The difference between being negative and being genuine. (It’s not what you think.) 

…okay maybe it’s what you think. 

Just recently, I came home to my apartment after returning to a visit to the Boston area. 

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Not wanting to break routine, I proceeded to through my usual vacation withdrawals at first. “What? Back to reality? Back to day jobs? Ugh…” I decided I needed something Boston related to get me through the next few days. And since nothing makes me happier than the Red Sox, I figured listening to some baseball would do the trick. 

Good news: I have a membership that allows me to listen to any baseball game I want! 

Bad news: …it wasn’t working. 

Three phone calls and multiple conversations with both Google Play and MLB At Bat reps resulted in….no answers. 

The follow day, I called again. This time I got a rep named Cara from Oklahoma. 

Truthfully, Cara didn’t sound particularly enthusiastic to talk to me. And I couldn’t say I blamed her – I was calling to get help with something that really didn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. I love baseball – but I don’t need baseball. (Playoffs excluded. Obviously.) Yet I was surprised when apologized to me for not sounding more energetic. “I’m really not feeling well,” she admitted.

Her honesty allowed us to have an awesome conversation. She wasn’t being fake, pretending like she was thrilled to be at work (even though I’m sure her boss wouldn’t approve.) She was honest and I even got to learn more about her. She loves baseball, hockey, and was looking to get back into a career in singing! I loved everything about this. 

She also scored extra points when she solved my problem and got Tony Rossi some baseball back into his life. 

Now had Cara gone on to vent to me about how much she hated her job, hated being sick, etc. this would have been a different blog post. But I personally love when I get a sense of honesty from someone who is on the clock and serving me. 

In a nutshell, I can’t stand fake. I blame the corporate environment for this, and not their employees – who are most likely not getting paid enough to even be there in the first place. 

The way to be genuine is to be yourself without venting. I love getting a sense of the person behind the mandatory smile. But let’s also not confuse this with getting a free pass to bitch and moan that we’re on the clock in the first place. 

So friends, be on the lookout for more ways to be yourself without going into a tailspin of “this sucks and here’s why.” 

And if all else fails – tweet broadcaster Tim Neverett and let him know where you’re listening from. He likes when you do this. 

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Don’t worry, I wasn’t being negative. They were broadcasting an extra inning game. And doing it wonderfully. 

 

Let’s go get ‘em, friends. 


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Tony is a theatre and film actor living in Chicago, just up the street from Wrigley Field 🙂 He loves helping others to become the happiest version of themselves so that they can live more fun, fulfilled lives on their own terms.

He also loves to blog on how to do this. 

Contact him for a free one-on-one to see if he can help you with your own mindset and happiness in life, or to inquire if he can do some writing for you!  You can reach him at tony.rossi@gmail.com

PS – Rumor has it that he loves when you hit that “share” button for friends and family to see 😉 

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Wanna see more? Check out my actor website! 

I also have a YouTube Channel with weekly #SundayVideos where I share how to take control over our thoughts and feelings on facebook live! 

 

Baseball is Not “Just Baseball”

I used to think I was going to be a Harry Potter when I grew up.

I was eleven. I was a skinny guy with glasses. It wasn’t too long before I heard an announcement that the Harry Potter series would be turned into a movies. Like, real life movies. I should also note I lacked confidence, was terrified of girls (especially if I had a crush on them), and was eager to fit in with the popular kids. (I know, I know – the story of every eleven year old.)  

I made the decision: I was going to be cast as Harry Potter.

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….yeah. I had zero acting experience. I am not British. It didn’t happen. But I totally got paid to wear a green suit for a music video shoot one time…

This, my friends, is a very true story of what would eventually lead me to join drama club, continue acting through high school, pursue a BA in theatre, and move to Chicago to be a real life actor. That said, I don’t need to be Harry Potter. And today I much prefer plays over movies.

Reader note: If your name is Steven Spielberg, please stop reading and email tony.rossi@gmail.com. I’d be open to discussing “awkward guy who laughs too loud” in your upcoming film, despite my theatrical preferences….

Things change as we get older. Passions, goals, hobbies tend to shift. But those one or two passions that stick with us? Those are special. 

Before I wanted to be Harry Potter, I wanted to be a baseball player. I don’t anymore. (Sorry, Theo.) But I guess you can say I still like baseball.

