As an actor, you need a strong mindset
You will have to deal with rejection, dream stealers, criticism, insecurity and the massive highs and lows that are just part of ‘normal’ life for an actor. Not just deal with it but stay focused and positive through it all. You need the mindset of a warrior…
And you can have it.
But like anything worth having, you need to work at it. That is why this training is so important. Not only will this help you with your acting but it’ll help you in everyday life if you follow my advice and do the tasks regularly, you will see big changes in how you feel about yourself, your capabilities and the possibilities that are out there for you.
When you allow negative thoughts to take over, it takes away your focus and your belief that you have what it takes. Doubt creeps in and instead of putting yourself out there, networking, contacting the right people and making things happen, you watch Eastenders and eat lots of chocolate or drink a massive glass of wine to take your mind off it.
Not only is this not good for you, it doesn’t work either. Do you feel good about yourself afterwards? Do you think “Oh, I’m so glad I ate all that chocolate/drank all that wine/watched 5 episodes of Eastenders yesterday instead of working on my acting career. I feel so much better about myself now.”
Learning to be in control of your own mind gives you freedom. We can’t choose what happens, but we can choose how we react to it. I can almost guarantee that everybody can think of an example of someone who has been through hell but is still able to smile and move forward with their life, and somebody else who has crumbled at something that doesn’t seem that important to most people. The difference here is mindset.
Some people feel sorry for themselves because they are stuck in a dead end job, have no direction, people keep treating walking all over them, or they don’t have the time, money, skills or confidence that they need. Do you want to know the truth? Brace yourself for what I’m about to say. If you are one of these people, you put yourself there. It’s all down to your limiting beliefs and the way you feel about yourself. You have allowed these things to happen and you’ve allowed yourself to be treated in that way. If you can accept this, then you are ready to move on. The good news is that you have the power to get out if it too. You are in control of your own mind and of your own life.
You can say, “But some people have better chances; they’re born into money, they grew up in a better area, their parents did this to help them, or they were JUST LUCKY.”
Here’s the thing; people who are given everything without having to fight for it generally don’t stay successful for long. Why? Because they haven’t had to develop the drive and determination that they need. Sure, there are some that seem to have been ‘lucky’ but you haven’t seen their struggles. If they stay at the top, it’s because they are working damn hard to make that happen.
There are always obstacles and there always will be but how we react to them is our choice. Take responsibility for your actions and your inactions. Do not let the past rule you. Do not let other people define who you are. Do not let fear stand in your way.
So, why do people react differently?
Our minds are conditioned, and we make up our minds about the world and its possibilities from a very young age. Every single thing you have ever experienced, seen, thought and felt are all stored in our subconscious mind and we react to things depending on the experiences we’ve had.
When the mind is filled with negativity, it blocks you. It’s like an over protective parent, it wants to protect you. It tells you that it’s not possible for you because it doesn’t want you to get hurt. It puts blocks in the way to keep you in a comfortable, safe place. We need to reprogram your mind by strengthening the positives and dimming down the negatives.
Did you know that if you tell yourself you can’t learn lines/ aren’t good at auditions/ freeze when it comes to improvisation that you will sabotage your own attempts? Of course you won’t know you are doing it, it’s your subconscious mind that’s responsible.
Have you ever noticed that when you are running late, everything goes wrong? You lose your keys, you fall over, you forgot something and have to rush back home? You’re telling yourself you are late and are behaving in a way that’s guaranteed to make you late. You are proving yourself right.
What if you could really see yourself as a professional actor? Would it change how you respond to things? Would you be more relaxed at auditions and be able to let your creativity flow? Would you value yourself and your time more and stop doing so much work for free? Would you contact that person that at the moment you don’t have the courage to? Would you apply for more roles? Would you put yourself out there more?
Would you take more risks? Could you shake off criticism knowing that just because one person doesn’t get you, doesn’t mean they are right? Would you stop that need you have to seek validation from other people?
If you did all of these things, is there more chance of you actually becoming a professional actor and getting as far as you want to?
It’s a no-brainer.
You are going to have to face up to your blocks and self-sabotage to be able to eradicate them. Your confidence and self-belief will grow at a rapid rate allowing you to step into the version of you that is hidden inside waiting to explode out into the world.
The only limits are the ones you set yourself.
It’s time for you to break free.
You weren’t born to be ordinary… You were born to shine!
Eirian Cohen is the founder of Northern Star Acting and co-producer of ESG Media, LTD. (If you want to really develop your craft, we are holding auditions now for our acting for film and television courses in Leeds and Sherburn in Elmet)