What do you do that you never got permission to do?
I'm a huge fan and instigator of doing things whether you were told you could do them or not.
When I wanted to put on sketch comedy shows, I didn't wait for permission. I just did it. In jobs when I decide that I want to provide leadership, I don't wait for someone to put me in a leadership position, I just do it.
I let the titles and the people in charge catch up to me. Basically, I make it a no-brainer that they should give me that promotion or continue booking my sketch group for shows.
I don't think it's because I'm better than anyone else, instead it's just that I don't care about failing. At least with those things. When it comes to art, however, I am definitely more afraid of failing or being judged as awful.
There's something that great artists or comedians or actors say that I've always found interesting. They like to say that they "never had a choice" or "I don't know how to do anything else." They weren't given permission to become artists. They just create because it's what they feel compelled to do and eventually, they'll get good enough for other people to catch up to them and become fans. They go through a period of failure, just like anyone learning anything does, but it's that need that keeps them going.
I find this interesting because when it comes to art, I have never felt this way. When it comes to comedy, I've never felt this way. Today, after reading some Seth Godin, I began thinking of areas where I do feel this way.
For me leadership is not a choice, it's just a natural progression, and I don't care if permission was granted or not. I consider myself a decent leader. Not great, not terrible. But, I don't care what people think about me, because I know I will become great someday. Another area that's not a choice, but something I just do is I cook for people. Again, I'm not the best cook or the worst cook. But, I love it.
Ever since I was a kid, I'd wake up early (usually first) and I'd make breakfast for everyone. When I stayed at other people's houses, I did this. I made coffee. I made pancakes, bacon, eggs, whatever. Now that I'm older and people come over to my house, I cook for them.
It's service and my main love language is service, so it makes sense.
In a way, leadership is also about service. I lead because I feel like other people aren't going to, (and I don't mean that in a judgmental way) and because I feel like it's an area that I am good enough at. I feel like it would be a disservice (see what I did there?) to myself and to those around me if I didn't do it.
(I didn't mean for this post to become about linking to the 5 Love Languages, but it appears as though that's what's going to happen as I write. Which is one of the reasons I love writing; exploration)
I wonder if most creatives - or artists - have the Love Language of 'giving and receiving gifts.'
Because truly what they are doing is providing a gift to the world through their work. And maybe that's why they feel drawn (so many puns) to this type of life and purpose.
Not sure if this line of thinking has any merit, but... maybe.