There’s always two things. There’s the thing that happened. And then there’s the story you tell yourself about the thing that happened. It’s tempting to think that the story you tell yourself about what happened is the thing that happened, but it’s just the story. And the story is up to you.
Consider a low paying or otherwise less desirable gig. Here’s two stories you can tell yourself:
1. This leader is a jerk and he’s underpaying us. The music is no good. I really shouldn’t be here and this is beneath me. Why don’t I get called for the big gigs? I play better than those other guys. It’s all politics.
2. This gig is easy. I may as well focus on a couple of little things on my sound and get a few bucks in my pocket. Won’t be here for long so let’s just get what we can out of it. Ain’t much money in this kind of work so I’d better be on the lookout for the next thing.
A self help guru is probably going to tell you that story number two is the “true” one. That’s the wrong answer. They’re both true. The second one is just more useful. And if you have a choice of stories to tell yourself, why not pick the most useful one?