How to Redefine Failure and Flip into Possibility

BPT_Jeff_Blog_Typewriter-01Editor’s Note: Jeff Leisawitz is the author of the book “Not F’ing Around,” as well as an award-winning musician/producer and internationally distributed filmmaker. He has some sound advice for creative folks and event organizers on failing fast.

Live in Seattle? Attend Jeff’s workshop April 9: Discover What You Love (and Why)

Have you ever failed? Yeah, me too. It sucks.

Now step back. Define failure.

Most people would probably say it has something to do with choosing a goal and not reaching it. This is simple, objective. And short-sighted.

Let’s dig in. If you buy stock in your favorite start-up tech company at 10 bucks a pop, hold onto it for a year and sell at 7 bucks, you lost money. You failed. But if you hold onto that stock for another year and it jets to seventeen, you succeeded. You made money.

What’s the difference? Time and perspective. Now let’s take it to the streets.

You’re an actor. You love it. Ever since that school play when you dressed up as one of the three bears in third grade you just knew this was your thing. You’ve taken tons of classes, read a million books, watched, studied and analyzed a zillion plays, movies and TV series. You burn for a leading role on a TV show. And you kinda sorta really want it to be about zombies.

Years go by. You get some gigs but it’s mostly small time stuff. Not enough to really pay the rent. So you do side jobs to keep the money flowing in the right direction.

NotFingAroundCoverPhoto copySome would call this failure. I wouldn’t.

If you stop going to auditions, quit and move back to your hometown, then yeah, you fail. But the failure has nothing to do with the goal, the failure is in the quitting.

Get this. If you continue on with the auditions, networking, etc., your chance of success is infinitely greater than if you quit.

If you stop you can’t possibly succeed. If you continue there is always possibility.

Make sure you hear this clearly—If you push forward on your creative dreams you’re infinitely more likely to succeed than if you bail out.

But there’s more … when we don’t reach our goals, we have a choice on how we perceive the situation. A lousy perception is to believe we failed. (An even worse perception is that we are a failure.)

But if you look more deeply at any situation you’ll find huge benefits. Ask questions and you’ll learn something important. How can I change it next time? How can I do it better? Who can I ask for help? What went right? What went wrong?

Then continue. Step forward. Re-assess your goals.

Do whatever it takes to align yourself with your new wisdom and knowledge.

You now have an infinitely greater likelihood of success.

In case you hadn’t noticed, a whole lot of life is how you look at it. Redefine failure. Flip into possibility.

Read the entire post and take the quiz. Find the NFA book and get your creative dreams off the ground. 

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The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features a writing workshop, a make-up class, a lingerie fashion show, break dancing and more.

Writer Bill Ransom speaks at Nuts & Bolts: Improve Your Writing 50% in One Hour at the UW Center for Urban Horticulture. This class focuses on poetry, fiction and dialogue. Tonight, Tuesday, February 4.

In Atomic Cosmetics’ Pinup Make-up Class on Capitol Hill, learn how to draw an all-star cat eye, perfect your pout and create that beautiful vintage look. Sunday, February 9 at Jen’s House of Beauty on Capitol Hill.

It’s really nowhere near Halloween but you still might want to head over to Re-Bar on Wednesday February 5, and Thursday, February 6, for Thriller: A Burlesque Horror Story based on Michael Jackson’s epic album. The King of Pop and burlesque. Anything goes!

If you’re a Lou Reed fan you definitely want to make your way to Northwest Film Forum on Capitol Hill on Thursday, February 6, for Music Craft: Lou Reed. This film showcases rare footage of Lou Reed moments, rock outs and makeovers.

On Saturday, February 8, it’s all about the 6th Annual Red Dress Party at Fremont Studios. This fundraiser is designed to raise money to help people living with HIV/ AIDS. And yes, a red dress is required.

Who doesn’t like lingerie? Get an eyeful at Neighbors’ Lingerie Fashion Show on Saturday, February 8. Featured lines include Twala Intimates, Love Letters Lingerie, Backpack Girl Lingerie and more.

Saturday, February 8, at Phinney Neighborhood Center it’s the Lunar New Year Celebration at Ridge Romp. This exciting show features music, lion dancers, drummers, marital arts and more.

The Northwest Royale goes down at Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute on Saturday, February 8. Watch internationally known break dancers go nuts on the dance floor. Amazing moves. Amazing music.

