Bring Your Own Plum to the Elevator

Hello gorgeous!

I’m writing from Toronto. From my Toronto condo. From… my… Torcondo? 😉 Heh heh.

This is the final leg of this nearly month away from home and as I spend another few days seeing coaching clients, meeting with lovely groups of people who get together regularly for accountability and ninja badassery, and generally enjoying the way more relaxed pace of this place, I wanted to share a story that came from my Friday Toronto ninja meet-up (group photo here).

One of these lovely humans was sharing a story about how she was headed up to the roof of her building to enjoy a really beautiful day. She had grabbed a bag of chips and a plum, then hopped on the elevator, where she encountered a neighbor.

“Oh, I see you have a plum to balance out the chips,” she said.
“What’s that?” the ninja responded.
“It’s healthier,” was her reply.
“Oh,” our ninja said with a shrug, looking down at the plum in her hand. “No. I get thirsty. I like the juice. It’s refreshing!”
“Sure. And you have it so you feel less guilty,” the neighbor concluded.

Now, this convo on the elevator obviously wasn’t about the entertainment industry or our Self-Management for Actors work or anything like that, but it was a fascinating analysis of how — after our ninja was left alone with her bag of chips and her plum — she looked at these things with a bit of a question mark that didn’t exist when she snatched ’em up from her kitchen to joyfully head up to the roof that day.

When your sense of enoughness is solid, your awareness that every person brings his or her OWN issues to the elevator becomes the takeaway. You know why you chose what you chose. You know what projection from another person looks and feels like. And you know how NOT to take on someone else’s relationship with a plum or any other damn thing.

As y’all know if you’ve been keeping up with my posts here and at Instagram about my #mindbody healing work, one of the big items I’m addressing is not picking up ANY crap that’s not mine. This is challenging for me since one of the most efficient ways for me to help *anyone* is to just take away their stress whenever possible.

Yeah… that’s me taking on a zillion plums in every elevator, ever.

And just like the lovely Toronto ninja knew those issues about the purpose of the plum were her neighbor’s issues and NOT hers, part of our work in ANY room we enter (whether it’s a room the size of an elevator, a cold casting office, or a giant theatre bursting with excited fans) is to take ownership of our own plums and NOT of anyone else’s.

What do you bring into the room with you? What do you take on that actually belongs to others? And how can you set better energetic boundaries so that you’re protecting your craft, your creative soul, and your very enoughness even in casual convos?

I’d love to know! Jam with me in the comments below!

Hope you’ll join me for one last Facebook Live of this tour I’m on! I’ll be broadcasting from the Torcondo on Wednesday at 12pm PDT right over here and I’d love to chat with you about boundaries, enoughness, and any LAST questions you may have about our life-changing 100-day challenge, Get in Gear for the Next Tier. Because — that’s right — our LIVE round starts Friday and that means we’re closing registration (yes, CLOSING. You will NOT be able to come inside, experience this fab summer school experience, and join in the LIVE calls with us unless you’ve enrolled by Thursday at 10pm PDT)!

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So, any questions you may have about mentorship (scoring free coaching with ME as a bonus of your qualified enrollment), our schedule, or making the most of this time we’ll share, this will be your last shot to catch me for a Q&A before I fly back to Los Angeles!

Woo HOO! So excited! (Check out the Welcome Kit if you want to map out the dates for our live calls and be sure the timing is right for you. Whether you’re joining us for these amazing 100 days now or not, you’ll get great tips for creating lasting change in that PDF.)

We have a phenomenal group of badasses returning and starting up for the first time with us and I’m over the moon thrilled for the depth of enoughness we’ll explore, bringing new confidence to your brand, your business savvy, and of course, your boundaries!

All my maple leaf love,


Bonnie Gillespie is living her dreams by helping others figure out how to live theirs. Wanna work with Bon? Start here. Thanks!

