For whatever reason I get asked by a lot of up and coming creatives for some life advice. I take it as a compliment and attribute it to my entering "elder statesmen" status-- which means I have grey hair.
This is what I offered to two protoge's but I can offer this to several of my peers as well. Take it for what it's worth;
1. Quit smoking. This one should be a no brainer. I've never smoked. I think it's disgusting. Worse, I think a man smoking looks like a fruit. If that sentence offends you please leave the blog and never return.
2. Start Exercising. This should be a no-brainer too but judging by the fact that 85% of American's are now considered OBESE it needs to be said. You'll not only look better, you'll feel better. Get up you fatass, stretch. Lift some weights. Go for a walk, jump on a treadmill for 20 minutes a day. TWENTY MINUTES A DAY. You can't find 20 minutes???
3. Stay out of bars. Unless it's a hotel bar or it's an ultra high class bar. In that case go for it. But restrict yourself to no more than TWO gin-bucks. Gin Bucks, by the way, are gin and ginger ale-- ask for diet ginger ale and you're only looking at about 40 calories a drink. I myself am known to order the fruitiest looking drink on the menu (there's that fruit word again, it's going to be a theme today) so I'm not going to judge you if you do too.
4. Get around good people and good influences. Take a look at the circle of friends you have and ask yourself if these are the people you envision yourself as. If they aren't dump 'em and get some better friends.
5. Write everyday-- snippets of dialogue you hear, situations that happen. Writing exercises your brain. If you can draw do some of that two-- I'd combine the two.
6. Read some good books-- Raymond Chandler, John Steinbeck. I'm currently reading a new one by Michael Chabon. It's good. Good books make you talk gooder.
7. Get a haircut.
8. Stop dressing like you're 17. Get some polo shirts and sports jackets. You want to be treated like an adult, start dressing like one. I have another student who is very talented, he's also approaching the big 4-0 and he still dresses like he did when I knew him when he was in high school. He stood out in high school because he was heavily goth. He still is. That's who he is. That's great. The Libtards will tell you it's okay to be yourself and if people aren't okay with it that's their problem. They're right too. But Uncle Andy is going to tell you a good hard truth. IF these people we're talking about are looking to spend some money on you for your creative endeavors and you look like you might be homeless there's a pretty good chance they're going to hire me because I'm wearing a sports jacket and look like I can balance a checking account.
It's a fact. I go outside into the world wearing my vintage 1980s Members Only Jacket that I got in Brimfield and people let the door close in my face. I go to the same places wearing a sports jacket or my $1200 Cashmere top coat and people hold doors for me and call me sir. That's science brah.
Be yourself on your own time. Be the successful person you want to be when you are presenting yourself to others. Leave the T-Shirts at home, and I swear to god if I see you outside in sweatpants I'm going to bash you over the head with a cantaloupe.
9. Eat more fruits and vegetables. Ok, fruit anyway, I can't advocate vegetables for anyone with a straight face knowing how much I hate them.
10. Embrace Buddah and his teaching. The main focus if you don't want to spend 7 years getting to it-- everything in the world has purpose and positivity is the ONLY energy you should expend. Find the positive in everything. It works.