I'm in still in a metaphorical crucible right now. I was having lunch with a friend and former colleague of mine and it dawned on me this stage in my career is what I'll later consider to be the dark times. But there's no way around it. I have to go through this to get where I wanna be.
This isn't complaining, it's just an acknowledgement of how much more I have to experience and learn. It's not like I'm a baby to this industry either. I've been working for years and years. But it really just takes that long, or it can, depending on luck.
The thing that I'm "waiting" for is when I'm at a level in both skill and presence where I don't have to struggle so hard each day to work on the kind of projects that satisfy my heart. More than anything, I just want to work on meaningful projects. And high quality ones too.
The following may sound braggadocious, but believe me, it's not. I sometimes wonder what it would be like not to care so much about the stuff I work on. Maybe I would be happier overall? While passion has its benefits, I think that the negatives should be discussed too. Here's how I break it down: Passion means that you want things to be a certain way, you want them to be what you envision. This means that you have expectations about how things should unfold, and therefore happiness is conditional. And when situations don't fit this, frustration naturally arises. In my experience so far, it has been very difficult for me not to be affected by this sequence. Passion is a double edged sword. That said, I'm grateful for it.
My new thought this week is that each hardship I endure (of varying degrees of pain) is toughening me up. I've noticed that I can better handle things that used to cause me a lot of stress years ago. Every embarrassment, failure and mistake I make create opportunities to learn. So as long as I keep at it and continue to work hard, things should get easier.
Or so I hope.