Tag Archives: dream big

Because There is No Alternative

Things have been going extraordinarily well, as of late. I’m employed at a fantastic company that I love, with awesome coworkers, good pay, and a real chance at learning and growing. I’m grateful for such an opportunity. My home life is also going pretty well. My lovely oldest younger sister is on a mission for our church and is currently in Utah for training before being sent off to Washington State. It’s super cool. I’m very proud of her. My brother is doing really well for himself, working for a pest control company. What was the first thing he bought? A ton of video games and an epic computer for gaming. My youngest sister is in the grip of mid-high school life, so it’s about as good as it could be for her (rough, but manageable). My parents are happy and my dad might even be able to get off insulin in a year. I might have an opportunity to move out sooner rather than later, and I’m starting up a tiny local business-thing to help me make some extra money. (Don’t worry. It’s not drugs. Yet.) Life is simple and good right now.

So then, why am I feeling so craptastic?

The long answer: I’m halfway into a relationship I don’t know will work, my self-image is crumbling, my health is in decline, I’m still nowhere near to releasing my first film, I’m tired most of the time, I get anxious about the dumbest things, yadda yadda.

The short answer: I’m not perfect.

I know, I know. You can’t be perfect. You can’t expect yourself (or be expected by others) to perform flawlessly and shoot to the top of the ladder at your job, relationship, or whatever else is in your life. You just can’t. To do so causes stress, and for a man who is 24 and has to live at home, that’s a pretty normal. I know, intellectually, that I’m imperfect and that I’m not supposed to be perfect. That said, I know I’m not at my best, that my potential is untapped, that I am nowhere near where I would like to be. It’s rough.

I want to be traveling the world. I want to be making movies. I want to be changing lives. I want to be helping people. I want to be independent. I want, I want, I want, but I don’t have. I’m failing to live up to my own expectations. So I came up with a couple solutions. The first is pretty obvious:

Lower your expectations of yourself.

This tends to be the go-to when I asked for advice on the matter. “You can’t be perfect,” and “you shouldn’t try to do too much,” were common responses. “You need to set lower standards,” was also popular. This might work for you, because your standards might be ridiculous. You might think that you have to raise those four kids, balance a check book, and end world hunger all before 8 in the morning. It’s admirable that you want to do all these things, but it might be a little foolish to try to do it all alone. Which brings me to my second solution:

Try harder.

Maybe your expectations and standards are within reach. You’d probably know better than I would. I personally don’t think my standards are that implausible. I want to live in my own apartment/condo/house, travel to a new place every month (even if it’s just to another city), and make enough money to support myself. It shouldn’t be that hard, yet for some reason it is. In fact, in my experience, this is basically impossible. Why? Because I’m not trying hard enough. I haven’t ever been able to completely focus or devote myself to any one thing – goal or otherwise – without assistance. Or rather, I haven’t forced myself to do so. When the going gets tough, the Tay got going. But that needs to change if I want to reach my goals.

To sum up, there are several roads you can take. You can change your standards, change your course in life, change how hard you work; whatever the case may be. You have the power. And I have the power. Believe.

That not good enough for you? The whole “just be positive” speech doesn’t carry as much thunder once you’ve heard it a dozen times. Allow me to present you with another fact:

Do what you need to do to reach your goal. Do it because there is no alternative. There just isn’t. I got home from a walk in the park a few minutes ago and my dad proceeded to lecture me about my eating habits (which are pretty bad). I’m now officially 70 pounds over my personal weight limit. I have plans to live forever and the gunk in my veins is going to clog up my heart before I get the chance to discover the cure for death. I have to be healthy. It’s no longer an option of “Well, I want abs to looks sexy.” Now it’s “I need to be healthy, or I’m going to die at 30.” There is no alternative. I have no other options.

Neither do you.

You want your life to change? You want to reach your goal? You want to be something more than you are today? Do you want to do something but just can’t find the motivation? Then remember the title of this post. Because you have to do it. You have to. THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE. There’s no backup. There’s no checkpoint. There’s no restart. There’s this. This is it. Do not waste what life and time you have. You have to try. You have to do. Because there is no alternative. Humans have proven their resilience time and time again. It’s proof that you can persevere and do it too. It will be hard. It will seem impossible. But you have to. You have no other choice.

