Magic In The Unguarded
Not many people look to Amy Schumer for wisdom, but in a recent appearance on The Moment with Brian Koppelman, she proved to be as thoughtful as she is funny. I was struck by one insight in particular.
She believes there is a magical first phase in an artist's life when one still doesn't know how to be more guarded because he or she doesn't understand what might push people away. Lena Dunham is a prime example, she says.
It got me thinking about newness versus this state of being unguarded. New undertakings and relationships tend to have a shine in that honeymoon phase and sometimes they lose their luster. As an artist, I agree that some of my best art–whether a song, story, or segment– has come from moments when I'm unfiltered. As a professional, some of my best work has come from unguarded moments in fast-paced operations.
I contend we can (and should) draw from the exhilaration of the unknown and the energy of the new even when we're deep into a task or experience. Continuing to challenge ourselves, even in a familiar setting, can keep us from becoming too guarded and simulate that magical newness that produces fresh and unusual ideas.
I think that's one reason why Amy Schumer, a decade since she first appeared on Last Comic Standing, continues to be as edgy and funny as ever.