So, I recently watched (and then rewatched) Bo Burnham’s “what.” – which I’ll refer to as a comedy special, even though his performance was that and so much more. Look him up on YouTube if you aren’t easily offended. And even if you are… get over it for a few minutes. He’s a breath of fresh air and brings me great joy, even on dark days.

Point is, his final segment is incredibly inspiring to me:

Hopefully, you watched the video.

Anyway. I have this problem a lot with random friends, acquaintances, family, etc. Whenever stuff is going right in my life – i.e. New article/photo published, new interview, I mention filming, or they see a new profile pic of me and a celebrity… and BAM! Suddenly, I have a whole group of people come out of the woodwork that are suddenly my BFFs and closest of close family members, when 90% NEVER TALK TO ME EVER. 80% I’m pretty sure have never even LIKED me. Friends of a friend’s friend are suddenly messaging me like I’ve known them for years. While I am not opposed to new friends, I don’t appreciate the awkwardness of one you can just tell from the start isn’t genuine. Especially if the conversation drifts to…:

So, I saw that picture of you and [insert celebrity/author/artist/whatever here], and I’m a huuuuge fan, could you introduce us?”

You’re drawings are amazing! Would you draw me [insert random picture here]? What’s a commission? You mean you’d charge a FRIEND?” (Mind you, there are friends and instances I AM fine with this. But those are my long term friends, or people I wanted to draw anyway, etc.)

I heard you’re trying to get a book published! You should give me a copy when it comes out!” (Yes, because what I really want to do when I’m trying to make a living off of my writing is give people I never talk to free copies. Sheesh.)

You can use me as a model, because I totally would love to have some shots taken… But none of that weird stuff. Like, I want some normal pictures. What do you mean you want paid for that?!” (Unless I find your face or the project we’d be working on together incredibly beneficial to my photography portfolio, it’s not too likely that I’m going to take some free pictures for you. I need to be able to make at least enough to cover the gas I used to get to the shoot. Otherwise, what’s the point?)

And really, I could just keep going on and on and on…

BelowYou

The point is, I’m not one above helping people out. I am fairly reasonable and usually can work something out with people when I know their financial situation may be a little strained or something. I’m also a fairly big fan of exchange – for a small favor or assistance in something, I’m usually willing to work out something. But I can’t give everything away all the time. I would defeat the purpose of creating things to make a living. This is probably a good chunk of the reasoning behind why I’m still working my mind-numbing day job.

But people will always think they know you. People that want something from you. People that are jealous and want to drag you down. People will always try to change you and mold you to best suit their needs. And you know what? Let them try. The people that matter know who YOU are. The friends and family that have stuck by your side even when it was hard, those are the people you can count on.

Let the right people in, and clear out the toxic influences in your life. Use the negativity and stress to fuel your motivation to move forward, instead of letting it hold you back. And I beg you, plead with you —

Don’t let success get to your head, or failure get to your heart.

~Angel

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Comments
  1. Sheila says:

    “But people will always think they know you. People that want something from you. People that are jealous and want to drag you down. People will always try to change you and mold you to best suit their needs. And you know what? Let them try. The people that matter know who YOU are.”

    Angel, I am so glad you know this and I am so very proud of you!

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