Film and Family

Ep.29 - Expectations vs. Reality

February 05, 2021 Kent & Anna Thalman
Film and Family
Ep.29 - Expectations vs. Reality
Chapters
Film and Family
Ep.29 - Expectations vs. Reality
Feb 05, 2021
Kent & Anna Thalman

Today Anna and Kent discuss how expectations differ from our realities. Our experience leading up to and during something, can be either great or horrible, depending on how we depict it. We don't know how circumstances are going to turn out, which is reality. Listen in to determine whether or not your own expectations are serving you or creating unnecessary anxiety or disappointment, and what you can do to help yourself if they are.  

This podcast is owned and sponsored by Invisible Mansion Pictures. For more resources, visit us at: www.invisiblemansion.com

Show Notes Transcript

Today Anna and Kent discuss how expectations differ from our realities. Our experience leading up to and during something, can be either great or horrible, depending on how we depict it. We don't know how circumstances are going to turn out, which is reality. Listen in to determine whether or not your own expectations are serving you or creating unnecessary anxiety or disappointment, and what you can do to help yourself if they are.  

This podcast is owned and sponsored by Invisible Mansion Pictures. For more resources, visit us at: www.invisiblemansion.com

Ep. 29 – Expectations vs. Reality

[00:00:00] Kent Thalman: [00:00:00] Hi, I'm Kent 

[00:00:01]Anna Thalman: [00:00:01] and I'm Anna. 

[00:00:02] Kent Thalman: [00:00:02] And This is film and family. If you are a filmmaker and you're ready to take your relationship with yourself and your film career to the next level you are in the right place, hit subscribe to never miss an episode. 

[00:00:13]Anna Thalman: [00:00:13] Let's jump right in. 

[00:00:14] Kent Thalman: [00:00:15] Welcome to episode number. 

[00:00:19]Anna Thalman: [00:00:19] I don't know what it is 

[00:00:20] Kent Thalman: [00:00:20] we should do that. 30. ish 

[00:00:23] Anna Thalman: [00:00:23] Yeah, somewhere around there. yeah, we want to talk about expectations versus reality today, but before we do that, we'll give you a quick update. As we have said that we would on our feature film that we're working on, by the time this podcast is released, we'll probably be working on production because we're shooting this Saturday.

[00:00:47]And this podcast gets released on Friday. So by the time you're listening, we may be shooting an airplane, 

[00:00:55]Kent Thalman: [00:00:55] okay. That sounds bad. 

[00:00:58] Anna Thalman: [00:00:58] Yeah. I guess that does sound bad. [00:01:00] 

[00:01:00]Kent Thalman: [00:01:00] Well, we have talked about expectations before on this podcast. We have an episode called expectations when to drop them and when to keep them.

[00:01:09]Anna Thalman: [00:01:09] Yeah, I forgot about that. 

[00:01:10] Kent Thalman: [00:01:10] Yeah. But. This is a very different episode from that expectations podcast episode, because that one was about people and our expectations of others. What is this one about? 

[00:01:22]Anna Thalman: [00:01:22] this one's about kind of fine tuning your expectations to be beneficial as opposed to leading to anxiety or, Disappointment are the most common feelings that can come from expectations that need some adjusting.

[00:01:37] Kent Thalman: [00:01:37] Yeah. So this isn't really about expectations of people, although it could be,

[00:01:42] Anna Thalman: [00:01:42] it could be yeah

[00:01:42] Kent Thalman: [00:01:42] it's just expectations that we have of our lives and our circumstances and those sorts of things all around us. 

[00:01:49] Anna Thalman: [00:01:49] Yeah. This was 

[00:01:49] Kent Thalman: [00:01:49] Ourselves Maybe 

[00:01:50]Anna Thalman: [00:01:50] stemming from some realizations that I had this week that just felt like they would really benefit a lot of. My clients, honestly, like [00:02:00] things that they've been bringing to me and things that they've been experiencing, even friends that I've talked to, have brought up things along these lines. So I just wanted to share, and Kent and, I've had some good discussion about it. so we want to share some of our insights and hopefully it'll help you release a little bit of that anxiety and not depression, anxiety, and. disappointment. If you're experiencing that 

[00:02:24] Kent Thalman: [00:02:24] disappointment can be depressing 

[00:02:26] Anna Thalman: [00:02:26] and just kind of, yeah. I could kind of see where you are on that scale, where your expectations are. So first of all, what is an expectation? 

[00:02:36]Kent Thalman: [00:02:36] Are you asking me? 

[00:02:36]Anna Thalman: [00:02:36] Yeah what do you think? 

[00:02:37] Kent Thalman: [00:02:37] Are you expecting me to answer that question?

[00:02:39]Anna Thalman: [00:02:39] I'm expecting you to give it a shot.

[00:02:41] Kent Thalman: [00:02:41] Oh Okay. So I think an expectation is something that we predict. Is going to happen. I was going to say hope, but sometimes we have hopes that we don't actually believe are going to happen,

[00:02:54] Anna Thalman: [00:02:54] yeah

[00:02:54]Kent Thalman: [00:02:54] which kind of makes them not actual hopes in my opinion, based on my definition of hope, but it's like [00:03:00] something we want to happen. It doesn't always happen, but I think an expectation is something we think is going to happen. So low expectations might be something that I think something I don't want is going to happen. Like, I don't want this movie to be bad, but I have low expectations. So I assume it's going to be bad. Whereas like, if I have a lot of hopes in a movie, it means I have high expectations. Cause I actually predicted it. At least I have an inkling that it could be really good. So an expectation. And I think there's degrees of expectations. there's some that we just take for granted, like, this movie will be good and we go in like, without any doubts that it's going to be good and those can be really disappointing and then we have some expectations that are like, we have no doubt that it's going to be bad. I keep saying movies, but obviously it could be anything. So it could be like, I know that Thanksgiving dinner with uncle so-and-so and cousin, you know, Tina or whatever is going to be really, really good or really, really bad. oR maybe I have mixed expectations. It could be good. It could be bad. I [00:04:00] expect, you know, my sister to bring up that time, I lost at Foos ball and cried when I was 12 years old. You know what I mean? Like there's things we expect, meaning we predict we have a degree of belief of their probability. 

