I hit a grand slam.
Bottom of the ninth. Bases loaded. Deep ball to left field. To win the game.
But despite the excitement and glory of the moment, I had one major league problem on my hands …
It was my first at-bat ever.
No, I don’t really play baseball. Well, except for that summer park league in the fifth grade when I hit the ball twice all season. Two foul balls.
Hand-eye coordination was never my thing.
Yeah, I can’t hit a round ball with a round bat to save my life. But I have been known to knock a podcast interview out of the park.
And that’s what was keeping me up at night.
It was January of 2016 — damn, time flies — and my guest was none other than Bob Proctor. I prepped for that interview like a maniac. Wrote the perfect set of questions. Was totally 100% ready to interview one of my heroes.
I can honestly say, I nailed it. By the time I was done with Bob, he’d said our interview was the best he’d done in 55 years. And if you listen closely, you can hear what I call my “Barbara Walters moment.” You know, when the guest isn’t ready for a question and gets a little emotional. It was unforgettable.
I eventually said goodbye to Bob, clicked off of Skype, and did the Carlton dance in my office.
A week or so later, I released the episode on The Sean Croxton Sessions podcast. The audience loved it. I loved it. Everyone f*cking loved it!
And that’s when I realized I was in BIG trouble …
Because it was the very first episode of the podcast. Episode #001 of what I imagined would be hundreds of interviews.
I was haunted by the dreaded question: how could I possibly top this?
There was no doubt that the next episode would be a letdown, for me and the listeners. The bar had been set way too high. No room for improvement. FML!
I didn’t know it at the time, but this pickle I’d found myself in is the inevitable conundrum that all creatives struggle with. It reminds me of when I asked author Jen Sincero what it was like to sit down and write her second book after You Are a Badass had reached cult classic status.
Her answer: she bawled her eyes out in her driveway, in her bathrobe.
The artist succeeds and laments, troubled over whether the next project will ever live up to this vaulted standard.
The artist fails and laments, mourning all of the time and effort that went into the flop.
The solution: Ask yourself, what would Elizabeth Gilbert do?
Imagine being the author of Eat, Pray, Love. Having your memoir on the bestseller list for 187 weeks. Oprah has you on her show. Twice. Then, a movie studio turns your book into a movie, with Julia Roberts playing you.
How you do follow that one up???
Tap a link below to find out how, despite the intimidation of past accomplishments, Elizabeth found her way home.