Not into breakdancing, vintage make-up and lingerie? Not a big deal. We have tons of amazing theater events coming up this week.  Here are just a few of our favorites.
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The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features local comedy, a masquerade party, a drag brunch and tons of great film screenings.

Want to know the nitty gritty legal aspect when working with art dealers and galleries? Tomorrow, Wednesday, January 29, at Safeco Plaza is the place to be for Gallery Law. Sponsored by Washington Lawyers for the Arts.

Thursday, January 30, head over to the Jewelbox Theater in Belltown for Now with Dames Presents: 66% New Dames. This local sketch comedy troupe keep it fun with plenty of feminine influence.

Head down to Georgetown on Thursday, January 30, for Snowball 2014 at Seattle Design Center. This sixth annual silent auction and dinner benefits the Northwest Avalanche Center.

Splinter Dance Company is a group of dancers who are coming together for An Art of Justice Performance at Seattle University.  This one is all about community awareness of critical social issues. Thursday, January 30.

Friday, January 31, head over to the Lake City Community Center for Chinese New Year Celebration and Lion Dance. Martial arts, tai chi, acupuncture and the lion dance. Not your average Friday night.

Masquerade Waltz 2014 happens at the Century Ballroom on Friday, January 31. It’s a passionate night of waltz, swing, foxtrot and tango. Details on the site.

When I Grow Up I Want to Be Me happens at the Broadway Performance Hall on Capitol Hill on Friday, January 31, and Saturday, February 1. Check out the tunes of Diverse Harmony, the nation’s first gay and straight alliance youth chorus.

On Sunday, February 2, and pretty much every other Sunday, head over to Julia’s on Capitol Hill for the Queen of the Brunch Drag Show. Eat an omelette and watch the show.
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The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features a rye whiskey tasting, the School of Rock tackling new wave classics, a class on sheep brain dissection (!) and more!

Tomorrow, Wednesday, January 15, head over to the Barrel Thief in Fremont for their Annual Winter Rye Tasting. You’ll learn all about the history of rye and its distillation process. Plus, you’ll get a chance to sip ten different samples. Everything you always wanted to know about rye but were afraid to ask.

After eating rotten meat, a brainless brunette is transformed into a dangerous genius. Am I talking about your weird dream last night? No. This is the plot of Pig Death Machine, a movie at Northwest Film Forum. Perverse sci-fi/ comedy at its best. Tuesday January 14, through Thursday, January 16.

Thursday, January 16, through Sunday, January 19, 9th Street Studios in South Lake Union features the play The Memory of Water. Three sisters come together on the eve of their mother’s funeral. Dramatic with moments of levity.

Friday, January 17, and Saturday, January 18, you’re probably going to hit happy hour anyway, so why not check out Improv Happy Hour at Unexpected Productions’ Market Theater. Good fun. Improv style.

The intimate venue Empty Sea Studios in Greenwood features the music of singer/ songwriters Danny Schmidt and Carrie Elkin on Friday, January 17. These two astonishing solo artists come together for this very special performance.

Saturday, January 18, at Oddfellows Hall on Capitol Hill, it’s time for Glitter & Mischief: An Alumni Invitational featuring Jo ‘Boobs’ Weldon. Lots of other great performers, too. This one is not to be missed.

On Saturday, January 18, the School of Rock presents New Wave and Rock 101. Kids going retro. Obviously, this is going to be awesome. Check it out at Chop Suey on Capitol Hill.
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The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features burlesque calendar girls, Thai food recipes and marketing tips for indie authors. 

Tonight, Tuesday, January 7, it’s time for Self Defense 101 for Women at University Heights Community Center or Phinney Neighborhood Center. In this six week class you’ll learn everything you need to know to stay safe and defend yourself.

If this is the year you’re going to publish your book, you definitely want to make an appearance at Sell Your eBooks and Drive Reviews at the UW Center for Urban Horticulture also tonight, Tuesday, January 7. Listen to best selling author Ingrid Ricks share everything she knows about being a successful indie author.
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The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features our top picks for this year’s New Year’s Eve! These are just a few ways to ring in 2014.

Conor Byrne Pub in Ballard hosts the 2nd Annual Artist Home New Year’s Eve Celebration. Lots of guest musicians on the roster including members of Big Sur, Ravenna Woods, Hounds of the Wild Hunt, Smokey Brights and more.

If you wanna get exotic this year check out Afro-Caribbean New Year’s Night at Salsa N Seattle. The doors open at 10. Breakfast at 4. In between expect lots of partying, plus an amazing performance by Sultan Clinton, DJ Toni and others.

