This quarter at UCLA I took a class known as Arts Encounters: Exploring Arts Literacy in the 21st Century. I'll admit, I took this class merely to fulfill a GE requirement and, generally, GE classes aren't the most intriguing. Not to mention all I had heard regarding this particular course were tales of caution: "It gets real weird, be sure to have a friend with you."
So, I went in with a less than open mind, only to leave with a more inventive mindset and greater desire to create than I did before.
Seeing art, doing art and analyzing art: this is what the class entails and for many, albeit for most, this presents a huge challenge. Copious amounts of hours over the past ten weeks have been dedicated to exercises that, in an academic centered community, seem somewhat frivolous.
Yet, I couldn't be happier.
This class pushed me out of my comfort zone in so many ways. I not only became comfortable with thinking outside the box and expressing my creativity, but also gained some shreds of invaluable wisdom.
During one of the last lectures, the professor stood atop her desk in front of nearly 300 students, howled, and proclaimed a brief proverb of profound advice:
"In order to create something you have to be willing to go someplace you've never been before. And in this place is fear and discomfort. You need to fucking jump."
And she jumped (Granted it was from a two and half foot tall table, but the point still stands).
I got a really unjustified case of the chills, only to realize it was due to my unrecognized want to hear something short-sweet-and-to-the-point telling me to just fucking go for it.
By this I mean: don't fear the unknown, embrace what's holding you back and go for it.
So often we are plagued by the angst of going against the grain, the unease of the uncharted, the terror of ridicule and the dread of being different.
It is these fears that shroud the creativity of many and cut short the words of most. To be fearful is to limit yourself, and to limit yourself is a disservice to both yourself and the rest of the world.
Vulnerability is terrifying at times—trust me, I put my words out there once a week for anyone and everyone to ridicule, scorn, or both—yet, it's the fact it's so frightening that makes all creation so absolutely enticing. We as human beings are allured by that which scares us, and to see another put themselves out there is not only encaptivating, but also inspiring.
By taking a chance and embracing vulnerability you'll inspire yourself and others.
Find your calling and just fucking jump.