[00:04:14] Anna Thalman: [00:04:14] Okay. Yeah. I think that's a good distinction. Like I think hope. As you said earlier is usually something we don't actually believe is going to happen. And it is a prediction about the future. 

[00:04:25] Kent Thalman: [00:04:25] Or Hope is something we do believe is going to happen. 

[00:04:28]Anna Thalman: [00:04:28] Well, I think often when we say I hope it's because we don't actually believe it's very likely, that's why we have to hope that it's going to happen.

[00:04:36] Kent Thalman: [00:04:36] But if I have hope in something that Actually to me, it comes from a place of faith or belief.

[00:04:40]Anna Thalman: [00:04:40] Yeah, that's true. That could be, 

[00:04:42] Kent Thalman: [00:04:42] so I think that's a 

[00:04:42] Anna Thalman: [00:04:42] the case

[00:04:43] Kent Thalman: [00:04:43] tricky, tricky. See how the same word can mean the exact opposite thing, depending on who's saying it it's crazy. 

[00:04:49]Anna Thalman: [00:04:49] And I like that you talked about high or low expectations and you talked about degrees because I think an expectation is like a weather forecast it's a [00:05:00] prediction about something that's outside of our control. That's in the future and it's based on ideally trends or tendencies in the past. So then the question becomes, do our expectations serve us. Are they valuable? And if so, how? 

[00:05:19]Kent Thalman: [00:05:19] Well, are you asking me? 

[00:05:21] Anna Thalman: [00:05:21] Yeah there's no one else in this room except our audience, but you guys can't say anything. You just have to listen. 

[00:05:29]Kent Thalman: [00:05:29] Well, I would say do our expectations service depends on the expectation. I'm just answering off the cuff here. I think expectations could serve us or they couldn't, maybe I think we're leaving that up to chance if we don't know how to do the thought work around them, or if we don't understand what our subconscious is expecting. Sometimes I think we don't realize that we are. Expecting certain things that are up to chance. 

[00:05:57]Anna Thalman: [00:05:57] I think a lot of people like I [00:06:00] don't want to get my hopes up, you know, or I don't want my expectations to be too high. I think if you look at a weather forecast, ideally, expectations lead to some, confidence or preparedness. So I think a good question to ask if you think about this as like a sliding scale and where are my predictions on this scale? Are they accurate? are they based on evidence? And I think we kind of have these tendencies to either be I came up with these terms, but like a pessimistic predictor or a positive predictor. we kind of tend to lean. A little heavy on one side or the other. So do you tend to imagine the worst case scenario or the best case scenario? either way. I think most of the time we tend to be a little off. I don't think everyone's super accurate with their predictions. Some people are very [00:07:00] good at this, but most of us lean kind of one way or the other.

[00:07:04]Kent Thalman: [00:07:04] Yup. 

[00:07:06] Anna Thalman: [00:07:06] Any thoughts to add? 

[00:07:08] Kent Thalman: [00:07:08] Well, I think that I was just thinking about how like, when our predictions are totally off, it results in either this really awesome experience or this really terrible experience where it's like, I'm expecting this to be this transcendent wonderful experience. And it was terrible. And it was actually a horrifying experience. everything went terribly wrong and it was traumatic. And then the other times you can be like, I think this is going to be terrible. I really, really don't want to do it. And then all of a sudden you're like, wow, this isn't so bad. And then all of a sudden you're like, wow, that was the best experience I've ever had ever. And it was really exciting. I think I've had lots of experiences on both sides actually of that spectrum. So in some ways it's kind of nice, like, you know, expectations kind of shake things up, or I guess [00:08:00] circumstances shake things up based on what your expectations are or are not. 

[00:08:03]Anna Thalman: [00:08:03] I think it's really interesting that you put it that way. Like the one is a wonderful experience and one is a negative experience because I definitely think you tend towards the side of, Not having very high expectations and then going into it. And you're like, Oh, this wasn't as bad as I thought, which is a good experience after the fact. But it's not a good experience before, because beforehand you're feeling all the anxiety of

[00:08:29] Kent Thalman: [00:08:29] yeah all sorts of negative emotions. And that was Probably one of my mantras growing up and in adulthood, I've always had to tell myself that 99% of the things I worry about never happen, which I still think is a very good mantra to keep in mind

[00:08:41] Anna Thalman: [00:08:41] yeah

[00:08:41] Kent Thalman: [00:08:41] because 99% of things we do worry about just never happened. but if we focus heavily on them, we might make some of them happen. but, on the flip side, yeah, I think you're right. That I stress out before many things that. turn out to be really great experiences. Like, I mean, oddly [00:09:00] enough marriage, which I had no conscious thoughts, I feel like that were like, Oh my gosh, marriage is going to be really, really hard, but something subconscious is going on because I was experiencing a lot of really weird anxiety while we were engaged. And then once we got married, like, You know, the more we got into the marriage, the more I was just like, this is great. the longer we're married, the more I enjoy it. And, we established that you feel the opposite, not just in terms of marriage, but just in general that like you have really high expectations of all things where you're like, man, as soon as, I'm at that point. I have that experience. I will be in Nirvana. I will be completely at peace with all things. 

[00:09:43] Anna Thalman: [00:09:43] I've never said that. Okay. 

