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Goal Setting, Part 3: What Do We Do When We Get Stuck?

It doesn’t matter if you’ve been in your career for a year or for twenty years… we all get stuck from time to time. Maybe it’s a rejection that cuts a little too deep, the fear of not knowing how to do something, the fear of failure, the fear of success, a conversation in our head that tells us we can’t, or that the time’s not right, or that we’re too old, or the economy is bad. Whatever it is for you, it feels real and true and most importantly, it stops you!

The best goals, intentions, timelines, strategic plans… they all go out the window when we’re stuck. What do we do? How do we handle it? How do we get back on track? And how do we get back on track quickly?

I had a friend who, during an audition, had a bad experience where the director was very rude to her. It was three months before she went on another audition. My film partner and I had a similar situation happen to us. We had successfully produced films in other countries and were planning to produce our first film here in the U.S. We did a fantastic business plan and movie poster, had a great investor’s package, had everything organized and were ready to go out to investors. That was December of 2004. All of a sudden it was March 1st 2005! I had gone unconscious about the project and didn’t even know that I was stuck. The fear of raising the money stopped me cold!

I think getting stuck from time to time is inevitable. The question is, how do we deal with it and how do we get back on track in record time. Here are a few ideas from some of my entertainment industry guests who joined me for my MTT video. They’ve experienced being stuck first hand and they have some valuable advice for us.

CREATE A VISUAL DISPLAY: CEO of Now Casting, Bob Steward, feels that having your goals clearly plotted and broken down into a timeline with milestones is key. “But most importantly,” he says, “have it clearly visible at all times. That way you’ll stay conscious and engaged in your career and you’ll notice if something is wrong. So you’ll find out ‘oh, my foot’s stuck’ as opposed to ‘holy cow, I’m knee deep in quicksand.’

KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE PRIZE: Actress Mary Stein says that for her the best and fastest way to get unstuck is a daily practice of staying in touch with her vision. “Stay focused on the big picture,” she says, “and keep your eye on the prize.”

FACT VERSUS FICTION: Director/Writer Mark Rosman suggests that we look at the facts. “When I notice that I’m stuck,” he says, “I look at what is the story that I’m telling myself and I write it down. For example, after a producer called and said he didn’t want to option my script, I thought, oh, I’m not talented enough… I can’t write dialogue, and a whole ton of crazy things went through my mind. I wrote the long list on a piece of paper and then I compared it to the facts. The fact was, that producer didn’t want my script… period! That was the fact. So instead of looking at my interpretations of what I made it all mean, I decided to just look at the facts. All the drama disappeared in an instant and I got back on the phone and started pitching again.

HAVE AN ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER: Comedy Central Executive Kris Emery suggests that we have a buddy that we stay in touch with on a regular basis. Kris and her accountability partner speak (or blog) daily or weekly supporting each other with their goals and all the ups and downs that go along with reaching them. And they’ve been doing this for over 20 years!

IT’S A GOOD THING! IT MEANS YOU’RE GETTING BIGGER:
So says TV and feature writer Alison Lea Bingeman. She believes that “if you’re stuck, that means that you are breaking through to some new ground… some new level. She says that “there’s something new that you’re learning and that you’re processing and that you’ll come out on the other side with a lot more knowledge and a lot more wisdom.”

As I’ve mentioned, we are all going to get stuck from time to time, whether from internal reasons or external sources. We’re human. It happens. The question is… for how long are you willing to stay stuck? Minutes, days, weeks, years? How about seconds? Wouldn’t that be a whole lot better? Let’s cut down, way down, on the time we spend being stopped and stuck. Start using these suggestions and get masterful at getting back on track immediately.

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The Dropped “R”

by Donald the Dialect Coach When working on your dialect training, it’s important to remember that the “R” sound is a HUGE part of every dialect. Depending on the dialect, the “R” sound is either dropped, used heavily, or rolled. A few dialects that drop the R sound are: British, Cockney, New York, Australian, Southern, South African Read the Rest…

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Goal Setting, Part II

ACCOUNTABILITY It’s Time to Put Your Butt on the Line by Suzanne Lyons In my last article on ‘Goal Setting’ I stressed the importance of setting goals, creating a strategic plan for your career, and following a timeline with clear specific actions to ensure that your goals happen. It’s all great… in fact, it’s all Read the Rest…

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Student Films Make an Excellent Credit and a Great Real

By Diane Christiansen Acting is a competitive sport.  The supply of actors is much greater than the demand of roles.  Nowhere is this more true than in major motion pictures.  The production powers that be do everything they can to protect the huge monetary investments they make in a film, which often means casting “name Read the Rest…

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Blue8 Productions

Blue8 is an action-adventure training facility and production company comprised of top stunt performers and athletes in multiple fields including: Parkour, Martial Arts, Yoga, Dance and Military Special-Operations. We encompass these dynamic arts into one practice that prepares our students for anything the entertainment industry can throw at them. Our faculty and company member credits Read the Rest…

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Kimberly_Jentzen-The_power_of_Listening

Acting – The Power and Magic of Listening

Kimberly Jentzen presents a new and dynamic series: The Power and Magic of Listening, Part One. The following is an excerpt from her newly released book, Acting with Impact: Power Tools to Ignite the Actor’s Performance. POWER TOOL: LISTENING LISTENING IS WHERE THE MAGIC LIVES Listening is opening up and hearing with not only your Read the Rest…

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SPECIAL SKILLS – A Commercial Audition-Getter

When new actors first start auditioning for Commercials and they don’t have many credits, their special skills can be a major asset in getting auditions.  Many commercial and often theatrical roles are looking to cast actors with specific skills. Skills and hobbies can be almost anything in which you excel, do well or have some Read the Rest…

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walking into the Audition Room

Walking Into The Audition Room

The audition begins for the viewers when the actor walks into the audition room. That first impression of the actor can determine whether the viewers want to take 3 minutes to read the actor – or not. They want to see a confident actor who is focused, prepared, and ready for the audition. They want Read the Rest…

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Reading For Studio Executives: Auditioning For a Series Regular Role on Television

When the Producers decide that they want to take you over to read for the Studio Executives, you first have to make a “test” deal before you are allowed to read for them. This happens because the Studio wants to know how much you will cost before they “buy” you. The Casting Director calls your Read the Rest…

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Joe Tremaine

Audition and Move On!

Auditions are the mainstay of the way performers get jobs. I know many people dislike auditions, but they are “the way business is done.” You have to show what you can do – “Show me what ya got kid!” Preparation: A performer should be ready to audition at a moments notice! You should be in Read the Rest…

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