If there’s heaven for me, I’m sure it has a beach attached to it
National Beach Day – I’m in the studio but still celebrating. My computer is streaming the sound of waves crashing. I have all my palm tree and sea turtle décor, a bunch of shells, and even a little jar of beach sand that my daughter decorated! It’s not the same as being there but then it’s a lot less hassle than going too.
That’s the thing about the beach. It’s wonderful to be there but not always fun to get there…or to get set up once you are there. I live about 3 hours from my nearest beach on the Texas Gulf Coast. The drive sucks! And the packing & preparation before even making the drive is even worse. And once there, a decent spot is hard to come by because the beach is overrun…and if that’s not annoying enough it’s a huge fight against the wind to get a tent a stood up and stable, especially when you’re covered in greasy sunblock.
But once all that’s behind you, you crack a beer, breath in the salt air and everything melts away except that moment.
A lot of life’s experiences rest on a continuum just like that…you’re where you are, and you know where you want to be but there are all these plights and obstacles in between. And even once you overcome those difficulties and reach that moment of Zen…it’s only a moment. And you’re on to the next continuum with its own set of hurdles and so on and so forth ad infinitum.
And you’re always asking yourself, “is it worth it?” “Will the outcome make me happier?” “Why should I bother?” and the questions themselves increase your stress and anxiety in a viscous cycle of negativity!
Don’t do that.
The point is to enjoy being on the continuum all the time…not to tie your happiness and self-worth to minuscule little points on it. Happiness is a choice, not as destination. And everything you do is on a continuum…it’s part of a process intersecting with myriad more processes and continuums.
Your voice acting career is one of those continuums. Every point on that continuum is valuable if for no other reason than the learning opportunity it provides. Enjoy it! And while you’re at it…work on some behavioral continuums that can improve every experience. A few examples include:
- Be trusting but not naïve
- Be candid but not insensitive
- Be kind but not fragile
- Be confident but not arrogant
- Have fun but take your work seriously
By the way, behavioral continuums are useful in script analysis performance too but that’s another post.
Like a trip to the beach, your voice over journey is on a continuum. A process full of variables that just is what it is…your attitude is the only variable you can really control. Although I admit I have found a way to USE the wind to help me set up my beach tent instead of working against it. Do with that what you will.
And remember that National Beach Day is as much about keeping beaches clean as it is about enjoying them. And if you can’t pick up beach trash, just pick up trash in your neighborhood…and clean the trash out of your mind that keeps you asking whether your voice acting obstacles are worth overcoming. They are and they are worth having and learning from too, just as much as are the positive milestones on your continuum.
And if all else fails, stream the sound of waves crashing, look at beach pictures, take a deep breath, and find a little salt-life Zen.