All the World Is a Stage


As I catch up from being in Washington, D.C., the past two days doing training, I’m sharing one of my favorite blogs that you may have missed.

Imagine that you are an actor on stage in front of an audience. You reach for a prop that is key to the script and it’s not there.

To keep the audience from knowing that a mistake has been made, you ad-lib a line that lets the backstage crew know what is amiss. Instantly, they jump into action to find a creative way to get that object seamlessly to you. Perhaps the next performer to come onstage will ad-lib a reason for carrying it on, or a new character will appear delivering the item.

You don’t know how that item will get on stage, but you know that the crew is bringing it to you as quickly as possible. In the meantime, it’s your job to keep the story going and work with what you have until it gets there. You also have to be ready to respond to the new situation so that the scene makes sense and the audience remains oblivious to the change in the story.

This is a little like life.

Imagine that we are all actors on a stage in front of an audience. Only we have no time between sets or performances to reset the stage and put the necessary props in place. The Universal Stagehands are ready and able to bring us everything we need to keep the performance going, but they must stay out of sight.

Sometimes what we ask for doesn’t make sense for the storyline of the play, or will take some creative means to appear in a way that seems natural and seamless to the audience.

For example, you may want to lose weight, but you want it to happen instantly. An overnight loss of 30 pounds would not be seamless and seem natural. In fact, even if that desire was granted, after the first blush of excitement faded and as people exclaimed at the radical transformation, you would probably begin to worry. You might go to the doctor to determine if something was wrong. It might end up being a greater cause of concern than a gift because it wouldn’t even seem natural or logical to you.

You didn’t gain weight overnight and it doesn’t fit the story line that you will lose it overnight.

So it’s your job to ask for it and know that it is coming. In the meantime, you have to work with what you have until the requested item, person, or situation gets there. And until it does, you have to be ready to respond to the new and creative scenes that are developing in the storyline to bring you what you have asked for.

What messes so many Life Actors up is that they don’t believe the Universal Stagehands are on it and are doing their best to bring them what they want.

Instead, they stand in the middle of the performance and demand that thing. They tell the audience they can’t move forward without that thing. They draw the audience’s attention to the thing that is missing. They wheel about on the stage complaining about the Stagehands, all the while missing each of their attempts to get the requested thing onstage unseen.

In this situation, no matter what the Stagehands try to do to get the Life Actor’s attention, they are ignored and the play continues to drag on in that spot making the Life Actor feel terrible.

 It’s often not until the Life Actor gives up and gets on with the business of continuing the play that the Stagehands are able to slip in unseen to deliver the requested item, and by then the Life Actor may have decided they don’t’ want it anymore, or may feel betrayed that it showed up too late.

Stop asking for what you want to appear instantly. It’s a process!

The Universal Stagehands are on it! They are brilliant at what they do. Just continue to play along with the storyline and jump on every opportunity they give you and everything you want will appear seamlessly in your life production.

When you and the Universal Stagehands are working in concert, the audience will never know you didn’t have what you needed to begin with. It will look like it was part of the story and meant to be all along.

You are closer to achieving your goals than you can possibly imagine. But you must stop fighting your life production and the story that is unfolding.

Relax. Begin to work with the situation instead of against it. Continue to do all the things that you can to give the Universal Stagehands a creative way to bring you what you want. Trust that they are exceptional at their jobs, and know that what you want is coming.

Together we can do it!

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