[00:09:44] Kent Thalman: [00:09:44] That is Basically what you've said, you like, like if I can marry Kent. I'll be, I'll just never feel sad or want again, which was disappointing for you. And then if you, you know, it's like, Oh, I think [00:10:00] we were both wicked baby hungry when we were pregnant with Marshall, We really wanted a baby. And I think we were like, once Marshall's born, we'll have this cute baby. And we'll, we'll never be like those parents that are impatient with their children and, look tired of the grocery store and just don't appreciate all that cuteness sitting in front of them all the time. Which of course was false because we didn't anticipate the, interrogative, prisoner of war level. torture that sleep deprivation is and entails. so yeah, now we know why people look grumpy in the grocery store when they have little babies in their, grocery carts strolling around the grocery store. So, yeah, we established that you have really high expectations for most things, and sometimes you get a little low or disappointed, and I feel like I've got a lot of anxiety. Up two things. And then once I get there, I'm like, yeah, it's not going to kill me. This is pretty relieving. Actually. Now that we're in there, 

[00:10:59]Anna Thalman: [00:10:59] we're [00:11:00] probably the perfect duo to do this podcast because we both represent one side of this spectrum. And I agree, definitely you are the one to be hesitant, jumping into things. And I'm like, yeah, let's do it. This is going to be great. Let's go. And then we jump in and you're like, wow. Yeah, it is great. This is awesome. I'm like, Whoa, I don't know if I still want to do this. 

[00:11:27] Kent Thalman: [00:11:27] This is harder than I thought it would be 

[00:11:28] Anna Thalman: [00:11:28] This is really hard. So that's kind of our dynamic and we tend to balance each other out a little bit. but I think we've kind of seen how. Being a pessimistic predictor leads to a negative experience of anxiety, prior to whatever we're predicting and being an overly positive predictor leads to feelings of disappointment. usually after the case, when things are not as amazing. Or [00:12:00] perfect as we imagine that they will be.

[00:12:02] Kent Thalman: [00:12:02] Yeah. So I guess my question is, is there anything we can do about that in terms of like, do we just have to live on one side of the spectrum or the other, like, is that. Our lot in life that I'm always going to be like relieved and happy about things, but I'm gonna experience a ton of stress beforehand. And you're always going to be like experiencing super highs, leading up to a thing. And then once you get into it, it's like, this is hard. 

[00:12:29] Anna Thalman: [00:12:29] Yeah. I think it's, if you think of the weather forecast, and this is sort of a temperature gauge, you can just adjust your internal thermostat a little bit. if I can learn to adjust my expectations a little bit to the seasons, to, a temperature range that is more regular, For example, if there's one day that's a perfect, I don't know, 80 degrees with a cool breeze. That's maybe a little too hot. [00:13:00] Anyway. 

[00:13:00]Kent Thalman: [00:13:00] 80 degrees, you would say that's perfect weather. Some like it hot. 

[00:13:06] Anna Thalman: [00:13:06] then when it's cold, During the winter, every single day when I wake up and you know, we live in Georgia, so the winter's only a month long. And sometimes that month is spread out. There's a few scattered days here and there 

[00:13:20] Kent Thalman: [00:13:20] that might be idealizing it a little bit. We're in February, it's, it's still cold and it was cold December and January. So

[00:13:25] Anna Thalman: [00:13:25] I feel like it's kind of spread out. We've had warm days though. 

[00:13:27] Kent Thalman: [00:13:27] We did Have some warm days in December, actually. 

[00:13:29] Anna Thalman: [00:13:29] Yeah, 

[00:13:30] Kent Thalman: [00:13:30] 70, 

[00:13:32] Anna Thalman: [00:13:32] but if I'm expecting it to be. 80 degrees with a cool breeze every single day, because it's been that before and it was perfect and I loved it and I know that the weather is capable of being that perfect. Then I'm going to experience a lot of disappointment every time I wake up and it's cold. So I think ideally we can adjust our gauge so that. these predictions lead to preparedness, you know, with the weather [00:14:00] forecast, we don't expect it. We don't expect it to be perfect, but it gives us enough of a,

[00:14:06] Kent Thalman: [00:14:06] We have low expectations with the weather forecast.

[00:14:08] Anna Thalman: [00:14:08] It gives us enough of a heads up. And even without the weather forecast there's, sort of an internal, prediction. Let me just say that again, an internal prediction that we can make based on what season it is the place that we live and what we can expect to experience in that location. 

[00:14:28] that 

[00:14:29] Gives us an idea of when I'm going out, do I need to bring a jacket or an umbrella, or what kind of shoes do I need to wear? And so, 

[00:14:38]Kent Thalman: [00:14:38] well, I like this idea of dressing for the weather

[00:14:41] Anna Thalman: [00:14:41] Yeah

[00:14:42]Kent Thalman: [00:14:42] And this idea of saying. I can emotionally prepare myself well, for any sort of thing. And so we start to, I think that's where thought work really comes into play. where for a quick [00:15:00] review of those new listening to the podcast, one of the frames of mind that we have adopted. And Anna works with her clients on this paradigm, easy to understand, pretty complex to put into practice, which is why coaching is so important and valuable. It takes a long time to master this model, but the concept is our circumstances, trigger thoughts, our thoughts create feelings. Our feelings lead to our actions and our actions create our results.

