Whether you realize it or not, your life is full of mentors. Day in and day out, you are being influenced by many people. Below are 5 networking fears that affect an actor’s progress. Don’t subconsciously allow these fears to create inadequate or negative mentors in your life.
1. The fear of saying “no”.
Don’t be afraid to turn down projects that have an environment or outcome that don’t push your career forward.
2. The fear of lost connections.
Don’t be afraid to cut loose a negative influence. This could be anything from a bad coach to a bad personal relationship.
3. The fear of being perceived as a “know-it-all” by people that aren’t qualified to give you advice on your career
Let’s face it, not everyone you know is an expert on the business. You’re going to get crappy advice from people that don’t know a thing and if you don’t take it, they’ll treat you like you’re being a jerk. So? I don’t take stock advice from my chiropractor and I don’t take medical advice from my barista. Sometimes you just have to tell someone “I don’t want to hear it”. Do this tactfully, of course.
4. Fear of changing acting schools
I always tell my students that they can learn a lot from going to different instructors. Any coach that truly wants you to succeed will encourage you to diversify your sources of education. This is your career, not theirs. We may hate to see you go, but we want to see you on the screen. A strong coach will always continue to bring in new clients, so the money shouldn’t be the issue. Not only do you get a fresh perspective from a new school, you network with a new group of peers. Seek out groups that want the best for you.
Now here’s the scariest one.
5. Fear of leaving a bad “real job” environment
What’s your ultimate goal? Is it to keep the job you have now or to make a living in film and TV? We all have to make a living, I get that. If your job is keeping you from getting closer to your real goal, its time to come up with an exit strategy. I’ve been in the position of having a job that paid well, that cut into my career. What did I do? I quit. I now act more, make more money, help more people and drive a nicer car. Most importantly, I’m happier. I didn’t do this without a strategy, though. I’ll go into detail about “real job” exit strategies and income creation in a later post. Don’t get chained to a “stress anchor”, just because it provides a paycheck.
Remember to keep operating from inspiration, not desperation. If your peer group, doesn’t inspire you, its time to restructure. You are a business & struggling businesses restructure to improve results.
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