By now many of you have seen (or at least have heard of) Beyonce’s Homecoming documentary film on Netflix. If you haven’t seen it, you should. And yes, I am actually suggesting you take a moment to watch Netflix. Beyonce’s Homecoming is an in your face wake up call to many of us, and I highly recommend you view it. [Disclaimer: There are a few unnecessary curse words in the movie but that should not deter you from the messages Mrs. Carter and her excellent production company brought to the screen.] Here are my three takeaways from this film…
Message #1: Last year Beyonce was the first black female to headline Coachella. Many in attendance hailed her performance as the best at Coachella ever and crowned it one of her highest achievements. Now a year later, those of use who did not make the trip to California are seeing the performance from the comfort of our sofas and private bathrooms, and more importantly, we are also getting a chance to view what all happened behind the scenes.
Releasing the documentary during this year’s Coachella season is a brilliant marketing idea and waiting to show us the work that went into the project makes sense. Sometimes you have to do what’s necessary behind the scenes without anyone and everyone in your business. We do not need to constantly broadcast what we are working on and who we are trying to become. Luvvie Ajayie, a New York Times best selling author, is known for saying that “real G’s move in silence.” I fully agree! There are definitely times when pursuing our goals necessitates proceeding without everyone knowing and talking. The world is filled with opinions and naysayers, and though the counsel of the wise is important, wisdom is not a trait equally possessed by all. When you are attempting to do something that has never been done or striving to take your life in a whole new trajectory, there will be those who will not understand or support it. Stay on course, do get wise counsel if you need it, and then move in silence until it is time to say something.
Message #2: Beyonce did it even when it was uncomfortable. Having had c-sections myself, I physically felt pain watching her practice after having the twins. To me it was clear as day, as her face showed the physical discomfort, exhaustion and doubt from her exertion. I am not suggesting that we should all do exactly as she did [I am not even sure I could physically do it]. What I am saying is that our fears of being uncomfortable can often limit our growth and development. If we run for the hills—or worst yet, run back to what was comfortable—whenever things get hard, then how will we develop and move to the next stage? When potential clients approach me with their goals, I tell them the truth…it is going to take work and work isn’t sexy. Though Coachella fans got to see Beyonce’s beautifully coordinated performance, the viewers of Homecoming saw more. They saw her struggling and growing through the process. They heard her speak of all the sacrifices from restriction eating to time away from her children. They saw the sweat…the fatigue…the unglamourous…the lack of make up. They saw the months of being uncomfortable and the months of working hard…which now takes us to the final point.
Message #3: It took at least 8 months of preparation to put on a 2 hour show. I say “at least” because before the 8 months captured in the movie, there had to be conversations, negotiations and interactions between agents, organizers, managers, legal units and Beyonce herself [as she plays a very active role in her career]. Quick question, how active a role do you play in your life? Are you a lead or just a supportive character in your own story? The Homecoming movie showed the work behind the scenes. There were no Instagram photo shoots. It did not show her living it up at spas, clubs and restaurants. The video showed time and preparation.
Everyone wants to be seen as a success, but are you willing to put in the work? To get your 2-hours of shine are you prepared to sacrifice 8+ months of effort and grind? Dedicating the time and resources to make your dreams become a reality is not easy. You have to make sacrifices while fighting with self-doubt and exhaustion…and those are just what attack you on a good day. There will be days, weeks or months when nothing goes right and you will want to give up. There will be moments when no one understands your dedication and you don’t feel supported. So, are you willing to put in your 8 to get your 2? Are you willing to have people accuse you of changing? Are you willing to miss out on the fun? Are you willing to go without for 8 just to get your 2? Can you withstand 8 levels of ridicule, doubt, fear, lack, work, loneliness, sacrifice, and discomfort so you can then have your 2 hours? Or do you think your dreams and goals are not worth it? I can tell you…mine are totally worth it!
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