How many times have you seen this phrase used to describe artists of all types? They used to be cool before they “Sold Out.” As humans, we feel that people who make it big or get recognized by the mainstream are no longer legitimate. All of a sudden, whatever they were doing is no longer valid. The critics want to do whatever they can to discredit an artist because this artist, who was recently unknown, is now in the limelight. Money and fame have a way of tainting what was once good and pure. When a writer is writing for the love of writing, it is beautiful. When a singer is singing and does so for the love of performing it is beautiful. When any type of artist is living out their passion it is beautiful. Then the artist is recognized, and they are no longer an artist.
I am new to the whole public figure, speaker, and writer scene. I see both ends of the spectrum. I see those who are down in the trenches, writing and speaking for the love of it. I see those who have been recognized and stayed true. I look up to many of them. Then I see others, and their blogs are littered with advertisements. It appears as though you are in a modern-day infomercial on the web. They are pimping themselves, their work, and anything that will bring them money. Their blog got some attention, and they got a book published, and now there are so many ads on their site. It really shows you what they are in it for. They bring in whatever gimmick they need to make a dollar. Have they “Sold Out” in the real sense of the term?
As Christians, we are told that our flesh wants one thing while our spirit wants another. No matter what you believe in or choose not to believe in, you can see this in life. I know this truth to be true in my own life. I have seen this many times. I pray that God will keep me close to Him. That my desires would not be my own. We lose focus on why we started writing or speaking in the first place. Too often, attention leads to fame and the chance to earn more money. The challenge is what you do when that attention arrives?
As the head of my household, I want to provide for my family, and I believe there is nothing wrong with that desire. My fear is where you lose track of providing and what is excess. It is like asking someone what a good person is. We all think we share the same definition, but we don’t. I believe that those who succeed do so because they surround themselves with the best people. That is one belief and is often true. Talent will only take you so far.
I believe that those who find success and keep it do so because of those around them. In other words, they have a mentor or mentors. They have people to keep them focused and grounded. These mentors do not benefit financially from their role as a mentor. They could care less about money. You see the right mentor is there objectively to look out for the welfare of the person they mentor and not for themselves. The true heart of a mentor ultimately wants what is best for the person. This does not always involve money and the mentor knows that. What are your thoughts? Why do you mentor?