“What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.”― Robert F. Kennedy First, a confession: Although I pride myself on my ability to dialog and find a common […]
Question submitted via Formspring:
“Hello, I am on the journey of my life moving leaving everything i know to move to NYC by myself. I had to stay in a shelter and am still here. I
have a job but the main reason for coming here was to evolve into a respected actor and writer. Haven’t got anything done and just living in a routine of work and back to the shelter. I need my training but can’t afford it. I’m going have to spend the holidays in here. Not to mention my continuous failure with women. My confidence in everything is at a bottom and I refuse to call my mom for support. I just know i need to change because who i am is a weak beans. People see me as angry or sad. I’m doing my best to smile through but I’m at bottom and don’t know what to do.”
I understand your frustration, so let’s see what we can do. First, let’s break this down into pieces:
You moved to NYC by yourself (bravo!), but you’ve been staying in a shelter.
Your goal is to be a writer and an actor, but you’ve been stuck in the routine of surviving.
You know you need training to improve, but can’t afford it.
You’ll be in the shelter for the holidays (how long have you been there?)
You can’t get a date.
Your confidence is at bottom, but you don’t want to ask your mom for help.
You come across as angry and sad, and don’t know how to change.
Well, my first question would be: Where did you intend to stay when you arrived, and why aren’t you there now? Although it may be you didn’t have a place lined up, and at least you have a roof over your head, so that’s a good place to start. I’m actually going to jump ahead a bit to the point about not wanting to ask for help. Really, you’ve got two choices: Ask, since if you need help, you need help; it happens to absolutely all of us sometimes. There are two things I can tell you for certain do not exist: The Self-Made Man and the Overnight Success. Everyone needs a hand sometimes.
However, if you DON’T want to ask for help, then you have to admit this is what you are choosing for yourself and stop resisting it. That’s like being sad about being trapped in a cage that locks from the inside; if your current state is preferable to calling home, then it must not be ALL bad. Only you can decide if that is you being courageous, or blinded by your ego. You might get an earful from her, but words can’t hurt you, and that’s part of what makes Mom, Mom.
Now, whether or not you choose to ask for help: If your goal is to be a writer, write. Do something every single day that’s going to get you closer to your goal. That’s what no one tells you about pursuing your dreams: It’s a long, hard, climb. But writing is an individual sport, no one is stopping you from practicing but you. Even acting can be done by yourself if you are acting out scenes. You can choose to look at this time like Thoreau’s time in the woods, when you can focus on honing your craft completely free from distractions.
Now you need training but can’t afford it, which happens. The solution there is, start looking for a better job. Don’t quit the one you’ve got, but start keeping your eyes open for the next thing. Craigslist is fantastic for job hunting. Because the day to day grind of surviving can and will consume you if you let it. You have to consciously decide to put your foot down and make your creative work your focus, which your job exists to support. Otherwise it will always be a ‘someday maybe’ goal.
As for the girls, I’ve got some bad news for you, man: Girls tend not to like sad, angry guys living in shelters; unless they are equally sad and angry, of course. This is a time to focus on YOURSELF, and taking the next step in your journey. The solution to how you feel right now is absolutely not going to come from another person; it will come from you and you alone.
“There is nothing outside of yourself that can ever enable you to get better, stronger, richer, quicker, or smarter. Everything is within. Everything exists. Seek nothing outside of yourself.”― Miyamoto Musashi, The Book of Five Rings
The way to stop being angry and sad…here are 3 simple rules for a happy life.
One other thing, I highly, *highly* recommend you read the Meditations by Marcus Aurelius; it’s some of the best advice ever give for enduring tough times.
In the end, this is the path you chose for yourself, and if you believe it is truly what you are meant to do, then you have to see it through to its conclusion. And if you don’t believe it’s what you’re meant to be doing, do something else instead. There’s nothing to be angry about; everything is under your control!
What do you think? Feel free to comment down below!
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B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host
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Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog
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