It’s just a little molehill.

Yesterday a photographer I collaborated with in the past found it necessary to communicate his critique of my work over the phone. I really wish I hadn’t returned his call after hearing the voice-message, but I do strive to follow up with everyone. I did my best to keep my cool as I listened to what he had to say. I quickly ended the conversation by bluntly telling him MY perspective. I’m sure he could tell I did not appreciate his point of view. It did not benefit anyone and it nearly spoiled the rest of my afternoon.

Everyone’s entitled to their opinion. Opinions are like assholes: everybody has one. However, if you can’t say something nice or positive keep it to yourself, unless I ASK you for your critique. I am a huge fan of constructive criticism, when it’s the appropriate time and place. For example, in my acting and singing studies over the years. An artist can’t grow and evolve without constructive criticism from those who provide proper advice.

I often find myself making mountains out of molehills. I suppose this is especially true for creative types who are constantly critiquing themselves and being evaluated by others, usually by complete strangers. I love auditioning and performing regardless of the outcome. Every audition and performance is an accomplishment and opportunity in my book. I know I can’t please everyone, nobody can. I focus on those who do appreciate my work along with the progress I’ve made in my life, and vice versa. I may think a person is a jerk or I’m not a fan of their work, but I release the thought and move on to something more positive. Negativity is a time suck and negativity sucks.

When feeling dragged down emotionally, I force myself to stop my racing thoughts. I breathe deeply and realize I’m making a big deal out of nothing. When it comes down to it, who cares?

Really. Will this little thing that’s bothering me matter a year from now, let alone five years from now? Probably not. Will the grammatical errors in this blog post keep me from continuing to write? Nope. Will I stop acting if I don’t get the role? Unlikely. Will negative criticism of my music keep me from singing and performing? No way. Even if just one person gathers something positive and uplifting from my work that’s all that matters.

So today I’m making the conscious decision to focus my time and energy into what’s really important in life. Listening to the people who have something nice and positive to say, letting go of the bad vibes. Love and light.

Love and light in the darkness.

Thoughts to pour… thanks for reading.

I’m in my home office/recording studio in a daze on this beautiful spring day, listening to the noise pollution of the East Village, soothed by the sounds of birds chirping with Mother Nature’s breeze caressing me through the open window. This week has been a roller-coaster of human emotions, similar to Manhattan’s auditory spectrum.

I finally cried this morning, sobbing in disbelief. I’ve been putting all of my energy into work and projects, in shock after the tragedy in Boston. I have so many friends who live or have lived in Boston. I don’t even know where to begin…. The first person I checked on immediately was one my best friends. She’s okay, but NOT okay… if that makes any sense. To me it does make sense as reality dawns on me. I am still avoiding the media coverage, in an attempt to keep my emotions in check.

Boston has held a special place in my heart from an early age. I grew up in Florida, the major league spring training capital of America, singing the National Anthem at the big league stadiums in South West Florida. My favorite gig was singing at the opening of the Boston Red Sox games, the most impressive stadium of all. It was quite an honor for a young girl, an invigorating experience performing in front of so many people. My lil knobby knees shook the first time I walked out of the visiting team’s dugout, walking up to the microphone, encouraged by the ocean of people standing up with their hands over their hearts.

Being a creative spirit, I always wanted to live in Manhattan. When I moved to NYC, I still loved both the Yankees and the Red Sox, ignoring the frustration of people who are Yankee or Boston fans… who asked me to choose ONE team. The Yankees were super cool when they were the visiting team in Florida, applauding my singing. And yeah, I totally had girl crushes on the handsome baseball players. I now go to Derek Jeter’s gym, 24 Hour Fitness in Soho. (Subconscious decision on my part?) I’m a lover, not a hater. Why take sides?

I pray (I use this word sparingly as it’s a powerful word) that the lives lost in Boston are not forgotten and the world will focus on the goodness in people, instead of focusing on hate (another powerful word I use sparingly).

I hope you all join me, go outside and take a deep breath. Do something to make the world a better place today, even if it’s something as basic as letting those you love KNOW you love them… before it’s too late. Time is precious, indeed. It’s a blessing to be alive. Oh, and I’m totally going to look into rocking the National Anthem in Boston for the Red Sox and Yankees this summer. It’s long overdue. Love and light.

Never give up.

Writing a quick post today, because I’ve been neglecting my lil blog. Super busy shooting and moving.

Yesterday I was on set of the critically acclaimed TV show Blue Bloods for about 12 hours. Per usual, behind the scenes of a TV or Film shoot it can be a hurry up and wait game for the actors. As long as I’m doing what I love for a living and being fed delish food I don’t mind. And it’s a great show to credit on my resume. I have to say, Tom Selleck is an amazing actor. I am so inspired by the last scene of the episode.  Tears welled up in my eyes during his heart wrenching monologue that gave me chills. He still looks awesome for his age and is still rocking an awesome mustache.

I don’t mind the “hurry up and wait game”. I enjoy meeting and chatting with fellow thespians aka actors while waiting in between scenes. The topic of the struggles that come along with being a performer came up. Some people are very jaded. I have no clue as to WHY they even bother doing something they complain about constantly. I ignore them, accordingly. “I ain’t got time for that negativity.”

Others are acting on the side with a part time job, kinda like a hobby or the means of making extra money to keep food in the fridge. Then you have the ones who are like myself, who are pursuing their creative endeavors full time, dedicated 100 percent. I became friends with another lovely young actress who has been on a similar trail as myself. Persevering on a creative soul journey that has not been easy. Leaving our home states, friends, and families; living in different places with a purpose in mind. Both on paths that brought us to our destination of New York City, with the deep seeded belief that our efforts have not been in vain. I feel it’s better than graduate school, learning life’s lessons and becoming tough as steel. A necessity in the entertainment business.

I summed it up, and would like to share with other creative spirits. NEVER GIVE UP.  You never know what is right around the corner. If you give up, you are throwing away every ounce of blood, sweat, and tears that have fueled your journey to success.


“Reach for the stars.”

SuzyMae Howard