Don’t give up! Don’t give in! And always remember to DREAM BIG!

Filming in Flagstaff

I hate “jobs.” I hate all jobs. I’ve yet to work a job that I can earnestly say “I really like this and can see myself doing this for the rest of my life/for many years to come!” Nope. Not once. Every job I’ve ever had I go “Yup. This is what I know how to do and I do it well.” They’re boring, but that’s not the only reason I hate them.

Jobs are jobs. They give me no sense of accomplishment. I really really thought about it, but I cannot find a single thing it does that makes me feel like I’m doing something worthwhile. Paying bills, being responsible, that’s all wonderful. SO wonderful. But it’s not fulfilling. It’s surviving.

I’m not a survivor. I’m a dreamer.

Do not go gently into that good night! Don’t sit around! Do! DO!

Last weekend, I went up to Flagstaff to film some things for movie that I’m interning on. It was such an amazing experience. I learned more in one day than I did in my 4 months of shooting my own film. I helped take stills, dress the set, talk about shots with my director. What’s amazing was that he actually appreciated what I did, because I just realized as I was typing this that me suggesting things might have been totally been inappropriate for an intern. Urgh. Anxiety.

Regardless, I learned something about myself that day. I will get up at 4:30 with only two hours of sleep and will work my hardest, be professional, and be generally all sorts of awesome AND happy on a film set. Why? How?

It’s something I love. I truly, deeply love filmmaking. I’ve decided that I will find a way to make money doing this. I don’t care what I do, so long as it’s creating movies in some way, shape, or form. It’s what I was born to do.

If you guys have a dream, follow it. You will find happiness beyond your dreams.

Week Recap!

What’s up, my lovely readers? How has your week been? Me? Oh, you know. I quit my job. Put a pause on a friendship. Just the normal stuff.

So at the start of this week (March 23rd), I handed in my two week notice at my current job. My boss is sad to see me go and says I am definitely eligible for rehire, should I need or want to come back. I’m very happy to be leaving on such good terms. One day after that the panic set in. What have I done? I left a stable job for virtually nothing; I had no real prospects in the works. This had to be a mistake. No. No it couldn’t be a mistake. I felt so sure of myself. I needed to leave. I couldn’t stay stagnant any longer.

Maybe the stress got to me, despite my positive attitude. I started another fight with a close friend of mine. He and I get along extremely well when we’re both happy, but if either one of us is in a bad place, we fight like our lives depend on it. It’s childish, but unavoidable. Before any of you say “but if you were more mature, you wouldn’t have this issue” I want to take a good, long look at yourself. I’m sure there are people who have the power to get under your skin no matter how hard you try and resist. If you’re perfect, please share your secret because I’m as imperfect as it gets. Needless to say, the fight carried over to the next day after we went our separate ways and I realized that this was extremely unfair to him and to me. I told him I needed a break and that hopefully we can still be friends. We ended our conversation with “I love you, no matter what” and haven’t spoken since. I mean it’s been less then a week, but it feels like forever.

After detaching myself from any kind of outside influence, I sat down and really thought about my future. Where was I headed? The roads were sprawled out before me and I could traverse any of them. I could go back to my job, out to other similar jobs, stick with my blogging and YouTubing and hope something happened, or any combination therein. But something hit me that hadn’t even occurred to me before: check those Facebook groups I’m a part of. I posted on a couple of these Facebook groups (all of which are dedicated to filmmaking in Arizona) that I was looking for an internship.

20 minutes later, I was offered an internship to work as a production assistant on an upcoming horror film called Carnitas Taco. I’m also going to be casting director and the director’s personal assistant. Carnitas Taco is a feature film that will go beyond regular internet popularity and end up in theaters and on either Showtime Stream or Netflix. Can you imagine?! Four days after putting in my notice, I was offered an internship for something I love more than breathing! It’s so exciting! I’m doing what I love, what I’ve dreamed of doing for years! Sure, I’m not making any money yet, but I’m networking.

THE POWER OF NETWORKING!

Life is changing. I’m moving up in the world, marching forward, and following my heart. I couldn’t be happier. Thanks for reading, guys. You’re all amazing and I’m so happy you’re in my life.

Dream big!

