Non-Career Advice is a series that asks people - young, old, and in a range of occupations - for words of wisdom unrelated to work, career-building, dollars, or getting ahead.
Deb Filler / Writer + performer + comedian
Also: Singer / teacher / world-class cook
Celebrate all that you have — including your complaints. “My mantra is, I’m so lucky. Feeling lucky — celebrating that — is something that was handed down to me, because my father was an Auschwitz survivor. Day to day, it’s easy to complain. I could list 20 things right now: My computer is too slow. My feet are cold. The window needs repairing. I didn’t want the tobiko on my sushi today. Listen to that: it’s all so incredibly unimportant. There are people in the world who live on 20 cents a day, who live in fear or in garbage, or are dead by the time they’re 30. What the hell have I got to complain about? We have freedom. We have choices. We can be artists. It makes me think, I’m so fortunate to have these problems. It’s about perspective, and remembering that we have a responsibility to give back on whatever level we can. Be generous. Volunteer.
Also: be a good listener. Connect with people emotionally and intellectually and physically and spiritually by putting your entire body into listening to them. Be completely awake.”