I am neck-deep in post-production for ye olde podcast. This entails making approximately 80,000 decisions, writing and recording the intros and outros for each episode, managing editors and deadlines, writing copy for the episode descriptions, planning social media promotion, listening to the finished products, and sending the episodes out into the world at regular intervals. 

To be frank, it is my least favorite part of the process. The recruiting, scheduling, logistical coordinating, and interviewing? Love it. Thank you, next project. And yet, at that point the work is only half done. 

With my background as a singer, I am used to preparation and execution. The laborious hours practicing, rehearsing, and learning culminated in the finished product of the live performance. There was no post-production. The performance was the finish line. 

With podcasting, I had a subconscious assumption that the “live” element of the process, the interview, should be the finish line. In reality, it is part of the preparation. The release is the finish line. After that point, it’s a matter of promotion. 

When we come into a new medium or project, we have our training and learned experience to guide us. Whether that information is truly relevant as a frame of reference or not, our brains seek to assimilate the unknown into what is already known. What I know is live performance. And so, in my mind, the live element of the process should be the end. Even though this process and product is entirely different, my brain wants it to be the same. And therein lies the friction. 

When we’re coming up against new and unknown, it is natural for our brains to shift that thing into terms we understand. We see this instinct in relationships as well. With roommates, for example, we walk into a new living arrangement with our own assumptions about how a living space should be organized and maintained. These are expectations that have been ingrained in us over the course of a lifetime, to the point that we have forgotten that there is another way of doing things. 

We carry over our rules and assumptions into a situation with an entirely different set of variables, and then wonder why there is friction. And yet, these assumptions are so deeply embedded, it is difficult to see them until we are thrown into a situation that challenges those assumptions. Then the question becomes how to deal with them.

As for me and this podcasting post-production nonsense, getting honest about my subconscious expectations has helped a whole lot. I’ve also had to come clean to myself about what is draining and give myself permission to find a way to get it off my plate. Once I’m honest, dealing with the friction then becomes a matter of learning where I need to adapt, where I need to compromise, and where I need to stand firm.

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