[00:15:40] Anna Thalman: [00:15:40] Good job

[00:15:41]Kent Thalman: [00:15:41] But our thank you for that patronizing compliment, but our, circumstances do not create our thoughts. They just trigger the thoughts that we already believe. And so it's up to us to pull those thoughts from our subconscious mind, those thoughts that we've practiced all our lives [00:16:00] that are very worn in, and they have deep neural pathways that have been dug into our brains and we have to go, okay, I've got to damn that and, dig a new outlet, which is a new thought. And once you dig that new neuropathway and let your thoughts float in that direction. By practicing it over and over and over again, you've reprogrammed your brain so that you, kind of steer away from that old thought. And you're now fully onboard with that new thought and that's called thought work. And you know, that's just a whole discipline in and of itself. It's Too much to go into depth in this podcast. But when we're approaching this idea of expectations and lows and highs and anxiety that you might feel before or after something, these are all coming from our thoughts, our beliefs about those things, those beliefs might be positive or negative. That's the idea of the whole high and low expectation. So if I kind of get where [00:17:00] you're going with this, anna, I would say. In terms of dressing for the weather. we realized, we say, okay, I'm getting curious about my brain. And I'm getting just observant of. Where my feelings are at whenever I am about to prepare for a shoot. For example, I experience a lot of anxiety before shoots, and we were talking about this recently because I had a shoot yesterday and it was the second one in recent days. And for a while there, I wasn't doing a lot of shooting. I was doing a lot of producing and editing, so pre production post-production, but I feel a particularly high amount of anxiety. Before shoots. And when I get to the shoot, my adrenaline kicks in my mind, gets into the game. Usually footage starts to turn out pretty good, and I'm pretty happy with what I'm getting, not always. and there's always like, I look back and wish I'd done stuff differently and feel I need to learn from that experience. But. generally, it's almost never as [00:18:00] bad as I'm making myself feel. I get, you know, really like pre-game jitters pretty bad. 

[00:18:07] Anna Thalman: [00:18:07] Well, and sometimes it is an illogical fear. It's something that's not even possible.Like when it's a screening 

[00:18:13] Kent Thalman: [00:18:13] I experience majorly illogical fears before actually screening edits or short films or anything like that in school before I would screen every week, this was good for me because I had, I guess I had some strange drama going on in my brain. but I wouldn't have this fear that like, I'd be showing a homework assignment in class and that a naked person would be. In the assignment, in the edit somewhere, don't ask me how I thought that was possible because I didn't shoot any naked people. And I didn't include any of that kind of footage in my edit. but I was just like thinking what's the worst thing that could happen would be like, is that there's this the shot of something wildly inappropriate 

[00:18:54] Anna Thalman: [00:18:54] in your film while your showing it 

[00:18:56] Kent Thalman: [00:18:56] somehow in my film while I'm showing it to people that just shows how [00:19:00] bonkers, I guess my brain was, but.

[00:19:02] I just thought, what if, like, I don't know, a virus got on my computer and somehow stuck itself into the export or whatever. So as you can see that one's more illogical, but with this pre-shoot anxiety, we determined that it came from this thought that like, what have I got on set? And I just can't make it look at from from a director of photography perspective. And I feel this way as a director, In terms of acting, what do I do when I get on set and I can't make the image look the way I want, or as a director, what do I do when I get on set? And I can't get the performance that I feel like we need out of the actors and or what if the script just isn't working, we thought it was working and we're getting on set. And we're just like, Oh my gosh, this, this isn't really what we meant to say or do those are the, thoughts. And I guess the thought the belief is that that's possible, or that's very likely, that definitely generates a lot of anxiety for me. I'm feeling some right now, just talking about it.

[00:19:55]Anna Thalman: [00:19:55] Me too actually 

[00:19:55] Kent Thalman: [00:19:55] Well and you know, some people hearing this podcast, you might be like, yeah, [00:20:00] that's the worst feeling. That's probably coming from a couple of different places. One is just from experience being there, as a beginner, I remember often I would turn the camera on and just be like, what do I do? I just, it's just, isn't looking good. and I can't figure it out. A lot of that's gone away as I've gotten more and more experienced, but I still think there's a degree of like conscious competence that I'm experiencing where I'm like, it's not unconscious competence where I'm like, Oh yeah, I can just, if I got the lights and the cameras, I can just show up and make it look good, period, because I've just mastered this craft. I'm not to that point yet. Maybe there's no end to that point, but maybe it's a myth that I think I'll eventually get to a point where I'm not nervous anymore. Maybe all DP's feel a little nervous before these sorts of things. At least the good ones, or maybe not. Maybe there are people who actually learn a degree of conscious competence. I think I actually do feel a degree of unconscious competence in terms of my editing, but that doesn't mean that I don't feel some anxiety going into the edit either. [00:21:00] Now I'm just. Tangenting. 

[00:21:01] Anna Thalman: [00:21:01] Yeah. Well, I think it's interesting because we also tend to make predictions about how we're going to feel or what we're going to do. And that is something that is within our control. So we can make predictions about the weather and that's outside of our control or about circumstances outside of our control. And those predictions might serve us because we can't control them. We can only control our response to them so we can decide. Ahead of time, how we want to respond to what we anticipate will happen. However, how we're going to feel is within our control. And so I think it can be really valuable to decide that ahead of time it's a decision, not a prediction. So anything that's a circumstance we predict and plan for. Anything that's comes after that circumstance line in the model, which should be thoughts, feelings, actions, and results. [00:22:00] Those are decisions. So for example, with our feature film, I've intentionally done a lot of thought, work around, preparing for this shoot and decided ahead of time what I want to feel, what I want to feel as we're making it after we're making it. I practice these thoughts every day. I practice kind of visualizing it and I'm sure that there'll be times when I get on set and I forget, I forget the vision of what I was going to feel and what I decided, but because I've decided it and I have this as a daily practice, I can redirect back to that. And it's still, a decision that I think can bring me peace. And I've done this with, parenting too. I've decided. That I think I'm a good mom. I don't want to be trying to decide every single day. 

[00:22:49] Kent Thalman: [00:22:49] So What have you decided about the film? 