If you really wanna feel the music this time around, perhaps a stop at Bassdrop Music NYE 2014 is the way to go. This one is at the newly renovated Monkey Loft in Sodo and features DJs Jameson Just, Paul Wheeler, Tyler Brown and others.

Lucky Strike in Bellevue hosts Cirque Glow New Year’s Even 2014. With prices ranging from thirty bucks to a ten thousand dollar VIP package (yes, you heard that right) there’s plenty of bowling, dining, drinking and dancing for everyone. Plus acrobats and other circus performers. Amazing party.

This might be the year to go back in time. Couple’s Cupid 70’s New Years Eve Groovy Dance Party goes back to the 70’s. So wear your best vintage clothes. This sexy event is limited to couples and single females only.

If you wanna go straight for the tunes this year, head over to the High Dive in Fremont. You’ll blaze in the new year with The West, Ever So Android and Dead Ship Sailing. Great bands, indeed.

In the mood for some Russian influence this time around? How about spending new year’s eve at the Russian Community Center of Seattle on Capitol Hill. They’re calling it The Firebird. Your hostess will be decked out in Russian attire. There will be plenty of Russian food and music. And of course, there will be enough vodka for everyone.

Wanna go retro? Why not spend the evening at Fuel Sports in Pioneer Square with Platinum Spandex. That’s Puget Sound’s best 80’s hair rock band. You know you sorta wish it was 1987.


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The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features our top picks including a belly dance dinner, an improv happy hour and a benefit concert for the Philippines.

By tomorrow, Thursday, December 26, it’s probably time to get out of the house. So head on down to High Dive for Hip-Hop at the High Dive featuring Dirtay, Mike G. and M.A.R., and the The Sav among others. Good tunes in Fremont.

It is the giving season. On Friday night, December 27, help people who are in serious need. Roosevelt High School in Ravenna hosts An Evening with Stephanie Reese & Friends : A Benefit Concert for Victims of the Typhoon in the Phillippines. Great music, great cause.

Sick of Santa? Weary of wreaths? Tired of Tinsel? Unnatural Redhead Productions brings Midwinter Madness to the Jewelbox Theater in Belltown on Friday, December 27. That’s all kinds of burlesque for your viewing pleasure.

Friday, December 27, and Saturday, December 28, head on over to Unexpected Production’s Market Theater for Improv Happy Hour. That’s a sampler of improv formats and styles during what some would consider the best hour of the day.

Saturday, December 28, catch La Faux at Julia’s on Broadway on Capitol Hill. This show features a full cast of impersonators, dancers and outrageous acts. And if you’re hungry, chow down on some dinner while you enjoy the show.

Saturday, December 28, have a nice meal and check out some belly dancing at Kezira Cafe in Columbia City. The show is free with dinner. You really can’t go wrong with this one.

Dress up in your favorite handmade attire or make something new for Maker’s Masquerade at Jigsaw Renaissance in the ID on Saturday, December 28. While you’re there, learn how to make simple circuits using aluminum tape and LEDs. Pretty fun, right?

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The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features poetry, a talk on the music industry, School of Rock’s Holiday Party and more!

Tonight, Tuesday, December 17, through Thursday, December 19, it’s movie time at Northwest Film Forum on Capitol Hill. Improvement Club is equal parts musical comedy, dance party and mockumentary. Good fun.

Wednesday, December 18, head over to the Richard Hugo House on Capitol Hill for Who Will Speak— A Celebration of Poetry and Readers. Authors Roger Reeves and Natalie Diaz will read from their debut books. This one is presented with Copper Canyon Press.

How about a trip to Vashon? On Thursday, December 19, hit up Open Space for Art and Community for Acrobatic Conundrum: The Way Out. This one features heart stopping acrobatics, aerial, theater and dance wrapped around a story of survival. Worth the trip.

If you’re more concerned about your music career than the holidays, check out Martin Atkins’ workshop Welcome to the Music Business— You’re F*cked on Friday, December 20. Atkins has worked with Public Image Limited, Ministry and Nine Inch Nails, among others, so he knows what he’s talking about. This one is free and it’s at the Brown Paper Tickets office in Fremont.

You know about School of Rock, right? Kids learning to play in rock bands. On Friday, December 20, head over to Fred Wildlife Refuge on Capitol Hill for School of Rock’s Season Preview Show and Holiday Party. Bring your ear plugs. It might get loud.

