Thursday, November 26, 2015

Good intentions & gratitude: how much is enough?

On this day when Americans focus on giving thanks, I'm grateful for the bounty of food, family, friends and work I've had this year.

And I'm also grateful for me. Some may think that conceited. But I'm the one who gets up every morning, sits at my desk (usually by 7AM) and works to build a better life for myself despite the siren call of distractions from TV and books I want to read to errands that need running. Who picks herself up after rejection after rejection and setbacks and continues to believe she can earn a living as a full-time actor, author, writer and speaker.

Even so, negative thoughts sometimes stymie my good intentions to do more, work more, self-market more, write more, have a positive attitude. Putting positive energy into the world is preferable, as is being satisfied with what you have. But is what you've done enough?

An actor always needs more submissions, auditions and bookings. An author needs more sales and followers and accolades from contest wins to good reviews. A single person who wants a relationship needs to meet more people. A person on a diet may face a daily struggle to avoid their favorite fattening foods and to exercise more.

When things you truly want and things you've worked for elude you, sometimes life feels like an ongoing test. Have I done enough? How will you handle your reaction to lack of success? From the agent who says no to the jobs you didn't book to not finding someone you want to date who wants to date you? The discipline required to exercise if you don't enjoy it, to put in the hours to finish and then market that novel? Can you believe that persistence pays, winners never quit? Can you be grateful for all you do have?

Can you accept, just for today, that you've done enough and enjoy?   

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