The 9 Aspects of Taylor

The imagination God gave me is ridiculously powerful. This is my disclaimer. I don’t actually believe these entities are real.

I have several inhabitants in my mind. I call them “Aspects” because they are shards of my personality and being. They formed into individuals with their own fully fleshed-out personalities so that I could better understand who I am. I know there are 9 total, but so far, I’ve met only 5 of them.

Peter.

Known only as “Peter”, this Aspect is the personification of my intelligence. Dressed in a suit and tie, wearing huge dark-rimmed classes, and slicking his hair back, Peter is pretty nerdy. He surrounds himself with dusty tomes. He is the keeper of memories, information, and knowledge. Whenever I need to remember something important, I visualize myself putting that thought into a book and handing it to Peter. He then finds a spot on one of the hundreds of shelves in his study and catalogs where it is. Should I need to recall that bit of information, Peter collects it for me. He’s my own personal librarian. Peter used to be a game show host, but has since fallen out of the limelight and taken up research as his primary directive. (It’s uncertain who the new showman is, but he’s in my mind mansion somewhere)

Niklaus.

Niklaus, or just Klaus, made his appearance as the Keeper of Rage when I got really angry about who-knows-what after binge watching The Vampire Diaries. Stern, British, and entirely cruel, Klaus eventually came to consume my vices. Now known as The Vice, Klaus reigns freely as the master of self-control, self-discipline, and self-indulgence. A veritable amalgam of Dorian Gray and Temperance itself, Klaus keeps me and my addictive personality in check by making me savor absolutely everything. He is meditative, calculative, and manipulative; allowing me to indulge in all my vices while maintaining a more than a jot of control over how much I take in. He does this by allowing me to hover over the thing I crave without taking, forcing me to savor the moment before the touch.

Julian Caldwell.

Julian Caldwell, also called The Chancellor, is the wise, the moral, and the motivated. Unyielding in the face of adversity, Julian is able to stick to his guns, his standards, and his plans despite all odds. He is the type of person everyone aspires to be. Trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, cheerful, thrifty, clean, and reverent. Basically what a Boy Scout of America is supposed to be. Julian is a master of his life and when he inhabits my mind, there is nothing I cannot do. Mountains crumble before him, roads appear at his feet, and the deepest darkness tears away to reveal the light I need to get to the other side. Arguably my favorite Aspect, he is also the leader of the group.

Caliel.

Pronounced Call-lee-el, this Aspect takes on the form of a 10 year old boy. He represents my youthful innocence, my magic, my imagination, my power, my muses. He sits on tree branches and ignites the stars above him with a flick of his finger. He is whom I converse with when I need to come up with new ideas. He is extraordinarily imaginative, capable of dreaming up the most vast and expansive scenes and scenarios. And yet, somehow, he is the simplest of all the other Aspects. He is a child, a dreamer, an innocent. His answers always feel like common sense and always intrigue those who over-think things. He doesn’t mince words, or even argue. He provides me with truth and understanding that only come from that child-like soul we all carry in our hearts.

Terrance Thatcher.

Terrance Thatcher is no longer a welcome Aspect in my mind, and yet he finds a way. Terrance, or Terry, represents selfishness, impulsivity, and habits. When a new habit is formed, it is branded on Terry’s being. He is capable of storing hundreds of mental and physical habits from brushing my teeth every morning to self-deprecation after every folly. He does bear some usefulness, but for the most part, he is a negative, life-sucking, joy-killing fiend. Whenever I am having a horrible day, I blame it on Terry. And frankly, it usually is actually his fault.

So there you have the first 5 Aspects of Taylor. I hope you enjoyed reading them. One day, I will transcribe some of the conversations I have with and as them. They’re quite funny and insightful. I hope to eventually turn them into cards that I can carry around with me. Any artists out there who may be interested, please contact me.

Remember, if you’re going to dream, dream BIG!

What Goes Down Must Come Up!

Somewhere in high school, I obtained this strange notion that “no one loved me” and that “I didn’t deserve love” and so on. These small feelings grew and consumed me. Much of my teen years were spent lost in doodling and drawing comics to avoid the pain of reality. As I matured into an adult, these feelings were only magnified. Who was I? Where am I going? What am I doing with myself? Life now stood before me and I was unprepared to take it by storm. Why? Because I had locked it out of my mind during my teen years.