[00:22:51] Anna Thalman: [00:22:51] Well, I'll get to that. I just want to do the mom one first. Um, but I, at some point realized that I was always judging myself based [00:23:00] on. Either the behavior of my kids or how I felt about that particular day or my own behavior. And that it served me more to just decide I'm going to feel proud of myself as a mom. And I decided that I'm a good mom and that serves me. It doesn't mean that I become lazy or that I don't do the things that I want to do for my kids, because I believe I'm a good mom. I'm actually more likely. To act, according to that belief. so when my kids are upset with me and they say stupid mommy, and you're a bad mommy and kids say things like that, sometimes I feel totally fine saying, no, I'm not. I'm a great mom. I don't know what you're talking about. I think I'm a great mom and it doesn't bother me. So that's a decision. That's just one example with this film. I've decided that I'm going to feel proud of us, of our team, of everyone's [00:24:00] hard work and I'm going to feel grateful, so grateful for the opportunity. And I can predict the circumstance, what I think it's going to turn out to be. But even if it turns out to be the worst case scenario, as far as. Let's say we shoot the whole thing and then we lose the whole thing. Like we lose the cards or something. I can still feel grateful for the experience and everything I learned and everything that everyone did and still feel proud.

[00:24:25] Kent Thalman: [00:24:25] talk about anxiety Oh my gosh. Why would you say that? 

[00:24:27] Anna Thalman: [00:24:29] So that's just an example of one way of preparing in advance. Like my response. 

[00:24:36]Kent Thalman: [00:24:36] Yeah. Well, and I actually do think there's a lot of value in that despite my, sort of facetious. Poking those expectations can also lead to a lot of productivity. So for example, I think, I've seen this a lot. A filmmaker sets out with a very specific result in mind, and those can vary, those very specific results can vary. anyway, I've seen student filmmakers say we are going to win an [00:25:00] Emmy with this film. And they do it. In fact, most of the time when I see a pretty smart, talented filmmaker say, this is exactly what we're gonna do. We're gonna win an Emmy. 

[00:25:10] Anna Thalman: [00:25:10] We're going to get into this festival or do this exact thing, 

[00:25:13] Kent Thalman: [00:25:13] this specific festival and their thoughts all start to kind of revolve around that exact goal. It doesn't always happen, but I see it happen pretty often. And a friend of mine just DP to feature that came out last year, it got into Sundance and he posted on Facebook and said that The director had a very specific independent spirit award. The one for the independent features that are made for under 500,000, this one was made for under a hundred thousand, that particular award. They had the goal to get nominated for that award. It was a big deal. Independent spirit awards are no joke and they just got nominated for it. That movie went to Sundance, got bought. it was getting distributed at least by Neon. And just got nominated for the independent spirit award. I can't remember the name of it, for a sub $500,000 feature. [00:26:00] I mean, those guys are going places and they just wrapped on a production a few weeks ago on a, follow-up feature. That was, a little bigger so really exciting. But I guess my point is, is that when you say in your mind, okay, this is the goal and it starts to become the expectation that can serve you. And it can serve against you. So when I start to say, I'm imagining this transcendent, performance from an actor or an actress, and I'm like, Oh yeah, I'm gonna get on set or we're going to roll. We've wrote this great script. We've rehearsed with the actor. It's gonna be great. And then they don't deliver or you get on set and it's just not looking right. Or you're not feeling it in frame. you can use that to serve you, or you can let that. Kind of be like, Oh my gosh, this is outside of my control. And I think that if that's not the take, the expectation can, can become a standard and the standard can be really useful. It just lets you know, Oh that wasn't the take. I'm not ready to move on yet because I've already decided I'm going to be proud of this film. I've already decided that this movie is going to get into this [00:27:00] festival. I've already decided this is the kind of movie that's going to win this award. And that take wasn't that kind of a take. So that's helpful. It can be helpful from like a pragmatic side of things. as long as we just it's helpful, if we keep believing, we can get to that take, you know, we can get to that edit. We can get to that finished movie in the end. This is all about finishing the movie. I think in terms of more emotional ends, just as a side note, I don't think in terms of, Awards or festivals specifically, even though those might be good goals to set, they are good goals in my opinion. but, I really like thinking in terms of this movie that we're making right now, I specifically want it to inspire people to value their families more. I want them walking out of the theater or the living room or wherever they're watching and thinking I'm gonna wake up tomorrow and I'm going to be. A better son or daughter or parent. I'm just going to treat those people in my life a little better and value them a [00:28:00] little more. That is like the specific emotional goal. So once again, as I'm doing drafts on the script, as we're prepping the film, as we're looking at takes, that's the standard in my mind. But if we're not reaching that or if it doesn't feel like that's where we're hitting. my belief counteracts the anxiety or disappointment that could come from a take where it's like that, wasn't it but if I still believe oh yeah well, let's do a few more takes let's address this. Let's keep working toward it. that standard can serve me, I guess. I'm just seeing standards as a nice balance 

[00:28:29] Anna Thalman: [00:28:29] yeah It is it's a little bit different and that's a good realization that I just had, with. Sunday, I had this experience where I realized that, for a while, I've kind of not enjoyed weekends as much as weekdays. I think that, you know, I've just, I really like the work that I do. And I like the schedule that I have during the week with the kids and with the family and with my work and weekends were a little less structured and a little harder for me, but. I recently had a Sunday. That [00:29:00] was a perfect Sunday. It was restful. And I got to bond with my family and I had a spiritual, day at church. And at home, I got some work done as far as preparing to teach seminary, which is, you know, a volunteer thing I do during the week. And so it was a really great Sunday. It was better than I ever thought was possible for Sundays and 

[00:29:26] Kent Thalman: [00:29:26] because of recent experience. 

[00:29:27] Anna Thalman: [00:29:27] Yeah. And so I had that experience and I raised my standard for Sundays. I was like, wow. Now I know that this is what's possible, but I didn't just raise the goal in my mind. I Also raised my expectations and the next Sunday rolled around and it was not as perfect as that other Sunday, still pretty good Sunday, but. The nap didn't really happen. The kids were kind of rowdy. It was loud. it wasn't as restful. and I felt disappointed and I [00:30:00] was coaching myself and saying 

[00:30:02] Kent Thalman: [00:30:02] Let's just in a spirit of transparency, admit the word. I felt disappointed. Is a little bit of an understatement. Cause it got a little crazy at our house. 

