by OAS Team
Just in case you have somehow managed to avoid hearing the familiar, dulcet tones of sleigh bells, michael bublé or mariah carey on the radio recently, or have not noticed the intrusive list of cheesy and guilty pleasure) holiday movies appearing on netflix, yes, it is in fact christmas time once again.
As actors, the constant hustle and drive to get ahead in this industry is an attitude that has been taught and encouraged by almost every acting coach everywhere and is an attitude that has no doubt proven to be effective. However, when we are passionately and persistently seeking higher and better results, we often forget how important it is to pause, take a break and resharpen our tools.
For those who follow professional sports, or even for those who don’t, you have probably heard most coaches or athletes say the same thing; the road to success is about balancing your vigorous training with proper health, self-care, and rest. Well, the same goes for actors.
The holiday season is undoubtably the best time to do this. It is the best time to disconnect and allow yourself the break you so desperately need because like you, casting directors and production companies need a break too. So what better time is there for you to take a breath, rest, relax, and regroup without the fear of missing an audition or opportunity.
Taking some much needed “you” time gives you the opportunity to self-reflect on just how far you have come as well as appreciate every large or small thing you have accomplished in the last year. Did you book a job or get a new agent? Did you get new headshots or film a scene for your reel? Did you finally nail that scene in class that you have been struggling with, or even write a scene or script yourself? Even if your accomplishments for the year are not acting related, it is important to celebrate all the small steps you have taken towards your larger goal.
Spending quality time with your friends and family, watching “Love Actually” for the 100th time or even reading that book that you listed in last year’s resolution that you just haven’t gotten around to yet can give you some much needed down time to relax and rejuvenate.
This holiday break is also a good time to ask yourself what your goals are for the new year.
What do you want or need to be able move into the new year as your most revitalized and capable self? Would it benefit you to work on your vocal or accent skills, or to take a self-tape audition class? Do you want to learn Shakespeare or Stage Combat? Have you taken the time to update your website or online profiles to reflect your most recent work or training to better prepare yourself for when the offices reopen? Or do you need remind yourself to take more time for sleep and self-care in the new year?
Being an actor is not like a regular nine-to-five job where you can leave your work at the office, and it can be difficult to press pause on the “go, go, go” mentality or to turn your ambitious acting brain off even for a moment. Nevertheless, it is essential to allow yourself time to check in and connect with your heart, body and mind. Take some time to rest and refuel so that you don’t enter the new year and next phase of your journey already approaching burn out. The opportunities, auditions and projects that are waiting for you in the new year deserve the best of you and everything you have to give, and so do you.
So, give yourself the gift of self-care this Christmas.
Rest, relax and refuel.