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Another cool thing about Chicago – people here kind of like baseball. (Try watching this without crying. I dare you.)

What makes this special isn’t just the fact that a baseball team won. Yes, the championship was special. But the really special part of this video is watching the deep level of human connection.

That, my friends, is pretty effing beautiful.

This is much, much more than just a game.

I’ve always lived in either Chicago or New England. Know what that means for April? IT’S WEIRD. The weather can’t make up its mind 🙂 But there’s one thing that always makes me happy – baseball is back. There’s magic in the air again.

Finding those things we’re passionate about makes life a whole lot more fun. Don’t downplay those passions, friends. You’re robbing others of your joy. 

Also, this.

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The marquee outside Murphy’s Bleachers always makes me smile. 

Let’s go get ’em, friends.

***    ****

Tony is a theatre and film actor living in Chicago, just up the street from Wrigley Field 🙂 He loves helping others to become the happiest version of themselves so that they can live more fun, fulfilled lives on their own terms.

He also loves to blog on how to do this. 

Contact him for a free one-on-one to see if he can help you with your own mindset and happiness in life, or to inquire if he can do some writing for you!  You can reach him at tony.rossi@gmail.com

PS – Rumor has it that he loves when you hit that “share” button for friends and family to see 😉 

Be you. Not your friend.

Actor friends. Stop me if you heard this one. 

You did a show. It went great. You loved your cast. The show closes. Next thing you know, someone from your cast goes on to book a bunch of awesome things….

-A role with your all time favorite theatre company

-A speaking role on a Chicago television show

-Another speaking on a non Chicago television show. 

Meanwhile, you were…

-Working in more shows, but not ones that were getting the attention or publicity as your friend’s

-Continue to work day jobs that you don’t like. 

-Later find yourself in between projects and embarrassed to answer the question, “So…what are you working on right now?” 

I’m a big fan of Marie Forleo. She spoke about comparison in a recent episode of “Marie TV” (which you can watch in full here). I’ve included some of my favorite quotes: 

“There are not limited spots on the podium.” 

“[The comparison impulse] is addictive, deadly, and will destroy your happiness if you let it.”

“People say, ‘comparison is the thief of joy.’ I’ve called it ’The hamburgler of happiness!’”  

When one person is succeeding next to us in our field, It’s very easy to get upset. But here’s the really crazy part of all this – most of the time we don’t bother to examine why that person is ahead of us. Personally I think our energies are better directed at our own goals and tasks, but let’s pretend “you can’t help it” for a minute….(For the record, I think that you “can’t help it” it’s bullshit, but I’m in a good mood and still have some coffee left, so I’ll play….)

I recently saw two different successful actor friends pop up on the internet for multiple theatre companies I want to work with. Wanna know what I discovered? They’ve been doing theatre in Chicago for a while. Like, a long while. We’re talking my list of top five favorite Chicago theatre companies when before they had hit double digits in age. Wanna know what I was doing before I was ten years old? Drawing pictures of baseball players. And watching baseball. Really anything that could make me believe that I was going to be a baseball player. 

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Sorry guys. 29 Year Old Tony is not going to be a baseball player. But he pulls off this Red Sox winter hat pretty well, in my opinion…

My friends. It is a waste of time to look outside your own lane. It’s yours. Besides, once I start booking roles with said theatre companies….is it really going to matter that I arrived at the same finish line as them just a couple of decades later? 

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In the meantime? I’m okay with being in the email newsletter for Broken Nose Theatre. They’ve been pretty cool to work with 🙂 

I think not. Who knows – maybe we’ll all do a show together. That’d be awesome. 

Let’s go get ‘em. 

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Tony is a theatre and film actor living in Chicago, just up the street from Wrigley Field 🙂 He loves helping others to become the happiest version of themselves so that they can live more fun, fulfilled lives on their terms. Contact him for a free one-on-one to see if he can help you with your own mindset and happiness in life at tony.rossi@gmail.com

PS – Rumor has it that he loves when you share his content with friends and family.

What I learned about happiness from the Chicago White Sox

If you’ve been following me the past couple months, you know that my beloved “cheat nights” have been non existent. On Monday night I ended a near two month streak of eating clean at the White Sox game…

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….there weren’t too many others with the same agenda as me.