[00:30:13] Anna Thalman: [00:30:13] I was pretty bummed. Yeah. Anyway. 

[00:30:17] Kent Thalman: [00:30:17] I just want to say that because I think some people, we all speak so lightly about these things. And I think that sometimes young adults, teenagers, older, married couples, whatever phase of life you're in, sometimes things get. Really nuts. Sometimes it's stuff you don't really want to put up on screen and show the world. you know, it's so yeah, when we say I felt a little disappointed that can lead to a lot of anger, it can lead to a lot of resentment that can lead to a lot of, saying or doing things. We don't feel super proud of a few hours later. 

[00:30:51] Anna Thalman: [00:30:51] yeah

[00:30:51]Kent Thalman: [00:30:51] So when we talk about feelings, People feel, feelings strongly. So I just, I don't know. I just want to point that out and say that [00:31:00] that's okay. I guess. 

[00:31:01] Anna Thalman: [00:31:01] Yeah. I'm not like trying to sugar coat it, I guess, but 

[00:31:04] Kent Thalman: [00:31:04] that's all I'm saying. 

[00:31:05] Anna Thalman: [00:31:05] yeah. That's good clarity. So Okay. It wasn't a totally bad day. It Didn't have to be a bad day, but it was because I had that expectation and I was so disappointed in that expectation. And I realized that I can have the goal. Like I can hold that standard of that Sunday as a goal that I'm working towards. And still something that I visualize that I think about that I planned for, because I want to plan for the best case scenario, because I want to create the best case scenario, but I don't want my expectation to become a demand for the best case scenario or feel like that should be how it happens. And that's how I deserve to have it happen because that's just setting myself up for. A pretty negative experience. 

[00:31:50] Kent Thalman: [00:31:50] So I want to invite the listener right now to think right now. in your mind about someone that, you know, I think we probably all know people on [00:32:00] all sorts of sides of the spectrum who is constantly disappointed, just seems like they're always complaining or finding fault in their circumstances. And now try and think about someone who is never disappointed or who seems always really happy with all these circumstances around them. 

[00:32:24]Anna Thalman: [00:32:24] Is this how you see you and me? 

[00:32:26] Kent Thalman: [00:32:26] No It's not, I'm not actually I don't think either of us are on that spec on either side of that spectrum that might sound 

[00:32:31] against 

[00:32:32] to a. What I was saying, but like, I know some people who are like, you could put a crayon in your mouth and draw a picture of a giraffe with your teeth and you might be the worst artist in the world. And they would think it's great. You know, that person in your life where you're just like, they find fault in nothing and no one. And they're just like, so overly praise giving. That you've totally lost all trust in their opinion. Cause you're just like, wow, I know at least [00:33:00] two or three people this way where I'm like, I can't trust anything you say because you just think everything's wonderful. and then I think about the people who I think have this really exceptionally good. Maybe not everyone has someone like this, but I can think of one or two people in my life who have an exceptionally good, at least from what I can see balance on this. They, have high standards and qualities of excellence, but at the same time, nothing seems to really get them down and they have this persistent contentment with like, Oh yeah. I mean, that stuff happens and like, cool. Yeah. Let's just roll with it. Yeah. I'm happy with that or, yeah, that's great. They're not like being phony or being like, that's the best thing I've ever seen or whatever, but they're like, They roll with everything in this remarkably content way where they're still like really effective people. I'm thinking of these people in my life that I can imagine. I want you to try and imagine different degrees, different people that pop into your mind when you think of people [00:34:00] who have a really healthy perspective on. What'd they seem to have a healthy subconscious in terms of the results they're getting out of their lives, the degree of contentment that they're experiencing and you can see it on sort of their outward, just the way they act and the way they behave. 

[00:34:16]Anna Thalman: [00:34:16] I think also just know yourself, and you can notice this sure. And other people, but where it's really gonna help you is to know what are your tendencies do you tend to be? And even though we use the term, or I came up with the term of like a pessimistic predictor versus a positive predictor, neither one is positive. in Its results that it creates as far as anxiety, or disappointment Because either creates a negative experience on the front or the back end. while you're saying, like someone might be complaining a lot after the fact, the other person's complaining a lot before the fact, and I'm worrying a lot before or after. And so I think just knowing your expectations are sort of on this dial, And you can see if your predictions are [00:35:00] incorrect frequently, or if you're experiencing disappointment or anxiety. Like I realized I was experiencing disappointment frequently and I was wondering, why does this keep coming up for me, now I know I just need to adjust my expectations a little bit because I'm over-ly positive in my predictions about the future. One last question to kind of wrap this up that I have. I'm just curious your thoughts on this. How do you think we could make a prediction on something we've never done before?

[00:35:28]Kent Thalman: [00:35:28] Well, and that's something I think a lot of us experience, anxiety about is, so what was your question? Exactly? How do we adjust? Wait,

[00:35:38]Anna Thalman: [00:35:38] how do you make a prediction on something you've never done before? Because a prediction is usually based on tendencies, you can look to the past and see what, you know, what is a realistic expectation to have. Like I know based on the past that I cannot expect my children to say yes, mommy, every time I ask them to do something, even though I also know they're capable of [00:36:00] that. And sometimes I want to expect that all the time. If I'm really looking at the facts, it's probably 50 50. 