Saturday, December 21, get your erotic holiday spirit in gear at The Sultry Solstice Cocktail Party at Love City Love on Capitol Hill. That’s song, dance, spoken word performances, skits and visual art. It’s bound to be a hot night.

Spend the evening at a coffeeshop in the U District as Cafe Soulstice presents the band Yesod, on Saturday, December 21. Best described as a blend of world, blues, jazz and ambient music styles, these rich, living soundscapes go great with your favorite caffeinated beverage.

On Sunday, December 22, why not celebrate the winter solstice at Columbia City Theater with The Longest Night: Bellydance for the Solstice. This show features performances by Verbena Belly Dance, Carouselle Tribal Belly Dance and the Blue Lotus Dance Company.


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The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features including tributes to Jimi Hendrix and Lou Reed, tons of holiday gift events and even more food events!

Tomorrow, Wednesday, November 27, head on over to the Vera Project at Seattle Center for the Jimi Hendrix Annual Birthday Tribute Concert. It’s live music by Leon and Tina Hendrix and others. Serious rock just in time for the holiday.

Also, tomorrow Wednesday, November 27, Kirkland’s Laughs Comedy Spot hosts Turkey Day Eve Comedy Show. Seattle’s funniest people take on the impending holiday. Good laughs right before the big day.

If the Jimi Hendrix show got you in the mood for tribute concerts, head on over to the Columbia City Theater on Friday, November 29, for a Tribute to Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground. This one features performances by Hounds of the Wild Hunt, Bigfoot Wallace and others.

Friday, November 29 and through the weekend, hit up the Native Holiday Gift Fair at Duwamish Longhouse & Cultural Center. Buy directly from native crafts people. Great stuff in every price range.

Friday November 29, through the weekend and beyond, check out Unexpected Productions’ An Improvised Christmas Carol. The audience decides the story. It’s different every time. But it’s always funny, weird and Christmas-y.

You know about Etsy, the online craft shop, right? Take it live on Friday, November 29 and Saturday, November 30, at Elliot Hall at Pier 66. Check out tons of hand made crafts from local Etsy artists.

Saturday, November 30, it’s as good a time as any to get environmental. So head on over to the Bullitt Center on Capitol Hill for a tour of the greenest commercial building in the country. It’s a very cool space with some serious solar panels on the roof.

On Sunday, December 1, why not learn how to make a cute stuffed whale at Ugly Baby and La Ru in downtown Seattle? No experience necessary. And you’ll walk away with a cute little stuffed whale. Perfect for a kiddo in your life.

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Arts >

The Pronto Podcast — Brown Paper Tickets’ Event Guide for Seattle

BPT_buttonWelcome to The Pronto! Brown Paper Ticket’s event guide for Seattle.

Tune in every Tuesday to check out a few of our favorite events in the Emerald City! You can check back to the blog every Tuesday at 10am or hit “subscribe” on the player and get each week’s Pronto delivered right to your computer.

Have a friend that’s visiting Seattle this week? Why not share this podcast with them and give them ideas of something to do? 

This week’s podcast features including a punk rock documentary in Africa, a meditation retreat and a stripping class.

When was the last time you went to a pop-up restaurant? Well, tonight, Tuesday, November 19, you’ve got another chance at Whim in Ballard. This event features an affordable multi-course tasting menu with lots of Northwest ingredients. Show up hungry.

Friday, November 22, and through the weekend, check out The Habit 13, at the Bathhouse Theater at Greenlake. It’s fast paced sketch comedy in an intimate setting. Watch out for the foul language and adult situations.

Dana Goldberg is one of the most sought after performers in comedy. Her new show, Crossing the Line, comes to Theater Off Jackson in the ID on Saturday, November 23rd. Catch her while you can.

If you’ve ever wondered how to strip for your lover, you can find out on Saturday, November 23, on Capitol Hill, with a class called How to Strip for Your Lover. Learn the techniques of tease in this one day class.

November 23 is also the date for the Rain City Rock Camp for Girls Fall Gala and Auction at the Georgetown Ballroom. Help make a difference. Help the girls rock!

If it’s time to chill out, November 23 is the day to do it at The Seattle Mindfulness Retreat with Robert Beatty. This event will be held at Nalanda West in Wallingford. Robert’s teachings are based on the Nobel Eightfold Path of the Buddha.

Saturday, November 25, through the weekend, experience the 3rd Annual Nature Book and Gift Fair at the Seward Park Audubon Center. Field guides, outdoor adventure books, kids books and more. Proceeds benefit the educational programs at the center.


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