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13 Comments

  1. Karolina May 29, 2018 at 1:14 am

    Loveeeee this. Just what I needed to hear, as I’ve been witnessing that so much.

    Reply
  2. DawnForbes May 29, 2018 at 1:22 am

    This is something that I have always had issues with in the past. Whenever someone has a problem, I jump into gear to solve it for them. Robbing them of the joy of figuring out their own solution. But, I am getting better! I remember a story that I once heard about monkeys on your back – and, I don’t allow other people’s monkeys to hitchhike on my back anymore….. or at least I try not to. 🙂

    Now I will remember not to take on other people’s projections on my plums. My reasons are my own – I am learning how to own those reasons. (haha – that’s a funny sentence)

    Reply
  3. Mariann Aalda May 29, 2018 at 1:27 am

    I make a point to focus on my breathing before I walk into the audition room…and something that makes me happy….and walk into the room with that energy.

    Reply
  4. Tonya Kay May 29, 2018 at 6:37 am

    You are in my head.

    yesterday I produced/directed/starred in the biggest on-camera production of my life. Big fucking deal for me with 10 crew, a wiley location and extreme artistic and skill challenges for every department on this high-concept project. 9 out of 10 of us were flying high after – “we did something cool”! One – one (very important) person says to me that so-and-so department was bad at their jobs and “at least they were free”. There’s the plum.

    At this point, all the crew is wrapped and I, my co-producer, a composer, Foley artist/sound designer and post production house continue to kick ass 24/7 to Deliver a final in 12 DAYS!

    It was rude of that crew member, who’s job is over in one day, to cast a sliver of doubt where previously there was only team celebration. hey it was rude of them to make poor commemts about a department to the director at all. That’s his bag of chips – not mine. I don’t even eat chips.

    So as I continue my hustle 24/7 to see this project though, I’ll keep this analogy in mind. I do admit, I still hear that one sliver of doubt in my mind loud and clear though. Rationalization helps but I think action will be the only thing to place that voice firmly in the background of my work.

    Reply
    1. Millie Jean Warren May 29, 2018 at 9:36 am

      Ooo, that experience is such a gunky one! Like, crew talking about crew on set. I always feel like I have to either side with them, or defend the person being talked about. And then it’s like, “Well, shit, how is this person going to respond to me defending so-and-so?”

      How did you respond during the encounter?

      Reply
  5. Heather Alexander May 29, 2018 at 8:48 am

    People do this daily! Sometimes I set them straight “that wasn’t my thinking” sometimes I ignore them because I know they’re probably not equipped to understand a different way of thinking.

    Reply
  6. Millie Jean Warren May 29, 2018 at 9:31 am

    Dude. YES. It’s so interesting when other people place their insecurities and personal justifications onto you. To somehow feed their narrative. I get it. It’s their lens. It’s just so interesting!

    “When your sense of enoughness is solid, your awareness that every person brings his or her OWN issues to the elevator becomes the takeaway. ” Yes. A hundred times yes! 😀

    Super relevant for me. Just this past weekend, I was sharing with my family that I had an awesome weekend of shooting a short film I wrote, co-directed and played a principal role in. It’s for a local film festival! I was showing my mom a few BTS pictures. This short is a bit of a critique of “modern American beauty,” so it’s important to the plot that my character wears a crop top (so that my chubbalicious tummy shows).

    My mom looks at the picture and says, “Is that you?”

    I was a bit stunned because it’s not what I was expecting. I said, “Yeah!” and the conversation kinda petered out. I had to really have a moment with myself. Telling myself that nothing about this comment reduces me. Happiness is an inside job and I’m fucking stoked about this project. That external validation isn’t needed. I have an incredible crew and a talented cast. A strong script. Relevant and resonating themes. So many people are fucking stoked about this. Including me.