[00:36:07]Kent Thalman: [00:36:07] Sure. so I guess it depends on what our expectations are about. If they're about another person, we can't necessarily change that person. That's a circumstance it's outside of our control, what people do. but if it's about, for example, an experience, I think if our contentment or satisfaction in that, or of that, The content that we experienced from that experienced is totally separate and independent from. Separate from an independent of that, having a hard time with my words right now independent of our experience. so our personal or independent of the circumstances of the experience, I should [00:37:00] say. So like our emotional experience can be whatever we want it to be. So if it's, Our experience parenting versus measured against the exact behavior of our children. Those two things can be completely separate. so I could have high standards for my experience of something and separate that completely from like, You know, some people could go to a theme park and the lines could be long. It could be wicked hot and all this stuff could be overpriced, but they could still have a great time. And some people would go to the same theme park on a slightly drizzly day where the lines are short, it's cool outside and they packed their own food and they didn't have to spend a dime and they could still be bummed out about everything and just totally disappointed in all the rides and all the people and all the, whatever you know, any degree of circumstances they could choose to be disappointed in it. So. I think it's good to have high expectations of our experiences because those are under our control. My emotional experience of something is under my control. And so I like to have a high expectation of [00:38:00] myself and my emotional experience of things and my achievements and results. And actions because I can control all those things. I might Not be able to control them perfectly on the first try, but I know that they are under my control. And if I master the model and I keep progressing, I can increase and improve upon those, emotional experiences. But the circumstances themselves, if that's where all of my focus is. And My expectations are that the circumstance be something very rote and specific and exact, then I'm setting myself up for either a lot of disappointment on the backend. Or my rational brain will recognize that my prediction is probably not going to be a hundred percent accurate on the front end, resulting in a lot of anxiety. Does that answer your question? You asked? 

[00:38:50] Anna Thalman: [00:38:50] I think those are some cool thoughts and something that

[00:38:53] is that a no, 

[00:38:56]think it answered the question. I think something inherent in what you [00:39:00] said is this idea that our circumstances can't make us feel bad. they don't have power over you. And just knowing that alone can really change your experience because what I see some people trying to do when they fear the future is control the circumstance or prevent the circumstance from even happening instead of preparing for it. Like you would prepare for the weather by dressing accordingly. They're trying to prevent the weather from happening. They're trying to change. Big things that are outside of their control, 

[00:39:34] Kent Thalman: [00:39:34] but what if it blank? Yeah. 

[00:39:37]Anna Thalman: [00:39:37] and it's like, yeah, you probably can't stop the thunderstorm from coming. and that's going to create anxiety. If you feel like you have to stop it, or you're going to have a negative experience because you feel like these circumstances have power over you, but they don't, nothing can make you feel bad. You decide how to respond to it. And that changes your experience of it. [00:40:00] And so instead of trying to, change the circumstance, or a lot of times people just avoid the circumstance, they try to kind of run away from situations where they're going to encounter that. Circumstance, which stops them from growing stops us from doing things we've never done before or things that might not turn out the way we want. And we just start to kind of repeat the same things that we know we can predict. instead of that, I think planning your response can be so powerful and knowing. Especially, if you feel a lot of fear about a specific outcome, really following that through and saying, what am I afraid of? What is the circumstance that could happen, that I'm afraid of? And how do I want to respond if it does, and then your mind can be at ease when you have sort of a plan. and it's not just this unknown art, we're very afraid of the unknown. and in most cases, our predictions, for example, with the weather [00:41:00] service, it means that we don't have to bring every single item of clothing for every imaginable type of weather, because I have no idea what it's going to be when I step outside my door. And I'm wearing shorts and I have long sleeves and I have everything possible for every weather, which is very cumbersome. That's overwhelming. Right? You can't prepare for everything, but if I'm not prepared and there's a little bit of rain, I can also just believe in my future self that. I can figure it out. I'll find a solution. so I think something that helps my, clients when I'm working on them with this kind of stuff is finding confidence based on your past. Sometimes looking back and saying, you know, I've handled things before that I wasn't expecting, or that were uncomfortable and I can do it again.

[00:41:49]Kent Thalman: [00:41:49] And on that same note, when it's something that you haven't ever done or experienced before, something totally new, then you can just still go to the past and [00:42:00] say, When was the last time you did something for the first time right, yeah. When was this? when have you also done something that you had never done before? And Was it so bad? and, you know, look at several examples of that. And I've heard, anything you can imagine, right? I've heard people have a lot of anxiety about people have anxiety about, Going to a new school or going to college, living on their own, anxiety about, a new job or be paid to do something you've never done before, or that you feel under qualified to do But the tricky thing about in the film industry, this skill of managing. These expectations and controlling our emotions around these things. Do the thought work is so invaluable because we're constantly doing that. We're constantly putting ourselves, at least if you're anything like us in situations where it's all new, every feature film is like creating a new [00:43:00] business. It's like building a startup from the ground up. That has its own product cycle. And that's intense. That's like some people do that once in a lifetime and they ride that business, their whole lives until retirement. And our job is to do that over and over and over. We're almost like venture capitalists. And so we've got earn and develop a high tolerance For this, doing things for the first time ever sort of stuff. And that can be really valuable and rewarding, honestly, to do that because it puts you in a situation where you're always growing. You're always telling a new story. You're always exploring new things and trying things in new ways. And, you know, I've seen the best think of the best music artists in history, and they were bold and sometimes they failed and flopped, but they were always trying things they'd never done before. the ones that stay safe and say, well, we're going to make this album sound like the last one, because it was a hit. They only get a few albums in before people are like, yeah, I've heard this and we can't keep [00:44:00] listening. And so that tolerance for going into the unknown means you're going to keep growing and advancing and you're going to stay relevant. You're gonna stay relevant. not just because of the opinions other people matter. You're gonna stay relevant because you're still serving people. You're still creating value for, the people around you. You're still telling stories that feel important and fresh. And articulating things in new ways because you're growing as a person you're growing as a filmmaker. and that's what those artists are doing. And I think that's just one example, but this is the case in all industries, even in the software industry, I've heard many people say I have to learn my job from scratch about every two years, because things just change. I have to learn a new software language. I have to relearn my job from the ground up, Someone asks you, can you do this? And you say, yup. And then you go learn how to do it because you don't actually know how to do it. I've had to do that many times with clients where they say, can you do this thing? the first time I had to do a lot of chroma key or green screen work, I was just like, yep, I can do that. And then I just spent hours trying to figure it out. [00:45:00] And, I regretted it a little bit because of the cost breakdown, but now I have this new skill and it actually feels really good to be like , yeah, I can't actually do that a few hundred hours later. I feel pretty competent at that particular skill. so yeah, I mean these things, it helps you become a more emotional adult. 

