Sometimes, it’s important to start at the very beginning. Before you can Do the thing! you have to want the thing, and once you want the thing, you have to be able to admit it to yourself and other people.
Why? You gotta know your own goals in order to pursue them. And it’s murder to network in an effective way if you don’t feel comfortable and confident in being able to articulate what your ask is and what you bring to the table in response to it.
There are all sorts of reasons saying what we want is hard. When I was a child, and my parents asked me what I wanted for holidays gifts, I would answer, only to be told I didn’t really want those things. After all, they were so trendy, or aesthetically displeasing, surely I knew better than to have desires like that. In high school, if I expressed attraction to someone, the response was always, but don’t you know they’re out of your league?
Over time, the message was simple. I didn’t know how to make good choices, and the things I wanted were unreasonable and should not be expressed. Chances are, you got messages like this too, along with messages that if you express a goal that you don’t achieve, then you look like a failure and that’s embarrassing, as opposed to a brave, ambitious person who is going after their goals.
But saying what we want is important. It’s powerful. It tells us we can pursue our own destiny. It tells us we don’t need permission. It tells us we are worthy of ambition. It tells us what we want is possible. It tells us desire is not a sin. It tells us we can make stuff happen.
And when we’re women, or queer, or otherwise marginalized (and the vast majority of the readers of this blog are at least one of those things), we need to hear that. For ourselves, and to help other people get the courage to say I want.
So here are my easy I want statements: I want the contracts I am currently waiting on to show up in my email. I want yes on the other things I have out for submission. I want a yes on the things going out soon for submission. And I want a glorious team of rivals with which to make shit happen.
Here’s my hard to say out loud, even though it’s no secret, I want statement: I want to write for TV.
What do you want? Say it right now. Get used to that desire, enjoy that desire, and use that desire. Need a place to say it? Comments are open. Do the thing.