Monday Prescriptions – 5 Bad Excuses That Harm Your Career

Good morning, Film Doctor friends. As we welcome the new week, The Film Doctor Team are going to go through a list of common excuses used by film folk (and other ‘creatives’), to help put an end to a widespread bout of  “I can’t, because” syndrome.

Film Doctor - Stop Making Excuses

1. “But…”  

“This is a good idea, but it’s expensive/time-consuming/risky”, “I could apply for that new job but when do I have the time”, “I want to make a film but I have to finish this course first”…every time you put a ‘but’ in a sentence, it guarantees the postponing of any idea/action/change. A ‘but’ is something you impose on yourself, which gives you an excuse to prolong whatever it is you need to resolve. Once you fulfill one of your “requirements”, you immediately (even if subconsciously) think of another – and the line of excuses continues. Stop applying brakes to your own dreams!


2. “I Have To Pay Bills / Creativity Doesn’t Feed You” 

This is a ‘favourite’ amongst freelancers and emerging talent that’re afraid to fully dedicate themselves to one creative field – recent graduates, second jobbers, etc. Writing only in the evenings, shooting only at weekends, working on ideas & projects only now and then, because the reality of the creative world seems too harsh. Truth is, your film-related work can pay your bills too, if you give it a ‘full go’ and make it your job. Become a ‘jobbing’ filmmaker – commercials, music videos, event videography, all pay for someone with directorial and/or cinematographic skillset; write for a TV series, ad copy, blog online. Put your talents to good – paid – use. You’re only going to continue attracting unpaid gigs & “favours” unless you stop treating your beloved creative field as something “to do on the side”.

Film Doctor - Excuses

3. “I have No Time / Will Continue (Finish) Tomorrow”

 You will never have time. You make time. And as clichéd, as it might sound, this is 100% true for almost everything in life – including working on your projects. The longer you leave it, the less likely it will get done.


4. “Things Might Change” / “I’ve been here for years” / “At Least I Get Paid Well” – You feel it’s time to change jobs but keep coming up with excuses why not to? Stop it right away! Yes, maybe your salary is satisfactory, but do you feel challenged at your work? Do you feel appreciated? Do you find it rewarding? Yes, things might change / get better. But what if they never do? Have you been telling yourself that for more than 6 months? If you know that this is not the best you can get, don’t settle for it – don’t sell yourself short. When you know it’s time to go, you must go. Whether it’s to start your own business, go freelance or move companies, accept that you might lose a bit of the comfort you’ve got right now and take that long-yearned-for leap.


5. “No One Notices Me”  

An excuse ‘justifying’ the lack of any progress on one’s project – “Oh, I worked so hard and have shown it to people but no one is investing in it yet” or “I keep sending my headshots but no one seems to notice me”. Well, why would you wait to get noticed?! Why don”t you try to attract attention yourself? Keep going!


Monday Prescription’ No.59 – When one doesn’t want to do something, s/he will find a million and one excuses not to. So, if you really want to make things happen, no more “buts”/”tomorrows”/”no time” – start making your dreams happen right now.

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Any questions/thoughts/experiences of your own??? Leave a comment below!
Have a great week!


The Film Doctor Team
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