Somebody else’s success.

Published on 12th Jun, 2014

Somebody else’s success.

You see on Facebook or hear in conversation of somebody doing really, REALLY well.  Having big success.  This person is getting YOUR dream dance gig, booking YOUR dream dance tour and you are genuinely happy for them… or you try to be.

PAUSE HERE.

Before you talk about whether you believe they deserve it or how hard you think they worked for it, remember that it’s easy to look at and talk about it. Or even measure what you see as their success against your own. It’s common to wonder how they achieved this success and/or decide to make a similar success your own destination. A lot of the time our perception takes in only the size, shape and colour of the SUCCESS (the win, the fame, the popularity and the Facebook likes) with little consideration for their journey (or your own).

So… is it possible to simply observe this end product ‘big’ success and replicate it? In other words to ‘select all, copy and paste’ into your own life? Is it possible to intentionally create an award-winning dance piece? To simply decide you are the next dancer on the rise or even that you are writing the next best-selling novel, chart topping song or blockbuster movie? I guess it depends on your definition of ‘big’ success and on how grand a scale we are really talking but if you ask me – I’ll say no.

By no I mean that I don’t believe that simply following somebody else’s apparent formula, mimicking the pieces you see, copying each action, taking their exact steps or falling to your knees longingly as you watch them live with the stars on TV is enough. Talking about whether they deserve it or not, in your opinion, doesn’t get you any closer to your own success either.

I actually believe that the ‘somebodys’ having all of this ‘big’ success didn’t begin with any guarantee at all that it would come.   How could they ever really know what would become of their work as they were creating it? The thing is, as for everyone with anything creative… you have to be willing to risk that it might not be the initial success you imagine, it may in fact nose dive before it soars. This can be scary but these are the risks involved, the giving before the gaining.

For the most part, these ‘somebodys’ set out to determinedly pursue their dreams, to listen to the tough feedback, risk rejection, continue despite rejection, take stock of each small success, rework, adjust, expand, stay focused and keep aiming. Their energy was focused on the creating, the process and not solely on the prize. Focusing only on the prize distracts you from the truth in your work – you begin to paint by numbers rather than follow your heart.

In hearing of somebody doing really well it can be wonderful to witness that the success you dream of actually exists. Just remember that it doesn’t just exist exclusively for this ‘somebody else’.  It can also be enriching and invigorating (if you let it) to associate with people who generate and live in the energy of the success you long for – it helps you create a clear vision of what you would like to bring into your own experience.

So go ahead and define your version of success.  Imagine and intend what it might feel like, own it, don’t be frightened to say it out loud – take a look around you and notice what you crave then begin at the beginning. BE YOU, participate, listen, learn, grow and be grown by each response to your work (as a dancer, as a choreographer, as a chef or author).

Sensational overnight success stories don’t happen overnight, there’s usually a longer journey and process than you first hear of. Copycats and the fake stuff run out of puff, the authentic creations, choreography and dancers come from a place that is oh-so real and this reads oh-so clearly on and offstage.

Be inspired by it, reminded, informed and taught by it but let go of measuring yourself against somebody else’s success.   Somebody else’s success may nudge you towards finding your own but let it be just that.

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