Last year, we filmed a project called Red Light (part of F10 Films‘ Project 12 Film Series). Not surprisingly, it concerned a young man’s visit to Amsterdam’s Red Light district. Though the movie was well-received by those who did see it, some of our crew and fan base opted out of the production/viewing process due to the more adult nature of the film.
Honestly, I applaud those who did not attend. They didn’t feel comfortable. They acted on their conscience. It’s so important we stop pretending to be something other than we truly are. So much damage can be done by trying to fit in or being in situations not meant for us. (Much harm can be done by the naysayers who say we are off our rockers for doing this, as well.)
Let us never forget we have the ability, even the right, to say “no.” It is a powerful ability indeed, albeit one we should use with good discernment and care. When we use “no” well, we not only gain the respect of our peers, but also the freedom to say “yes” to opportunities later on.
Those opportunities may not be easy. In fact, the biggest growth opportunities are ones in which I have been way over my head. There are times in those seasons that I have wanted to quit, have reached the edge of physical and mental limitations but something inside compels me to keep going. And, when I reach the end of those season, it is all worth it.
I think back upon the story of a young woman, Kylie Bisutti, who dreamed of being a Victoria’s Secret model. She got the gig but quit shortly thereafter, stating that she did not feel comfortable showing her body to the world. Sure, she got flack for it, but at the end of the day: it’s goes back to your relationship with yourself and your Higher Power. If a situation is not for you, gracefully remove yourself from it.
So, looking upon all this, we can say that your dream job may not actually be for you, and a shot-in-the-dark may not be your opportunity of a lifetime. How do you know the difference? Well, sometimes, it’s as intangible as a gut feeling, something inside you knows that this opportunity is or isn’t you. What is more, never forget the importance of feedback. If you wanna know if you’re where you should be, ask those you trust. Nine times out of ten, they’ll tell you. They’ll cut right past the pleasantries and head straight for the heart while probably asking probing questions along the way. In those situations, make sure to give them license to be frank, and listen with a humble spirit. Even if they tell you what you don’t want to hear, listen. Once again, please reserve your right to say “no,” but do so cautiously. Remember: these are people who may know you even better than you do in this situation.
Surely, our journey through this life is a complicated one. At the end of things, I am almost certain that we will all look back and see opportunities that you missed and traps you fell into (I can already do so, even at the age of thirty). Still, through all of this, both the victories and the defeats, make sure to give yourself grace and keep moving forward. Remember: You are beautiful, you are loved. My fondest prayers go out to you on your journey.