One of my Controlling Stage Mother soul suckers has always pushed me to work hard.
She said, “YOU’RE not enough. But MAYBE if you try 10, 20, 100, 1000, 100,000,000 times as hard, you can make up for it.”
At times, I fell victim to her threatening tone and belittling messages.
(Sometimes I pretended to work hard, even when I wasn’t, so I wouldn’t get judged or fired.)
All that hard work didn’t manage to quiet the mean girl inside of me. Instead she got louder.
I suffered from headaches. I got sick a lot.
Finally, in my late twenties I was rehearsing a play while sick with a horrible flu, two days before the show opened. I had nothing extra to give.
I could not push.
I could not force.
I could not grasp.
All I could do was be present, listen, and respond.
Even though I was sick as a dog, there was a sense of ease and grace. I felt like I was riding a wave of creative energy, rather than working hard.
When we finished the run-through, I thought for certain it was horrible. How could it possibly be any good without the hard work?
The director looked me in the eyes and said, “You were amazing today.”
I was stunned.
I now know, sometimes hard work is just resistance in disguise.
When we release the resistance and the extra work, we open to true creative flow – which is full of ease, grace, and trust.
Now that’s magical. ✨