Shoot Your Shot
Photo: Merie W. Wallace (HBO)
Picture it...You’re standing in front of a club, having an awkward, slightly demoralizing conversation with a bouncer who’s not particularly familiar with your brand of whatever your brand is. Your adorable, and gregarious plus one is doing her best to sweet talk the situation and get y’all both in, when an old acquaintance from around the way walks up with his entourage. You two weren’t necessarily BFF’s, but since then, he’s become a successful, well-known entertainer and here you are, beholden to a bouncer.
Does this sound familiar????
The lesson here is: Don’t be Daniel!
We caught the last episode of Insecure, which often teaches us lessons through the characters interactions and struggles with emotional maturity.
When the opportunity presents itself to make a new connection that could advance your personal or professional ambitions, ask yourself, “Why not...Shoot my shot??”
You can make up a million reasons why not, but how about just believing in the million reasons why instead???
We saw Daniel’s challenge to articulate his value to an artist he admires and sees as a potential collaborative partner. But his struggles started long before he got to meet Debo’s little brother at the door.
First he didn’t have the cojones to go it alone after his homeboy backed out. Then he played himself at the door with an obviously, ego-driven display. “We got tables....” HA!!
Then, after being almost too slow to pick up on non-verbal queues, he finally gets the opportunity to speak to the one person he went to the club to see. His stuttering, anxiety and ego kept him from stepping into his greatness. In that moment, we all recognized that instance in our own lives that we might have let a life changing connection slip through our fingertips. Carrying so many regrets, resentment for what could have been, what if...if only...well, if if was a fifth. Then maybe it would have been at Daniel’s invisible tables.
Being outspoken, extroverted and charming a room isn’t everyone’s thing. That’s fine. But if you’re introverted that doesn’t mean you can’t be great and take a swing at the plate! If you get nervous, have anxiety, afraid of rejection, then congratulations! You’re one of us!
The goal isn’t to deny that these emotions and feelings don’t exist or have an impact on the way we live our lives. Developing coping mechanisms that help you overcome moments where self-doubt and worry impede your progress. Take a deep breath. Crack your knuckles. Say a Hail Aretha. And leap. Trust that your net will appear.
The Hindenburg was less of a disaster than that conversation in the club and if there’s one thing to glean from Daniel’s foibles, it’s that you’re going to miss all of the shots you don’t take. But you’re gonna make some, even if it’s just one, make it count. Be humble, know your value, and SHOOT!
A week ago, we found ourselves in Los Angeles, standing in a room full of extremely talented, accomplished and well connected people. A couple of days later, we were reconnecting and solidifying relationships with the intentions of spreading laughter, inspiration and reflection. It’s what we do. Remember?
We are all born and blessed with talents and the ability to be a light in someone’s life. Knowing what your value is and how you can be of service let’s others know they can trust you because you won’t be looking for some way to be opportunistic. People who know their value live with integrity and generally speaking look for ways in which their resources can provide for others. The kind of people who will always be welcome because they make everyone feel like they have value. Taking advantage of an opportunity doesn’t automatically make someone opportunistic. Taking advantage of people when they give you opportunities makes you an opportunist.
So don’t do be that person and you’re all good!