Everyone is happy with a finished product. If I paint a house, and it looks great, I am going to be happy with myself. When I write a paper for an English class, and I get a good grade on it, I am going to be happy with myself. But is it always the end results that makes everything worth while? I don’t think so. I believe it is the journey that makes everything worth while. The path you take is something to be admired and looked on with a sense of accomplishment. Sure I can be happy about things that come easy to me, but I am going to be more proud of myself if I have to work at it and spend more time on it. A short journey usually goes hand-in-hand with effortlessness or lazy actions. Say I am an actor in a play, and I take the time to read every line, analyze every word, and examine every character. I am going to know the play inside and out, and I am probably going to be able to perform at a higher level. Higher than the person sitting next to me, who didn’t go above and beyond in their prep time. I think of it as, if you don’t put your heart into it from the beginning, how is the end going to be any good. A wise man once said that you should rehearse like you perform. Do you think I would go in front of an audience giving less than my all, so why would I in rehearsal? It would be ridiculous to go into a rehearsal for a play and give only about 50 percent. That doesn’t only affect the way my end result will be, but it also affects everyone else who has to work with me. If I don’t work hard during rehearsals how will I ever get better? I can’t just walk into opening night’s performance unprepared and expect myself to be great. That would be foolish. I wouldn’t know my own potential and I would be acting no where near my peak. My director always makes us do relaxation exercises before me start each rehearsal, release all the tension in our bodies and focus only on the task at hand: enhancing the production. He tells us to leave our stress at the door and focus only on doing our best to make it a great rehearsal. Everything done in rehearsal is done for a reason and all aspects of hard work add up to be a great accomplishment. If I am assigned to make a balcony to be used in a show, I am not just going to put it together in an hour and call it done. I am going to work my hardest with the time I am given, and do my best to make it the greatest balcony my director has ever seen. A sense of accomplishment will then come when people tell me how great it worked, and how awesome it looked. I believe the end result only feels good, if everything leading up to it was the best it could have been.
This I Believe
June 1, 2008