[00:45:18] Anna Thalman: [00:45:18] Yeah. So hopefully this episode was helpful to kind of. Put this into a metaphor that you can wrap your brain around and see where you are, where your tendencies are. Usually one of us, you know, usually we all lean towards one side or the other, which you can adjust, or you can just be aware of that awareness alone is valuable to see where you're at. So you can just kind of remember, Oh yeah, I usually. Start to feel nervous before things and it turns out okay, or, Oh yeah. I usually tend to be disappointed and I don't need to be because that my expectations are just high and hopefully you can take that forward and, try new things and go out there and [00:46:00] respond to the weather and dress for the weather the best you can. But then also, just learn from it and. we're excited for you excited to hear how that goes and what you're accomplishing in your lives. if you like what you're learning on the podcast. You can always, give us a five star review or referral. That's a great compliment. And you can also join us in our film and family program, which is the perfect way to take these tools and really start applying them. you'll get to work with us very closely, as we're releasing new courses and going in depth with coaching and working together. I think especially the people who join in the next couple of years, will be working very closely and intimately with us and our team. And that's kind of a cool opportunity to be able to help you. we want to help you get the results that we have now, and we want to grow together. and I think eventually you'll turn around and you'll be the ones [00:47:00] teaching people. Who want to have the results that you have, 

[00:47:04] Kent Thalman: [00:47:04] In some capacity Or another, you might not have a podcast or a life coaching practice.

[00:47:09]Anna Thalman: [00:47:09] you might, you might not, 

[00:47:10] Kent Thalman: [00:47:10] you don't have to just keep, keep working and keep growing. And when you start starting your own businesses or making your own movies or whatever results you're trying to create in your life, you know, or even family based goals, teaching is just a part of growing.

[00:47:26]Anna Thalman: [00:47:26] Yeah, 

[00:47:26] Kent Thalman: [00:47:26] you teach, you teach your peers, you teach those that are coming up behind you and then rising generations . And sometimes those rising generations are only five or 10 years behind you, but it's surprising how much you can offer those people that are only five or 10 years behind you. I'm learning that I have massive. Reservoirs of knowledge that I would have loved to have had five years ago. 

[00:47:48] Anna Thalman: [00:47:48] Yeah

[00:47:48] Kent Thalman: [00:47:48] So if that's the case than someone who's just five years behind me, whether they're older or younger than me, if they're on that particular journey, man, if I could have paid for that knowledge and [00:48:00] experience a little bit faster to get it five years ago, I'd have done it. which you can't always pay for the experience, but you, in some ways can put yourself in a position to learn the knowledge very, very quick. 

[00:48:11] Anna Thalman: [00:48:11] I do feel like some of my best mentors have been those, who've been just a few steps ahead of me. So it's still recent and fresh in their minds of all the things that they've learned. And yet. They are farther along and they know the road and can prepare me a little more to follow it. And I think that as these next generations of students are learning to create balance and the results they want, this community will continue to grow and eventually the industry will completely change. This is like the vision that I see is that it's going to flip on its head, the way that we are used to making movies, the experience we have as creators until eventually audiences are noticing the difference in quality. They notice a spike in quality in the media, and I think that their taste will improve. They'll start to not have a pallet [00:49:00] anymore for media. That, doesn't meet those standards. 

[00:49:03] Kent Thalman: [00:49:03] Yeah. And not just media in general, but I think especially the, the quality of. Low budget, independent feature films. That's my, at least that's probably where my heart is, is where people are going to start to really say, I think any music is breaking out in a way that is starting to create bigger waves. Some indie film is doing it too. but man, you go to film festivals and yeah. Even at film festivals, some festivals, the India work is still struggling severely. the local work, is 90% bad. And I'm not saying that from like a super judgemental place. I don't want to sound like that. I'm just saying, there's still more democratization to happen, but to have happened, not just in terms of technology, but in terms of knowledge, and in terms of, A wider range of perspectives. And I think it's great that there are so many people focusing on minority perspectives, but [00:50:00] we want to see one minority perspective, at least in this industry, which we believe is the family perspective is a major minority perspective. it's pseudo created by, studio executives, but we don't really feel like, people in the trenches of. Young familyhood are actually making very many films. They're surely not offering very many films 

[00:50:21] Anna Thalman: [00:50:21] Well and that's very personal to us. but yeah, I also think that the lifestyle is a huge part of it that will change the quality of the work that's getting put out there. and that will become eventually so attractive that it will attract the most talented people who otherwise these indie films would not be able to afford who would say, wow, I actually really. Would love to have a lifestyle where I can be making films and have the luxury of spending time with my family and sleeping and resting and at the same time, so much so that I I'll take a pay cut and enjoy that kind of richness, which is a different kind of rich

[00:50:58] Kent Thalman: [00:50:58] and making good [00:51:00] films. 

[00:51:00] Anna Thalman: [00:51:00] Yeah that too. 

[00:51:01] Kent Thalman: [00:51:01] That's the difference?

[00:51:02] That's the difference? So, Films that are reaching people emotionally. So thanks so much for joining us on this podcast. 

[00:51:07] Anna Thalman: [00:51:07] Sorry for our rants

[00:51:08] Kent Thalman: [00:51:08] We have endless, endless, uh, episode here, but, join us on the next episode and we'll catch you next time.

[00:51:14]Anna Thalman: [00:51:14] All right, bye.