Remember The Truth?!
Remember truth? The national campaign aimed at eliminating teen smoking in the US?
Since its launch in 1998, “truth” has produced TV and digital content to encourage teens to reject tobacco and unite against the tobacco industry.
sidenote: I cannot be the only one who remembers their Debi Austin “Voicebox” commercial it’s still on YouTube …as a kid, you mean you still wanna try a cigarette after seeing Debi Deb?! Issa no for me.
Anyway – In addition to its tv ads, “truth” had an #online presence and employed guerrilla marketing. Their grassroots #marketing was done with a team of “truth tour riders” who were sent to popular music and sports events across the country every summer.
I auditioned to be a truth tour rider on one of those summer tours. This was the video I produced as the second application round required a 3min intro video.
That plan didn’t quite work…at least not for that specific project, but I was able to up-skill. I also had a growing library of footage that I was able to repurpose. I hadn’t quite realized this at the time, but I was creating a portfolio and building my experience in ways that would serve me in and out of the workplace.
It was during this time when I realized I had an interest in marrying my background in education with my appetite for storytelling and curating intimate experiences. But it was also during this time where I was still unclear of my own truth and therefore could not fully respect what I uniquely had to offer.
Looking back, I was unaware of how each juncture in my journey was actually shaping me. Mandatory seasons.
I was so fixated on specific, end “outcomes” that I had no interest in, or vision of, all that was in front of me. I couldn’t see the gifts in the present. I was not conscious of, therefore, I could not appreciate the truth. And as cliche as it may sound, the truth is we’re always right where we belong.
While this was not a time that everything was perfect in my life, there were perfect moments that made everything else fade to black. Seriously. There were people, experiences, places, moments, interests that made me come alive.
My Truth Campaign video, and everything that went into creating it, made me come alive. It was during this period (2009-12) that I took more interest in media production.
But I robbed my own joy and stunted my growth
- Because I didn’t remember the truth.
- Because I hadn’t fully acknowledged or embraced all of my “selves.”
- Because I didn’t see the value in life’s baby steps.
- Because I’d shrug my shoulders, walk away and switch up the plan if I heard more “NOs” than I cared to.
- Because I felt like “security” was from a source outside of myself.
- Because fear.
- Because. because. Because. The list can go on…
But…because each moment of our lived experience has played out in the exact order and timing that it has, we have an opportunity to now mold (first in the mind) this moment into our own Pink Print (yes, I am still a Nicki Minaj fan. And no, I won’t get over it)
But seriously. We get to use the now to create the next. But we should never forget to celebrate the now, celebrate our milestones in the now – and they don’t always have to be professionally related.
And our milestones most certainly don’t always have to be made public. We should never forget to honor the space between no longer and not yet. I know that space well, I always tried to run from it. It was never good enough for me.
But now I know who and where I am right now, is just fine. Right now is a choice. Sometimes when things in the right now aren’t as we’d wish them to be, we try to escape to the past and hold onto how it was in the ‘good ol’ days”…or point the finger at why someone or something back then was the cause of our undesirable here and now.
In other moments, we’ll seek to be whisked away to a far reaching future; one that leaves behind the unwanted here, yet again. But the truth is, here is all we’ve got. And it is from right here where we can choose to be fully alive…while we’re alive.
As I look back on all of the footage I’ve collected over the years, I am reminded of what it feels like to be fully alive…I’m reminded of who I am and what’s possible when I’m tapped into that which awakens me.
And that is all I’m choosing moving forward. Choosing what makes me come alive. Choosing to remember truth. Choosing to ignite truth and make spaces where others learn to come alive while they’re alive too. That’s why you’re invited here. I’d like you to journey with me. The evolution will be televised…