So, what brings this up Taydebear?” you ask. Well, dearest reader, allow me to tell you:

Tonight I was a jerk. I am frequently inconsiderate, but not as bad as I was tonight. Wielding the personality of a turd, I refused to become uplifted by the kindness and generosity of a dear friend. Why? Because I’m stressed. What does that have to do with anything? Everything. Like the Fairies of Neverland, I’m so small that I can only feel one emotion at a time. When I feel it, it’s all consuming. Be this joy, pain, love, hate, or (like it has been for the last two months) STRESS. Stress. What a nasty word. I won’t go into what I did exactly, but let me tell you this: I was mean, downright rude, and inconsiderate to a person who has literally done me no wrong since the moment I met him. I cannot think of a time where he has done anything deliberately or otherwise to hurt or offend me, despite the countless times I have done so to him. I realized this at dinner, which is why I didn’t order anything. I was afraid that if I allowed myself to enjoy the kindness he was offering, I would lose it.

He dropped me off after a painfully long and silent car ride, during which I wanted to scream at him: “I’M SORRY! I’M BEING A DINGUS!” But alas, no such words escaped my gaping noise void. If they had, I would have unleashed all the emotional stress I had been building up over the last two to three months. We pulled up to my house and I got out with a quick “Goodnight” and walked around to the back of the house. I hadn’t even gone through the back gate before I started to feel overwhelmingly sad. I spent the next half hour bawling my eyes out behind my house. I fell into a dark place that I haven’t been in in several years. It was so real, so unnerving. My dad found me and we hugged. He, my mom, and I all sat down in their room and talked long and hard about what I’m dealing with.

I told them my worries, my griefs, and my pains. After I got it all out, they offered comfort, tough love, and genuine compassion. They assured me that they weren’t going anywhere, that they’d help me through whatever this nonsense is. My goal to move out is still soon, but maybe not so far as originally intended. We are doing this as a team. Those are my parents. They love their children unconditionally. They give and give and give, hoping to help me grow. They may not have done a perfect job, but they did all they could, and by golly… It’s enough for me.

As to the man I spoke of earlier. I did text him back and apologize. Profusely. And while I feel he has forgiven most of my stupidity, he still hurts from the things I said and did. I must address this man and his character, as I feel I have not captured the truth behind this individual…

This man, who shall remain nameless, might not know what he means to me. (Don’t get your undies in a twist or anything. I’m not talking romantically. Weirdos) He is the kind of person that I met at my brightest time, and he shined brightly with me. We took the world and all its woes in our stride and we have both grown in many ways since we first met. It’s been inspiring to watch his transformation. This man, time and time again, has proven that when he says he wants me to be happy, he means it. This goes back to the beginning… I didn’t deserve love. Especially right now. I behaved like an uncultured swine. Some village somewhere had lost their idiot. It was profoundly disappointing. My behavior, short and simple, was unacceptable. As an adult, as a human being. And yet… even now… He still cares for me. How? Why? I don’t understand. I can’t understand. I mean, sure, I love everybody I come into contact with. I even love those really annoying customers who yell at me for doing my job. I mean, I don’t THANK them for that, but still. We’re all family, right? But why me? What did I do to deserve it?

I don’t know, but dang… I’m sure glad I did it. Mom and Dad and I are working on getting me some professional help. We’re seeking a good doctor who will give me some perspective and maybe some meds. And I’m so excited! Guys! I’m going to be sane soon! The good kind of sane! There’s this stupid stigma with mental illness and such, but people need to get over themselves, admit they have some issues, and go work on them. I told y’all this was the year of the Tay! I am going to rise up to the challenge. I’m going to be living in a new place, with a new job(s), starting my career, building my company, finishing my movie, and hey, maybe – HOPEFULLY – making the world a better place. I know I can do this. I know I can conquer this, or at the very least, I can learn to handle it. You guys have no idea what you’re all capable of.

Be brave, my lovely, powerful readers. Be strong. Life is going to be hard. Life is going to have some sucky moments. But there are people out there who love you, no matter what. And love you, no matter what.

Remember: what goes down must come up. And if you’re going to dream, dream BIG!