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Trying to be perfect

October 17, 2013

I had an audition. It didn’t go well.

How many times have we said this? Bombing an audition never feels good. Ever. After this particular audition, I continued my bad mood all the way back to the bus. I was pretty much mumbling and cursing the entire walk to the bus. (And for a half mile, I can fit in a lot of cursing. Still waiting for the audition where I can apply this skill.)

Anyway, I go home and start to journal exactly what happened. Audition journals are great. You can look up what monologues you did, what outfit you wore, and who was in the room (if you get their names). And then of course you can evaluate yourself so that you can improve next time. As I was looking through recent auditions, I started to think about different ones I’ve had since I arrived in Chicago. I started to feel better. I may not have nailed that audition, but the fact that I got one for this particular job is pretty freaking awesome. And for that, I am grateful.

For all you New Yorkers, there’s a fantastic man living in your area named Adam Gilbert. He runs mybodytutor.com. I listened in on a free teleseminar he did through The Savvy Actor back in April that changed me for the better. Now I eat healthier, I’m in the best shape of my life, and feel great mentally. Definitely check him out. Then follow him on twitter @mybodytutor. I’m also a huge fan of his emails. Often he’ll ask you to reply and give your thoughts. I replied to one of them and told him about a setback I had recently with my workouts. He replied back “Keep in mind: perfection isn’t the goal. That’s like chasing the wind. Progress is the goal!”

While he was referring to nutrition, this absolutely applies to acting. I constantly catch myself trying to be this perfect actor. As far as I’m aware, booking one out of five auditions is a good thing. And it’s far from perfect.

As I looked through my journal, I went from being extremely frustrated to being happy with all the progress I’ve made. I realized I’ve made considerable progress between projects I’ve worked on and auditions I’ve gotten since the spring. I haven’t been able to quit my survival job, which is the ultimate goal. It’s probably going to take a lot of time. But the fact that I’ve made this much progress is pretty darn good, if you ask me.

So friends, I have a challenge for you. Remember that our goal is progress. Not perfection. This might mean we have to change the way we think about things in order to be happy about our goals. Just give it a shot. And then leave a comment with the progress you’ve made recently with your goals.

Remember, it doesn’t have to be perfect.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. The Growing Artist permalink
    October 28, 2013 11:17 am

    Awesome post! An Audition Journal is a great thing to have. I try to keep one when I can, though I must say I can be a bit lazy when it comes to keeping it updated :). It’s wonderful that you were able to see your growth as an actor! I can totally relate to the feeling of trying to be a perfect actor. I am constantly working towards appreciating the small successes and growing with every new experience. Keep it up!

    • October 28, 2013 5:21 pm

      Thanks so much! I hear you on updating the journal – I used to be terrible at keeping up with it until I stopped physically writing it out (I’m a huge fan of actually writing things instead of typing them). Now I save everything as a Word document. This also makes it easier to update for if/when you think of things you want to add later on. You can also make updates if you got the part! Who doesn’t like doing that? =) Really glad you could relate to this.

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