Snap Back to Reality

Snap back to reality, oh! There goes gravity…

If you don’t recognize the song that this post’s title comes from, I’ll need to point you back a handful of years to a relatively successful movie called 8 Mile and its star, an extremely controversial, multidimensional, and multitalented man who is known to the world as Eminem. While I may not like all of his work, while I may disagree with some personal choices and his use of language and metaphor in some of his work, I can’t deny that the man has amazing talent as a writer and lyricist and that his skill as a rapper makes him an innovator in content, delivery, and overall style.

Now, it may be difficult to imagine me, full-time working suburban mommy of three, cruising between Dunkin Donuts and Target, sipping my iced coffee (skim milk and Equal, still working on that health goal) and bouncing while singing/speaking along to Lose Yourself. But… yeah, it happens. Happening now, as I write this and the song plays on YouTube because I wanted to check the link I’ve given.

This past week, I’ve had some amazing creative highs and lows. While I can’t talk about all of them because they’re still in the very embryonic stage, I can say with full confidence that those opportunities that have come once in a lifetime are staring at me from the doorstep and asking me very politely to be let in. I’ve been accepted to start my PhD at the university where I spend my daytime hours teaching and course-creating and student-scaffolding, and that’s a huge step in further securing the paths that I can take in the realm of higher education. At the same time, I’ve had projects fall through and opportunities to teach for additional financial compensation not materialize. While I got invited to attend a panel for a well-known convention, the financial aspect may keep me from going.

It’s the ups and the downs, but they all represent opportunities. I’ve mentioned the writings of Malcolm Gladwell before, and I’d like to point out another book of his called Outliers. I’d read the book before, but I picked it up again after a conversation with a friend of mine. Reading the book, I reexamined the second chapter and really considered what was said about the characteristic of that sort of person that rises to the top.

An outlier, according to what Gladwell presents, combines talent, opportunity, and time. Talent generally gives way to opportunity, and opportunity gives way to the time necessary to hone the talent and thus create more opportunity. So, not only does the person who rises up and makes success out of that talent require the opportunity, that person also needs to use those opportunities to capitalize on the time that he or she possesses.

I’m choosing to believe that those missed chances or those things that don’t materialize just provide me more time to create and hone those skills (writing and voice acting) so that those opportunities I’ve been given will lead to bigger and better things.

Research from a variety of sources says that most outliers commit 10,000 hours to their areas of expertise before they truly succeed. I’ve got to get moving, then.

This entry was posted on Saturday, June 19th, 2010 at 12:26 pm and is filed under positive change, time management, voiceovers, writing. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

2 Responses to “Snap Back to Reality”

  1. Patrick Says:

    Like that old adage, win some, lose some. 10k hours? really? well then, I could not even begin to imagine what that all means. I have no doubt I have put in a lot of time into creativity, as to how much? I don’t keep track, creation is messy work.

  2. R. Van Saint Says:

    I needed to read this post – I was in a foul mood today, got home and I was just cruising around TCA blogs, and so here I am. I’ve only read the Tipping Point but the Outliers is definitely going to be added to my reading list.

    Congratulations on all your high points, I wish you well in your adventures. Speaking of Eminem – I’d have to agree w/ you, not my cup of tea but he writes well in the platform that he uses and gets his point across, almost fearless in his demeanor. I’d love to get to that point. Easy does it though.

    Got my clock set – see you at the 10k line. =)