself.
Right now, for instance, casting for TV, film, and theatre has gone virtual. And as an actor, I don’t necessarily want-to learn how to self-tape auditions at home. I don’t want-to learn how to light myself, optimize sound, and edit clips in iMovie. I want-to imagine myself as the character, in their relationships, and living in their environment instead.
However, I am willing-to learn these skills for my Future Self, who doesn’t want to worry about whether she can be seen and heard in all her auditions. I am willing-to do this so for the peace of mind that tech will never be in the way of Future Me booking a role.
When you don’t want to, what can you be willing to do?
Let your willingness be enough.
See what happens.
As a coach, I help creatives play with the size and scale of what they want to and are willing to do so that they keep going. You do not have to abandon yourself or your projects, . Get support instead. Book your consult.
P.S. What happens when you expand your wantingness and willingness? In our time together, my multi-maven client, C. Feldman quit her job and started two businesses. She says:
At the beginning, I was working in a corporate job that I very much did not like. I was staring down another year of that work, feeling trapped and disempowered.
The container of our coaching allowed me to envision a different path for myself. You helped me to see the gumption, skills, and support I already possessed. The newfound insights encouraged me to leave behind my unfulfilling (and,
frankly, dead-end) job in pursuit of my aspirations.
I quit my job, I started a business (technically, two), and I’ve been able to create space in my life for personal pleasures. It all comes from a greater self-trust and self-compassion. Our time together strengthened my understanding that progress isn’t a straight upward trajectory. By giving myself permission to seek out what interests me and believing what I am doing is sufficient, I can tackle anything.