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How to Make 2021 Your Year – Happy New Year!
Well, 2020 has been one hell of a year. Our industry has been turned upside down and inside out. The way business is done in Hollywood has been changed forever. There has been so much pain and suffering this year. People lost their jobs.
Legendary companies that were thought to be unbreakable filed for bankruptcy. The mear act of being on set became a highly dangerous occupation. So many beloved filmmakers and actors passed away. Film festivals closed their doors. Movie theaters giants shut their doors, some for good. COVID-19 devasted not only our business but the world.
2020 just f**king sucked!
With all that said I see a light of hope on the horizon. Like every New Years before Jan 1 brings with it a new hope, an opportunity to improve things, and for your life to be better than before. 2021 has a lot of pressure on it for sure. I know so many tribe members have had a rough go of it but the only thing we can do is to take charge of what you can control.
You might not be able to control the world, the virus, your employer, or the economy. But you can control what you do on a daily basis, how you act, how you think. You can think everything sucks and there’s no hope for you or your dreams or you can think that you have the power to change where you are in life right now.
Every dream, every success story started with one thought, I CAN DO THIS. As Henery Ford once said
“If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.”
The power of your own thoughts is so much more mighty than you think. Trust me I speak from experience. Looking back on my life I realized that in the roughest moments my thoughts were destructive and when I was experiencing great successes my thoughts were constructive. Whatever you focus on grows so if I were you I’d focus on the positive and not the negative.
This year I came to a profound truth that the key to success is to help others. The moment I launched Indie Film Hustle my life began to change. The more I helped others the better my life became. The opportunities I had been chasing for decades just started showing up at my door. Don’t get me wrong, as you know I hustled like crazy but not on getting things for myself as much as providing value to other people. As Les Brown said
“Help othersachieve their dreamsand you will achieve yours.”
In 2021 make it a goal to help others with their dreams and I promise you that things in your life will change, it did for me. In 2020 I released my second feature film On the Corner of Ego and Desire, created BulletproofScreenwriting.tv, my premium online education platform IFH Academy, launched the IFH Podcast Network and multiple podcasts including The Filmmaking Motivation Podcast, The Directors Series Podcast, Inside the Screenwriter’s Mind Podcast, and spoke to legendary filmmakers and screenwriters on my shows like Oliver Stone, Barry Sonnenfeld, Alex Proyas, James V. Hart, and John Badham just to name a few.
And most importantly I was inspired by you the Indie Film Hustle and Bulletproof Screenwriting Tribes. Your stories of overcoming obstacles, massive successes, and following your dreams moved me. Getting emails and messages from around the world gave me hope that yes we are in tough times but even with all that you, the tribe, continues to move forward like an unstoppable creative force.
In 2021 we will try, fail, and try again because remember…
“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” – Henry Ford
The more you might fail the closer you are to succeeding. I’ll be trying a ton of new things in the new year and hope they will be a success but am ready if they don’t live up to my expectations.
In 2021 I’ll be launching a couple of new companies, partnering with amazing new instructors for IFH Academy, releasing my new book, adding amazing new content to Indie Film Hustle TV, publishing new audiobooks through IFH Books, producing a few new podcasts for the IFH Podcast Network, and developing new websites to further help filmmakers and screenwriters follow their dreams.
I want you to write down what you want to accomplish in 2021 and what steps you will be taking every day to get those goals. Do you want to set a goal of one or two screenplays a year as Oliver Stone does? Do you want to direct your first feature film? What needed tools do you want to put in your toolbox? What need skills do you want to learn to make you a more dangerous and knowledgeable filmmaker or screenwriter?
After speaking to hundreds of the industry’s most successful artists and business people I found they all had one thing in common, they never gave up! They all just kept going no matter what. Oliver Stone had the script for Platoon in his pocket for years before someone produced it. James V. Hart was in his forties when he had his breakout with Hook and Dracula. Barry Sonnenfeldwent from shooting adult films to having his movies gross almost $2.5 billion worldwide.
Every successful person you look up to failed and failed often on their way to success. They never gave up and you shouldn’t either. Every no is one step closer to a yes. I wish all of you an amazing 2021 and don’t forget to keep that hustle going and keep that dream alive!
Be well, stay safe, and Happy New Year.