"The first step to living a life of passion and purpose is to remove the barriers that hold you back." - Adam Baker, Man Vs. DebtSooooo, I'm still working on my Personal Statement Draft for Juilliard. It's coming together. But striking that balance between being honest/raw/open/vulnerable about where I've come from and what I had to do to get to where I am now... and still managing to show my bubbly-passionate-desire-to-inspire-self is really challenging.
It's a balancing act... Heavy/Light... Dark/Bright... Negative/Positive. One without the other will not give the full picture.
There is much shitty-ness that is a part of my story... and I often choose NOT to focus on that part... for various reasons... The greatest of which is... I have found that focusing on the negativity of the past has never helped me to create a more positive future. So I try to spend as little time walking down negative-memory-lane as possible.
But with this Personal Statement... it's tough NOT to go there... I don't want to wallow in the past, but I don't want to deny it either. The dark times have become a part of who I am now and have helped to shape me. They've made me appreciate my successes and blessings soooo much more than if everything had come easily.
And... as avid-AcceptanceProject-blog-follower-Alexis reminded me in a VERY HELPFUL phone call late last night regarding the Personal Statement... the thing that makes us unique and inspiring to each other are not our pains or our obstacles (everybody's got those to contend with to varying degrees)... but HOW we manage to overcome them and get to a more positive/happy/successful/awesome life. Everybody can relate to that struggle/journey and get on-board the HOPE train! Tell THAT story and people will both...A. root for your success and B. be inspired to pursue self-betterment themselves!
Sigh... Anyway, that's great and all... But it's not enough to just to KNOW what I want to communicate in the Personal Statement... The key (that I am trying to get to) is HOW to communicate that idea successfully... in 2 pages... double-spaced.... Still working on that part.
Luckily I've got 4 more days to figure it out... before I have to press SEND and submit the application.
TONS of time... Not.
I wish I was gutsy enough to send in a personal statement that looked like the following...
Ha ha ha!!! Can you imagine?... Sigh... Hilarious.
But.. no... that would be a cop-out. Because I'd only be doing it out of laziness... trying to avoid having to get to my bottom-line and be REALLY specific and concise about WHY I WANT TO BE AN ACTOR... and HOW I HOPE MY WORK WILL HAVE A POSITIVE IMPACT ON THE WORLD... and WHY JUILLIARD'S PROGRAM SPECIFICALLY RESONATES WITH ME AND WILL HELP ME ON MY JOURNEY OF ARTISTIC GROWTH.
Soooo here's TODAY'S PLAN OF ACTION in re-writing my Personal Statement...
Step 1: Go to the movies... and (hopefully) be inspired by some amazing acting
Step 2: Go to yoga... to let my body sweat and allow my subconscious mind to mix-up all the ideas I want to incorporate into the next draft of the Personal Statement (perhaps inspiration will hit me during final savasana?)
Step 3: Come home, shower, make a cup of tea, turn on my computer, read what I've already written and see if I am even remotely inspired by my own words... If not... my "literary babies" will have to be sacrificed (cut or rewritten) in the interest of the greater good (a personal statement that is true to who I was... true to who I am am... and most importantly... true to who I am becoming!)
All that... in 2 pages... double spaced... 12 point font.
"Human qualities like creativity, helpfulness, and hope can't be commanded; they can only be inspired in people. You can't order somebody to have a great idea. You can't mandate rich, creative collaborations. You can't command a doctor or nurse to be more humane and show compassion at a patient's bedside. You can't really motivate or coerce a teacher to be more hopeful and create a sense of possibility in the classrom. You can't sufficiently motivate a sales representative to engender trust in every interaction. The lucky ones figure it out early on their own, but others need to be inspired to bring out these qualities." - Dov Seidman, How: Why How We Do Anything Means Everything