I’ve spent the past several months in Los Angeles, pitching TV show concepts and shopping my screenplays around to various networks. I’ve met a ton of Hollywood peeps. It seems like – at every corner – someone is eager to give me some “advice.”
Don’t do this. Don’t do that. Never say such-and-such to so-and-so. OMG, you’ll get blacklisted! You’ll kill your career if you blah-dee-blah. They ONLY want doodle-doo this season. Diddle-dee is so OUT.
And on and on and on.
I have no doubt these folks are well-meaning, trying to sprinkle some wisdom into my ear-holes based on what they’ve heard. But most of the advice I’ve been hearing didn’t feel “right” for me or my projects – and the deluge was starting to make me feel crazy.
Fortunately, a mentor of mine here in LA – who happens to be a working, successful showrunner – told me to “earmuff” it when it comes to listening to advice.
Put on your earmuffs.
Meaning: Block out the noise and just trust your instincts.
Best advice ever.
I started earmuffin’ it all around town and I lined up some incredible opportunities. Each opportunity arose because I did something that I was specifically advised NOT to do. (Go figure.)
At some point, if you listen to all the advice on “what not to do,” you run out of things TO ACTUALLY DO. At some point or another, you’ve got to say, “Earmuffs: ON!” and discern your next move on your own.
I know this advice – ”Put on your earmuffs! Block out advice!” – may sound counter-intuitive, since I dole out “advice” through this newsletter every single week. I love dishing out advice on sales, publicity, marketing, connecting, and building a fanatical client/customer base that’s obsessed with you – and I feel qualified to dish out advice on those topics because I’ve been working in the publicity/biz world for the past 15 years in a corporate setting, agency setting, and as the founder of my own business. I’ve seen my advice “work” for multiple hundreds of clients who have shifted from “struggling” and “ignored” to “booking clients/selling products consistently.” I can say, pretty damn confidently, that I know what I’m talking about.
BUT all of that being said… if you ever read something from me (or any other “expert”) that makes you think, “Hmm, interesting advice, but that’s just not for me…” then your inner-GPS trumps all “outside” advice. Listen to your gut.
We all have different business/career journeys. Different goals. Movements. Missions. Lifestyle preferences. Income goals. Passions and pleasures.
No one can advise you on the exact “right way” to go about your journey.
Sometimes you just have to “earmuff” it and do what feels right… for you.