Last week, I was lucky enough to see the Broadway show Hamilton! Admittedly, I had pretty high expectations going in given all the rave reviews, record breaking ticket sales, awards, and celebrity audience attendees. This show blew all those expectation right out of the water! Hamilton is without a doubt one of the most inspiring, innovative, creative, passionate, authentic, and moving pieces of storytelling through the medium of stage that I have ever experienced!
I was first introduced to storytelling, and fell in love with it, through the same medium of stage when my mother took me to see my first Broadway show – Peter Pan- at the ripe old age of 6. I instantly fell in love with that world of make believe where anything and everything is possible if you only believe! From then on, I grew up going to shows – Broadway, Off-Broadway, local theatre groups, whatever; and spent my entire childhood and young adult life impassioned with storytelling – on stage, in front of the camera, and behind it.
Stories, and storytelling, through whatever medium – whether it be the written word, stage, film, video, or music – are sometimes our best teachers. Stories, and the art of storytelling, are what allow us to learn about ourselves, to learn about others, to question things, to reflect and self-reflect, to sympathize and empathize, and to feel compassion and understanding.
Like most stories, this story of Hamilton holds many messages. One of the messages, and musical numbers in this show struck a particularly poignant cord with me: “I’m Not Throwing Away My Shot!” This number and message resonated with me because it spoke to one of my most sacred truths in life; and that is that we only have one shot in this life, so I’ll be damned if I’m going to throw away mine, aka “Seize Your Passion!”
Life is not a dress rehearsal. We get one go at it, and do not get a second shot. Within that one shot at life, countless opportunities present themselves to us literally daily, and we only get one shot at those too. I’m not throwing away my shot in the big picture of life, and I’m not throwing away my shot (or at least I am consciously aiming not to) for every moment of countless opportunities that I am met with.
For me, the message of I’m not throwing away my shot, is synonymous with the message of Seize Your Passion. For me, not throwing away my shot in life is really about being true to myself, being authentic, engaging my passions, connecting with my authentic self and my truth – not somebody else’s – doing what I love and what brings me alive, pursuing my dreams, achieving my goals, becoming the best version of myself that I can be, creating value, and attaining personal growth and fulfillment. That’s really what Seize Your Passion is all about, and what it means to me; and for me, that’s really what not throwing away my shot is about too.
That message also ties into another idea I’ve been thinking about. There are some people that don’t believe that we, as individuals – as regular, everyday, ordinary real people – can change the world. That the idea of changing the world is better left for the storybooks, or the icons and leaders of the world. I disagree.
Even if you believe that you can not change the world, you can shape your world! We all live in the collective world, but each one of us has our own individual world. And, there is such a thing called the collective unconscious. So, by controlling and shaping your own individual world – by seizing your passion, being authentic and true to yourself, becoming the best version of yourself you can be, pursuing your dreams, achieving your goals, finding personal growth and fulfillment in your life, and by not throwing away your shot – you are in fact changing the world because of that thing called the collective unconscious. Each and every one of us – when we shape our own individual world, when we seize our passion, and when we don’t throw away our shot, we are changing the world!
Rachel Ellner Lebensohn, Proud Creator & Founder of Seyopa
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