It was one of those moments that rattle you so much that they can change your whole life. Actually it was not a moment, but almost an entire morning. I was out in the field, it was wet, it was cold, I had the wrong shoes on, was not the least interested in the subject or in the people I was supposed to interview…and could have screwed up the entire interview.
The team has realized that I had a bad attitude toward this job, the interviewees did too, and later during editing, the editor had her work cut out for her trying to make something reasonable out of that material. And all because I was grumpy that day. I am still grateful today that basically, someone held a mirror up to me. Because on that day, I definitely did not do a good job. Worse yet, it didn’t occur to me how I was and how it was affecting everyone around me. Luckily, however, this got really branded in my memory and I never forgot it. Nor did I ever forget afterwards how embarrassing this was…
The Show must go on
I saw an example at the other end of the spectrum on TV some time ago. In a documentary about the singer Katy Perry, she has tears in her eyes and is under the stage because she had just had an argument with her then husband on the phone and knew that her marriage was over. Then when the music starts, she takes the mic, rallies herself, assumes the proper attitude, and the lifting platform delivers her to the spotlight, and for the next two and a half hours she delivers a fantastic, colorful show. Pure atmosphere. The audience went wild. No one would have ever guessed that this young woman on the stage felt like bursting out crying. Because she acted like a professional. She shows attitude and does her job. And the best part: It is precisely because of her attitude and professionalism that she gets so much positive feedback, so much so that that she can almost forget about her problems.
Do not disappoint others just because you are just disappointed
Even if you aren’t a superstar like Katy Perry: Everyone has their stage in life upon which they appear, and has their small and big appearances. Everyone has people around him whom he can inspire – or disappoint. You’ll get unfiltered feedback on your behavior. If you are mean because you have a petty attitude toward something, you will be dragged down even further. If you try to be professional, however, you will probably make others feel better about things and bring them back to the sunny side of life. It’s really so simple. Try it. I have been doing this since that unforgettably embarrassing morning.