I’m very grateful for my day job. Not just because it provides me with my bread and butter, and not only because it allows me to pay for my filmmaking projects and to turn down jobs I don’t want to do.
That job, for those interested, is TEACHER. I’ve worn a few hats as a teacher, in-store trainer, Art Teacher, Design Teacher, and what I’m doing now, teaching English as a second language, which also sometimes involves assisting in the training of new teachers. I’ve also mentored a few young artists in my time.
The reason I am grateful for this job is that it allows me to meet people from all walks of life, and talk to people that I otherwise would never talk to. I’ve learned that people with different points of view to myself can be just as wonderful and funny and charming as people with whom I share a common interest. It has also forced me to find a common interest with everyone I meet. Even if that it just a simple thing like the fact that we both like the same Japanese food.
Not only is this good practice for things like Cannes (where you are literally talking to hundreds of strangers every day, trying to make a connection), but it’s been good for me as a person. Being fairly shy and introverted, it’s not really in my nature to just go up to a person and strike up a conversation. I tend to stick with the people I know well and feel comfortable with if I do go out. If not, I tend to prefer my own company. But, I am a bit of a social introvert. I do like talking to people (unless they are energy vampires), and being able to communicate is an important skill to have (unless one has telekinesis). And I truly have learned by teaching.
Some of my biggest achievements have happened through teaching, and they have usually been small things that I’ve done just out of routine, but have made a big impact on someone else.
I am by no means a perfect teacher, but I have made a small impact on some people’s lives, for which I am truly humbled by. And they have in turn, made a huge impact on my life, for which I will be eternally grateful.