My life’s work is to leave Hollywood better than I found it.

To help creatives live the lives of their dreams, telling the stories they were born to tell at the highest possible tier for their reach, healing the world through creating meaning out of strong emotions.

I am not an activist. I am, however, a leader. When I marched at the Take Back the Night protest in grad school, I was singled out from thousands of students by a reporter to go on camera and passionately share why I felt this demonstration was important. I did not shy away from explaining that as a rape survivor, I could not NOT be there. I could not NOT speak up.

But my zone of genius is in helping *you* reach your peak of visibility. To get *you* the audience of millions, whose lives you can touch with your work. To help YOU lead. And while marching and protesting and passionately yelling was very much a part of my life HALF MY LIFETIME ago, as I near 50 and have spent the better part of the past two years recovering from bedrest and hospitalization, my impact NOW is best wrangled with my writing, here. And in the Zoom classes I lead in the dojo. It is my money that has more power than my body, physically out there. It is my work as a lighthouse that helps those who look to me for that guidance.

I sent out a couple of emails recently. One about how white privilege means having OPTIONS. Another — to our members — about how we may not know the right thing to do, but we will not shy away from the tough questions. I’ve been watching others out there getting it wrong. Being prescriptive from their position of privilege without listening… without leaving room for the possibility that they’ve got it wrong.

One thing I do well is leave room for finding out how to get it right. Or more right. I come at things with a baseline of curiosity and I add to that my training as a journalist to research the heck out of things, my empiricist tendencies to help me not make assumptions, and my ability to dispassionately label and compartmentalize so that even the stickiest situations can be examined fully. Fairly. Bless all that Libra in my chart!

I’ve been having conversations with people I trust and even some strangers to check in with the big question: How can I best serve? And for me, service looks like continuing to support your dreams and your work to get to live them out. So I will continue to meet with the students of JFDI with Bon in a few hours (yes, you can still join us and pay what you’d like if you have a business you want to get off the ground). I will continue to prep those of you joining me for the Content Plan-a-Thon on Saturday (yes, there’s still room if you’d like to work up a year of content with me). I will continue to jam in the dojo with everyone who uses this space not only to build the showbiz life of their dreams but also to process *everything* that is happening right now.

If it helps — as you’re wondering about the relevance of a showbiz career at a time like this — I’ll ask you to think of how influential people at the top of their game can be. I’ll ask you to look at that level of leadership and all its power. I’ll ask you to flash forward to your true north vision and consider the impact your voice can have — not just now — but when we get you THERE.

Please, when you feel overwhelmed and powerless, stop, take a breath, get offline — remind yourself that you are: “Creator, not consumer” — find a way to be of service, and remind yourself that this is what leadership feels like sometimes. It’s sticky. It’s uncertain. It’s wobbly. It’s also willing to stay the course in the macro while changing course as needed in the micro. There is purpose in your choice to become a creative.

What I know for sure is that YOU ARE built for this. You wouldn’t have been called to this career at this time in life if not for the fact that you absolutely have the ability to lead with your creations. That you *will* be a part of massive change in our lifetime.

Your art can change the world. It’s actually the greatest impact many of us will ever have.

I’m here to support you in that. ALWAYS.

Now’s no time to feel small in all of this. It’s time to LEAD ON! Share how you’ll do that in the comments below. Share how I can support you in this.

Let’s make history, y’all.

Bonnie Gillespie autographed the internet


Enoughness is an inside job… and sometimes you need a guide to find your way there. Let Bonnie Gillespie get you started.

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5 Comments

  1. Avatar Sean Frost June 2, 2020 at 12:08 am

    One of the things I most look forward to is, when I am at a higher tier, or higher enough that when people come up to me and ask for autographs or they recognize me or whatever, taking a moment and showing them some kindness. Because I know what it feels like win I pass by Stone Cold Steve Austin on a movie set and he offers his hand and says a pleasant good morning, and what it is like with the world wrestling entertainment heavyweight champion, when I ask if he is who I think he is, is interested in my name. These as one singer said, Are moments that “you’ll never remember but they’ll never forget.” It’s just that one moment that you can show just a little care, a little kindness, a little love to a fan can literally take them off the edge of an abyss. Or just brighten their day. They can say “My life sucks, but remember this time the Bonnie Gillespie shook my hand at a conference and smiled and told me to keep creating.“. And so they do. Or I get to that certain level and I show some kindness then later on they find out my spiritual beliefs and maybe they say to themselves “Well, maybe not all of those Christians are jerks. Maybe there’s something more to it than I thought.” Or maybe they just think, “Hm. Nice guy. Not nearly as intimidating as the bad guy as he plays. Kind of funny, actually.” And then smile.

    I will lead by showing love. Showing kindness. And generosity. And with service. Or trying to. I not perfect. I’m human. But I can make some sort of effort.

    What can you do, Bonnie? Just keep being straight with gentle but firm correction, as ever.

    Reply
  2. Avatar Sean Frost June 2, 2020 at 12:11 am

    (Addendum: I guess one big goal is to use whatever God-given influence I have, now and in the future, to help make some positive difference in somebody’s life.)

    Reply
  3. Avatar Jaye Restivo June 2, 2020 at 9:24 am

    Now is really the time for me to help keep the world healthy through comedy.
    Writing. Improvising. Collaborating.
    Thank you Bonnie, for being there.

    Reply
  4. Avatar Kellye Rowland June 2, 2020 at 11:54 am

    What I want to do is to continue to amplify black voices over my own. I want to take a fucking seat and LISTEN to people in the black community. And then ACT guided first by THEM and THEIR voices. I know you talk about being a leader but the very seat of my soul is telling me to first listen. And hear. And I feel 100% certain that if I do that, the way for me to lead will show itself to me.

    I also want to thank you for making your sacred space in the Dojo OPEN TO THIS REALITY. The fact that you’re not shying away from “being political” just cements even more that this is where I belong. This is our world. I want to be involved in making it better, wherever I land, in whatever capacity I can do so. Thanks Bon.

    Reply

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