What is success?
Growing up, I was taught that success is how much money you have in the bank (or how big your house is and what kind of car you drive,) and how prestigious your job is.
My dad wanted me to be a pediatrician or a lawyer. That was where the money was. Artists are starving and never find success. That was the success story I adopted and have been playing out my whole life.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t my story of success, so it’s no wonder why I feel like I am failing. I’m using someone else’s idea of success as a measuring stick to beat myself up everyday.
What is that nagging feeling of failure really?
Have you ever felt the pangs of failure due to someone else’s perception of you and your current situation?
I sure hope not, it sucks.
But if you have, please read on…
Recently, I have had to redefine success in my own mind in order to overcome issues such as “imposter syndrome” and other uncomfortable feelings that can bring one down and halt any real progress.
The reason I have chosen to redefine success is due to the number of times I have seen social media posts about performers being in a “sold out” show and other social “tactics” designed to elicit FOMO. (Fear OF Missing Out)
Again, I hope you have not fallen victim to this gross game.
I haven’t produced a “Sold Out” show since Rocky Horror Picture Show: A Burlesque Tribute back in February.
For the Love…
Still, my performers continually enjoy working with me and pouring their hearts out onstage with me.
Because each time I produce a show, it is my dominant intent to enjoy the entire process of the production from pre-production to performing in it.
I produce shows for the fun of it, not to make money. I produce shows to enjoy the journey of taking an amazing idea and turning into a real, tangible product for people to enjoy.
I don’t do it to sell out houses. It would be nice, of course, but overall, my intention is to create beautiful pieces of performance art that people can enjoy if they choose to.
How do I now define success?
Defining success is still a constant battle internally, but more and more I am beginning to see that happiness and satisfaction are the true meaning of success.
It’s not the size of my audience, but the pleasure that is experienced on both sides, whether there are twelve or five hundred people in the audience.
That is why I produce and perform—to inspire and uplift all that choose to attend AND perform in my shows.
So when someone asks me “How did your show go? Was it a good turnout?”
I reply “Yes, it turned out to be quite fun!”
What do you think? Are you using someone else’s stick to measure YOUR success?
Athena, aka Gazella