I sometimes make stupid decisions. It sounds good at the time, but as the decision rolls out, my better judgement is challenged.
Years ago as a drama teacher. I would come up with an idea and pass it by my Fine Arts Department Head.
“Hey there Greg, I am thinking of writing a Comedia del’Arte show.”
“I am thinking of touring it.”
“I am thinking of building portable sets that we can take with us and I have some contacts in Cranbrook and they are willing to give us some money to get over there and I am thinking of applying for some funding to get the rest of the money to go there.”
“You can’t do that!”
He would say, “You can’t do that!” and then he would immediately make plans and we would go full steam ahead and he would make sure it happened. I can’t tell you how many times he would help me with a crazy idea, spend countless of hours planning and working on an idea that was not his own and then see it to its end.
It was early days in my teaching career, and this seasoned, hard working art teacher and department head, spent a great deal of time mentoring me. He gifted me with his skill, with his energy and his time. A whole pile of his time.
He may have said “you can’t” but he never stopped there. He would find a way to make it happen. He gave me his presence. And his presence said, “I am going to help you make this happen, because I believe it CAN happen.” He may have preferred I stick with a traditional approach, but he never insisted on it. He helped me with my vision. I was so lucky to have someone early in my career mentor me in such a profound way. He gave me the experience and practice of seeing artistic visions come to fruition. He gave me the practice of taking public risks and experiencing success. Wow! Who gets that early in their career? I aspire to be Greg to those around me, but I know I fall far short of my role model.
Who is your Greg? Who is the person in your life that champions your passion? Maybe, you and I can work together to be that amazing presence for someone around us. Let’s pick one person to mentor. Let’s help one person unfold their dream, their story, their passion and let’s see what happens.