    I know my mom is self conscious when it comes to her body. In the past, she’s made some self-degradating comments regarding her weight. And I have a feeling my acceptance and confidence with my chubbalicious body makes her uncomfortable. Maybe confused. Maybe baffled. I do hope to lead by example. But I also think she has some judgments about my fat.

    I actually cried when I got home. Even though I started off strong at not accepting her plum, I realized my plum became poisoned. I started to feel like I wasn’t enough. Like, my efforts didn’t make them proud. Like, there was no interest in my endeavor.

    After a small cry, my husband and I talked and I am accepting that it’s okay.

    So maybe they don’t understand or appreciate it just yet. But that’s their plum. I know my plum is still thick and juicy. Like I learned in GIGFTNT, I can’t please everyone. Focus on the 1/3 that’s already hyped about you. 🙂

    Reply
    1. Jennifer May 29, 2018 at 10:29 am

      Bonnie! Thank you for this article today. This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot, and the story you shared put it so simply that it will be easier for me next time when I encounter these situations.

      @Millie – Oh man, isn’t it the hardest when these kinds of projections come at you from the people you love? I personally find that these throw me off my “enoughness” the most, which probably means there is inner work for me to do in that regard. Because some of that stuff can be so wired for a long time in myself (especially with parents) it makes it hard for me to set boundaries and not go looking for validation even from them. I too have had to go home, have a cry, realize it’s not my stuff and send it back out into the universe for it to deal with (I literally imagine all those insecurities from whoever it’s come from and let it float out of my body). Anyway, I totally get you!

      Reply
  7. Heather May 29, 2018 at 10:27 am

    Millie (that was also my mother’s name. She was the most amazing person ever!) It’s especially hard when family comments (or doesn’t) When I asked one of my sisters for her HONEST feedback on my headshot, she about got sick. It took her several minutes to find the courage to tell me that I looked “smirky” -a quality she detests. But, I praised her for her honesty and told her that it doesn’t upset me. I even told her that I can make a decent living and joyfully portray “smirky”. I cleaned the plum and gave it back to her.

    Reply
    1. Millie Jean Warren May 29, 2018 at 4:54 pm

      Ooo Heather, I LOVE that. Like, “Here, let me polish that plum for you!” 🙂

      Reply
  8. Ninja Erin May 29, 2018 at 4:51 pm

    I love seeing how this article resonated with so many of you!!

    Dawn – setting those boundaries is sooooo important. Glad to hear you’re actively working on keeping others’ projections away from your plums! 🙂

    Mariann – that’s some awesome advice for reclaiming your energy before an audition.

    Tonya – I know how unfair it feels when someone — especially someone you respect — plants that seed of doubt. It sounds like nothing will deter you from making this project the best it can be, and I so applaud you for that! And now you know what you can expect should you choose to work with that person again.

    Millie – my heart goes out to you. Our family is our family and even though we can be rock solid in our enoughness, it’s disheartening when the people we love the most just don’t *get it*. I’m happy to hear that your GIGFTNT work helped you take a step back and recognize that that’s on THEM, so that you can reclaim your joy and excitement for this project! <3

    Jennifer - LOVE that visualization of letting someone else's insecurities float out of your body!!

    Reply
  9. Greg Freeman May 29, 2018 at 6:23 pm

    I hesitate to even post this publicly but I can’t help but think about how I never want to enter the black vs white racial debate or the conservative vs liberal debate that is always going on. It seems like people must be bringing their own stuff to each of my interactions with them. That doesn’t have to be my deal but as a leader, I’m expected to have some kind of say and people interpret any post or action as me picking sides…
    I dunno. Just what I thought of.

    Reply
  10. Loralee M. Tyson June 4, 2018 at 2:27 pm

    This is so wise. Thank you for pointing this out, because I definitely take A LOT of things people say that are motivated by their own insecurities personally. I usually get to a place (several hours later) where I see that it wasn’t about me, but if I can realize it in the moment, that would save me a lot of gerbil on the wheel time in my brain.

    Reply

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