I got notice a couple of days ago that my screenplay was not chosen as a semi-finalist for the Austin Film Festival.  Bummer?  Yes.  But the first rejection notice was hardest to take, when my dreams of a personal handwritten letter arriving in the mail declaring my brilliance and hutzpah and handing over a fat and lovely check were dashed.  Anything now, is just another voice saying "no thanks".  No big deal.  And after all, they did weed out from 8,600 submissions down to 80, so I can't feel too awful.  In my heart, I feel this story and this script is good.  And after some time, I'll take another look at it, tighten it up a little and make some changes, but in the meantime?  I feel good.  And there are other competitions to which the script is currently submitted, so there's always hope.

I got some good news today, and I'm pretty excited about it I have to say.  Not ready to discuss it yet, but when I am you will be one of the many to know.

I refilled my meds yesterday, after having gone without for awhile.  I was concerned about the cost and so I let fear eat away, and a month go by, and what a mistake it was, because when I did some investigating, it was so much cheaper than I could have imagined, and so worth it if it means keeping my emotions a little more in perspective and has me asking myself, "what was all the worry for?"

I worry a lot.  Admittedly.  I think we all do to one degree or another.  Give us a mystery like "why hasn't he called today?" or why haven't I heard back from that job" and we will fill it in with the most negative story.  We can do it about our futures too, at least I do, or have in the past.  Something happens, something that leads to a question or concern I can't answer myself and it's tempting to fill myself up with thoughts of "what if".  Not happy little inspirational "what ifs", but why even bother trying type of "what ifs".  "Why bother checking into it as it's gonna cost to get that taken care of  because you probably can't afford it?"  "Why bother auditioning for this part, because you know the usual suspects will be at the audition and will probably get it before you, and you're not exactly what the character breakdown calls for?"  "Why bother submitting for this job because it probably doesn't pay what you are needing..." the list goes on.  Truth is, what does it hurt to check it out?  Really, what's the emotional risk if I do, and what's the real risk if I don't?  I almost always realize after the fact that I was worried about nothing, and when I had cause to worry?  When things didn't turn out just like I wanted them to? 

Carolyn Myss, author of one of my favorite books Sacred Contracts says that if we feel that pull, that inner tug toward something, we need to really evaluate and think before we ignore it.  Because that pull is God energy.  And the outcome?  Maybe it's not that you're supposed to get the job, but that you are supposed to make a connection on the way, keep a metaphysical appointment to affect a life, have an epiphany that will be triggered by the following of these voices.  And besides, all this worry can just lead to self fulfilling prophecies and blow things out of proportion not just in your mind, but in the physical world.  So when is worry ever justified? 

I sometimes think that fear comes in handy and is productive when I'm prepping for something, like an audition.  There are times that fear of failure has driven me to discipline myself, but even then it is very tricky and takes a lot of balancing to make sure that I'm managing the worry and the worry isn't managing me, throwing me into the panic mode wherein I decide it will never be good enough and I shouldn't even bother. 

Worry can become an addiction.  People become entranced with what they see as the virtues of worry.  They think that it some how shows people how dedicated they are that they worry so.  They think it means that they care more than others.  But no one ever seeing you pitch a fit and get upset at yourself as you all work together on a common cause (like a play) is ever going to see you freak out about a missed step or line and think you care more about your craft, the show, the success of the company than they do.  That shit doesn't compute.  It just doesn't enter their mind.  They'll just think you're crazy.   

Best to avoid worry altogether.  And I think it's possible.  It's not easy at first.  It takes a lot of muscle work and determination, and presence of mind until it can become a habit, ingrained.  But every time I do it well it gives me more confidence that I can do it again in the future, and listen to the voice pulling me to say the proverbial "yes", and take a step in that direction. 
Joe Hartman