The other day, I had the opportunity to hear Kat Edmonson, a jazz singer, talk about her singing career. She posited that the creative life is one of saying “yes” and of being willing to take opportunities and chances. I share her sentiments toward the creative life, so it was a joy to listen to her speak about her own journey.
She talked about saying yes to quitting school, even though she knew she was supposed to go to school. She talked about saying yes to credit card debt. I couldn’t quite bring myself to agree with her statement about credit card debt, but I have my own debts. I didn’t receive the degrees I did without owing some money to some people. I also wouldn’t have said “no” to school, but school was a part of my journey. It wasn’t and didn’t have to be a part of her journey.
She also talked about saying “yes” to other opportunities, such as singing in New York City. She encountered difficulties with that particular opportunity; her band disbanded (No pun intended.) prior to Edmonson going to New York. She could have decided to change her answer and to lose the opportunity, but she didn’t. She packed her belongings, moved to New York City, and formed a new band.
As a result of saying “yes” to some of those choices and opportunities, Edmonson now is recording her second album. She’s encountering difficulties with it, which is the norm when moving toward a specific goal. To say “yes” is to take a risk, sometimes calculated but sometimes not, and to accept the consequences of that risk.