WHAT IS SUCCESS?
Everyone has said it "I wanna be successful" but what does this mean? Does it mean having a million dollars? Does it mean making a feature film? Does it mean owning a place in LA and NYC? As humans we always associate success with money or some sort of huge bank account. Why is that? Of course if you make a lot off of your business you definitely are doing something right, but I'm not talking about those people. What about people who win the lottery or someone who inherits money from their family? They have money so doesn't that mean they are successful? Not quite.
SUCCESS VS GREED
As a CEO/Filmmaker/Visual Artist I wear a lot of hats in the industry. When I was 18 and 19 I wanted all of my different ventures to be successful. Looking back, I don't think I knew what that meant. I assumed if I made a ton of money I would be successful and everything would be perfect. That's all I focused on, Money Money Money Money. I just turned 21 a few days ago and on my birthday I had the worst anxiety attack thinking about that I'm not where I wanna be. I kept telling myself "You haven't done shit yet and you are already 21, get it together". When I was 19 and in college I thought I would be a millionaire by 21 and living the good life. After talking to multiple mentors and just reflecting on life I realized it wasn't success I wanted, it was money. I wanted my bank account to have 8 figures and I knew that would make me happy. This was greed speaking, not the success mindset I had when I first started this career path back in high school. Something was off, I went off the path I was on when I first started.
YOUR WORK > YOUR BANK ACCOUNT
Whenever I think back to when I lived in Chicago I was doing alright. I had a GH4 and was networking like crazy on video shoots. I was happy only making $500-$700 on videos because I was having fun. My creativity was all over the place and I was making every client I worked with very happy. Within this past year I've owned 3 RED's and just focused on getting money, not a bad idea (But I wasn't happy). I kept going back and forth between my old work and seeing comments of people loving the work and supporting it and everything clicked. Your bank account means nothing if your work isn't progressing every year. You can be the greediest asshole and just make mediocre work for the rest of your life but once you get to the end of your life you don't have anything to show. The money is just temporary but the work is always gonna be there. Ever since than I've focused on my work instead of how much money would make me happy. If you focus on making high quality work, the client base will keep growing and the money will be a nice add on to what your are making
WHAT DOES THIS ALL MEAN?
I'm not saying you should go broke and just focus on work, But put the money aspect of your business in the backseat. I've seen way too many people be greedy and let their work suffer in the process. Think about it: If you died today would you want your work or bank account to be remembered? Money is cool and I love making it just as anyone else but I'd rather be remembered from what I create. Go out everyday and do/make something you can be proud of. Life is too short to be greedy.