A journey can be hard for different reasons. Investing money into a vision or a project, dealing with constant rejection, and working at jobs you don’t like can all be taxing. But recently, I’ve noticed a new challenge: the ability to respond appropriately.
Years of sales taught me any human can say any thing at any time, but it’s up to me to control my behavior (and that’s all I can really control). But lately, it’s been taken to a whole new level.
Emotional grenades (as I call them) are coming hard and heavy these days. Annoying responses like, “Now does that make money?” or “Oh, how’d you get into that?” (as if there’s some door I stumbled into) are bombarding my psyche on a daily basis. I know the right answer is to choose a responsible behavior when I feel the negative stimuli stirring within me, but it’s an exercise.
One of my therapists (my favorite one) drilled into my head that I don’t know what other people are thinking. It changed my life. Unless they tell you, you don’t know what a person is thinking. Even then, they can take different action from what they say they’re thinking. Telling myself I know what others are thinking is pointless.
So I accept that I don’t know what people are thinking when they say, “Now does that make money?” Maybe they’re being nice. Maybe they legitimately want to know. Maybe they're looking for inspiration. I don’t know what they’re thinking or why they’re asking, but I have to choose to respond appropriately and be a professional. After all, being a creative professional isn’t about who can come up with the wildest ideas, it’s about being a person who creates something that leaves a positive impact on people.