A good preamble to reading this post is to watch my Hollywood Drive & Talk on "Show Me the Love," as this post expands upon the concept I introduce there.
So what is “Show Me the Love”? It's a new currency to quantify the human, energetic and spiritual compensation that reflects meaning and value in our lives.
We are entering an era where money is no longer the only thing of import. In fact, financial incentive has drained out of most endeavors.
The familiar excuse that you may hate your job, that you're not fulfilled by your work, that your day-to-day is immensely stressful or that it's not really what you want to be doing — but you just can't quit because the "money is just too good" — has become a hollow one. Those days seem to be — by and large — over.
The same is true for Hollywood. Compensation ain't what it used to be. A-listers are hanging in the game and newcomers or very low paid artisans are getting opportunity because that's all the financiers want to pay. It's all the market will bear.
The result: very little in between. The layer in the middle is gone. And that "middle" is almost everyone else.
What that means is that people are forced to reflect on their fulfillment quotient. They start asking themselves: "If I'm not getting paid to do this, is this what I love? If it's not what I love, what is?" And that's exactly the right question.
Because compensation needs to be more than monetary.
Monetary is momentary. Money is a resource to facilitate enjoyment in this brief nanosecond we are gifted with a life on the planet, but you can't take it with you. And truly, monetary compensation is not the mark of success: it's the result of success. If you are living successfully, the money will follow.
Gandhi said: "Nearly everything you do is of no importance, but it's important that you do it." So while we're on this journey of unimportance, shouldn't we make the best of it? Do something that makes us happy and fulfilled? Do something of meaning and value? Leave behind a spiritual legacy of consequence?
I was just at the Big Bear Film Festival, where Tom Schulman, the writer of “Dead Poets Society,” was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award. We were treated to the key scene from the film where Robin Williams imparts upon the boys the imperative of carpe diem: "Seize the day." It’s all about making the most of the time we have. And that means meaning. Following our bliss. Showing the love.
As you go through your work day ask yourself, “Am I being shown the love? The “love” is the totality of your feelings regarding your self-worth, your financial remuneration, being treated with respect, dealt with equitably, considerately, as a valued member of the team, being appreciated and ultimately feeling like your work has lasting value.
This is your pH test for what's working and what's not; what direction to travel in and who to enlist in your cause — who to work with, run towards, run from — who the universe is magnetizing you to and who it's not. It's about being directed to the right people who will support you and what you are trying to accomplish.
If you find you are being shown the love in kind, then cast your life force in that direction — toward those projects, people and partners who are reciprocating. It's that easy.
This is also a barometer for your own awareness of how the energy, appreciation and resources should be flowing from you to others. It heightens your own awareness of the help you receive, which should be acknowledged and returned.
Remember, it doesn't work if you just take-take-take. It's a two-way street. The Beatles once sang, "In the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make."
So make some love, Hollywood party people.