Finding Your Tribe
People often ask us how we 'found' our team; the creatives we work with over and over again. Our tribe.
When we think about our tribe, the first word that comes to mind is 'Serendipity'.
The coming together of our group of collaborative and creative partners was not forced; it was a trial and error process. Through that process we experienced both the pain of partnerships that weren't the right fit as well as the soaring joy you feel when you click with someone creatively and emotionally.
We committed to people, projects, showing up and making it happen.
We put ourselves out there creatively and collaborated with others. Did it always turn out how we had hoped? No. Almost never. Often it was painful, but there were those few beautiful moments where the collaboration and the experience on the project was better than we could have ever imagined. Each time - pain or gain, we got back up and tried again with a new team.
The times that were sprinkled with pain were amazing opportunities to learn about ourselves. When you experience something painful; you grow.
Look to the lotus - it slogs through mud to be able to show it's blossom to the world.
When you experience hurt, face yourself boldly and honestly and then try again with someone or something new...
it strengthens the muscle called 'courage'.
Look to the mouse - a tiny creature preyed upon by most, yet it boldly faces the dark night in search of food.
When we (Maddie + Corrin) met, our working partnership built upon itself gradually. We tested the waters by writing a pilot together. We didn't go in with a set plan, we allowed things to flow naturally between us and left lots of room for change. Each thing we added to our plate was able to rest upon the trust that had been established through previous projects and the natural progression of us getting to know each other as people.
People have shared stories with us of broken partnerships. They share about times they walked away from a situation feeling betrayed or creatively wounded. Often times both parties had similar narratives and felt hurt by the other when they parted ways.
...Why is that?
When something tough comes up, the tendency can often be to wall up and push your own opinion without hearing the out the rest of the team's thoughts. That will lead you down a path of ego, fear, feeling uncomfortable and not listened to and ultimately the death of a creative partnership.
Finding your creative tribe is like dating.
In the beginning it's butterflies and sunbeams with your teammates; big dreams of changing the world through your art. Then the fear creeps in. 'Do they really want the same things as me?' 'Are they trying to use me?' 'Does this feel as good for them as it does for me...are they waiting for something better to come along?!' Stop. Don't go there. Breathe. Trust.
...and have the courage to speak your mother-fucking truth.
For us, it all comes down to communication. We lay down our arms even when we feel the need to defend. We trust in the decision we made to partner with the people we are working with and choose to approach them with love.
We trust that even if the outcome isn't what we had hoped - that it will lead to something new. Change. Growth.
In our Tribe, each individual is responsible for voicing their own thoughts, wants and needs. In our Tribe, each member is committed to hearing the wants and needs of others and having the courage to speak up if theirs are different. That's hard to do sometimes.
Being in a tribe takes hard work. It’s worth every tearful conversation and angry blowup.
When you can hang in there with people you care for and know that your partners have the same end goal as you - to create something amazing - you have nowhere to grow but up and things become magical and expansive.
Being part of a creative tribe means laying down your ego. It means allowing the goal to be ‘how can this project be it’s best’ and trusting that your partners have the same mindset. It means releasing old thought patterns and knee jerk reactions that are rooted in self-protection. When the Ego comes-a-knockin’ (it will. for sure.) just open the door and say "Thanks for trying to protect me, but..."