I love my job. I get to see students — who have a massive desire and passion to tackle their challenges internally and externally — make their dreams come to life. Not everyone succeeds, yet there are common threads that tie those who do together.
Here are six key areas of personal development I’ve seen in those who succeed as animators:
- Be humble. Attitude plays a MAJOR role in your success. Who wants to work with a jerk? I don’t, and I’m sure you don’t. This does not mean that you need to let someone walk all over you, either. Build confidence in who you are, share your thoughts, and respect those of others. Remember, there’s more than your way to tackle a challenge.
- Be thirsty. I LOVE this one. It’s also been called “the beginner’s mind.” At Animation Mentor, we call this Continuous Improvement and it’s one of our core values. Never feel like you have “arrived.” There’s always more to learn. When you get stuck, look for ways to pivot your thinking and you will find renewed inspiration.
- Share everything you know. There’s a famous quote that states, “It is in giving that we receive.” I really love this and find it so applicable. Those who give comments and share their knowledge are those who seem to accelerate quicker. Those who hoard information only go so far. When you learn something that accelerates your skills — share that knowledge. You’ll be surprised at what comes of it.
- Never give up. Don’t lose focus, it’s just a matter of time. This may be easier said than done, yet remember that you cannot ever stop learning, practicing, and growing. Be sure to water your mind and feed it goodness whenever possible.
- Beware of the “gremlin voice.” Most likely, there will always be a "gremlin voice" in our heads that expresses our insecurities — and most likely, there’s no way to ever fully turn off that voice. So think about "turning the volume down." If it's blaring at 10 max, then what would it be like to turn it down to a 5? Or even a 7? Over time, learn to identify the voice and slowly begin to turn it down.
- Nurture balance. The life of an animator should not be all about the latest animated movie. Those who succeed have a passion for life just as much, or more, than they do for animation. Be sure to cultivate YOU.
These six little things could take a lifetime to nurture. Which one are you going to tackle today? Think about it, get inspired … and I look forward to hearing your thoughts and comments below!
-Bobby "Boom" Beck