2017-06-03 11:26

Nicci Lee Watson

“I undertake to speak to as many young minds as possible before the end of 2017 and would love to share my journey.” That is what was emphasized time and time again when I sat down with Nicci Lee Watson and asked her about her plans for the future and her goals. Nicci plans on speaking to over 20 schools before the end of 2017, her main aim is youth development and inspiring the youth through motivational talks and creative classes.

Nicci, an actress, leader and motivational speaker got her first acting part on “Generations The Legacy” in 2014 as a Therapist and her second role on Soap on a Rope which is currently airing on SABC3. From her diverse experience and all her life lessons it is her passion to grow and inspire young creative minds.

“Cultivate your craft” is an initiative to grow and inspire young people to be wise about their choices from as early as grade 8 and also to understand how various choices in school influence their later years in the working world.

Her aim is also to inspire the youth to not make their creativity a secondary talent, if you are creative, pursue it and take it seriously. Her initiative is also aimed at harvesting young creative talents and creating a bridge to corporate working worlds - creative ones like advertising and marketing agencies, acting and drama schools etc.

We did a short Q&A with Nicci to find out more:

  1. What made you want to do this school tour?

I went to a wonderful high school which encouraged creativity and individualism, I mean we had textile design and ceramic design as full on subjects. Students could take musical or dramatic curriculums on full time, I had to find a way to give back and to open student’s eyes about the opportunities available to them. To perfect their talents and to cultivate an attitude of excellence from young ages as this would dramatically help them in the big world.

  1. Tell us more about Cultivate your craft, how important is picking the right career choice for you?

Cultivate your craft is identifying your unique talent and skill and mastering it. With particular attention to creativity as creativity is often sidelined and deemed a hobby. However once a creative person tries to conform to a certain "corporate" linear path we drown and end up leaving to pursue creativity later on in life which puts us at a slight disadvantage coz who wants to start studying at 25? From scratch then try break through... hence career choice is key to success and happiness however this becomes tricky for most parent as they don't want their kids gambling with their future. The mindset needs to change around the perception of the creative industry by both parents and learners. Creativity is not the easy way out nor is it easy, so the same seriousness around a law degree needs to be observed for a bachelor of art or a marketing and advertising degree.

  1. You believe in a different mindset which emphasizes creativity over routine why is creativity so important?

There are some of us who simply cannot be put in a cubicle or a box. We need different stimulation for our minds to thrive. It's not necessarily about running away from a 9-5, coz working for an ad agency is 9-5, it's how those 8 hours are spent. Creatives are creatives. We need to create. So it's important to understand how a creative mind works and to draw the greatest value from how time is spent. Creativity is magical. We are the linguists of emotion and illustrators of the heart. We say or depict things words couldn't. We churn your innermost feelings by doing very little and saying everything in an instance. We essentially are the heartbeat of the world and that's why we matter.

  1. What is your ultimate goal?

To cause the next generation to be the most successful and gratified generation ever. To cause students to cultivate fearless attitudes and grow as collectives and not the selfish singular me generation. I want the next generation to be responsible for themselves and others and to create symbiosis. We are coz they are. They are because we are.

  1. There are many young women who watch you every day and are inspired by you, what advice do you have for them?

Ask lots of questions. Ask the right questions. Don't be lazy!!! Use your brain, challenge your brain. Read unrelated stuff about everything and anything. Make your mind a jewelry box of info. If you see people on TV ask about what it took to get there, coz it's really not about fame, and it's not as easy as you think. I still get rejected at auditions, and have no feedback about why. Sometimes I really suck at auditions and you have to take notes on why you sucked and correct them. Sometimes you didn't really do your best and you have to understand what your best looks like and aim for that always. Be inspired by the tight things, not pretty selfies and purses on an Instagram page.

  1. How important is women empowerment in today’s society?

How important is your mom to you? That how important it is. There are so many strengths woman have     and besides our default challenges we generally have to do more to break through. It's weird. I say we just continue doing what we’re doing. We rise anyway. The debate just wastes time. We are capable. We are worthy. We are great. We don't need to debate why; we simply show you.

  1. Stats show that 70% of the youth pick careers that was actually chosen by someone else, why is this problematic?

Because you are pleasing your parents and not yourself. Kids are suicidal because they are unfulfilled and unhappy. They feel trapped, lost and under whelmed. You can't judge a fish by its ability to fly.

  1. What has been your greatest achievement to date?

Following my dreams and achieving them. I left a stable income and the security of corporate and got my role on Soap on a Rope. Now I'm perusing my ultimate goal of speaking to the Youth. I'm a public speaker and it comes naturally to me. I enjoy connecting with people through writing and speaking, but speaking mostly and I'm doing it. That's my greatest achievement thus far.

  1. What is the one quote that you live by?

I don't particularly live by quotes. But I love your honesty. Know your truth. Tell the truth. Be honest. Fight for the truth. As ugly as it may be it is yours. Own it then grow. And Love. Love is the chapter I'm working with currently. It's a big chapter and I learn from it more and more each day. Unconditional love is our inherent trait. The more we show and give the more ourselves be become and feel. The world needs it.


AB praises selfless skipper

2010-11-21 18:15

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