Perhaps it was the low attendance. Maybe it was that I went to the game alone. Or maybe it was the fact that I didn’t drink as much as I normally do at baseball games (great money saver!) But I seemed to be keenly aware of things that I don’t typically notice at baseball games. All of them center around the thing I’m always searching for most: Happiness.

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Isn’t it interesting how much time and money we set aside for fun activities?

We easily drop a couple hundred dollars for a night of fun. Yet from what I noticed, it seemed a lot of people were paying lots of money just to be unhappy that night.

I noticed it from the gentleman sitting in front of me. These men had dugout seats and the rest of the row to themselves. Yet their conversation centered around their dislike of the pitcher,  previous years of White Sox mediocrity and heckling the struggling hitters.

I noticed it too on specific plays. At one point, the pitcher made a great grab on a ground ball, only to follow by making a fielding error. The fans groaned and quickly started to boo. The boos were followed by jeers and nasty comments that could easily be heard by the pitcher on the mound. Interesting, I thought – the fans who played lots of money to be there, were assumedly there to be happy, were furiously at this one play. (Which, by the way, didn’t end up affecting the score.)

And because I’m also #notperfect, I noticed it with myself. It was my first night deviating from my meal plan and I was trying very hard to enjoy it. So much so that I skipped my usual game time meal of hot dogs for some “Irish Nachos”….

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Only $9! Score! Wait….

….and was very disappointed when I didn’t get any nachos. I suppose to the average fan, these could have been more enjoyable. But for me, they weren’t what I wanted. All I could think was that I just spent $9 on food I didn’t even want. Fortunately I got hungry again later in the game…

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$13. Sometimes spending more is worth it. 

Regardless of whether you like baseball, hot dogs, or anything I just talked about, consider this: Our time is valuable. We spend lots of time working to earn money. Our fun nights should be fun. They should be enjoyable on our own terms. Not on the outcome of the game or the food we eat. Sometimes making happiness a priority means putting our egos aside to appreciate what we did to get ourselves there. Maybe enjoy the company around you. Or if you’re not having fun – take some time away from the event itself and walk around. Bring those friends with you! Or take some time for yourself.

I admittedly found myself cold and bored at one point that night. Even though I typically hate missing the game itself, I gave myself permission to go for a walk, appreciate that I was at a baseball game, and even try sitting in different sections of the ballpark since it was so empty.

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Now if this is a playoff game…..okay fine, that might be a different story. Maybe I’ll even write a different blog about it….

…in the mean time, let’s be happy.

Go get ‘em, friends.

Being happy takes WORK

Look at my facebook page.

It’s easy to think I’m happy 100% of the time, always eating healthy, watching the Cubs, and heading off to an audition.

Social media tends to share our “highlight reel.” We see the awesome moments of others and think that’s it – that must be their life. For the most part, we don’t update our statuses we’re throwing a temper tantrum. (And for those few who do, they usually don’t last on our newsfeeds for much longer.)

Here’s a fact: I love my life. But it stresses me the hell out. While the payoff is great, the hard work can be a struggle.

Nutrition

I don’t love saying no to free chocolate that always seems to be available at work. I don’t love walking away from the free samples at the grocery store. I don’t love eating clean 100% of the time. But I sure love my cheat days.

More importantly, I love the way I look and feel. When I go to bed at night and wake up in the morning, I’m thrilled with my health. And that makes all those “no thank you’s” throughout the day worth it.

Personal Growth

Anyone here like binge watching shows on Netflix?

I used to watch tons of Netflix. I also used to watch more baseball games and listen to stand up comedy. Do I still do those things? Sure. But I cut it down considerably. On average, I watch roughly twenty minutes of television a day. I rarely watch sports and opt to listen to games while I work. And while I miss Jim Gaffigan, he sadly doesn’t make the cut these days.

What am I doing the rest of the time? I’m investing in myself. I listen to audio books, Ted Talks, coach training calls, and acting tips from Dallas Travers. Do I like skipping the fun things? Nope. Don’t get me started on how many Cubs games I missed this post season.

The payoff has always been worth it. But the initial sacrifice? Yeah that’s unpleasant.

Social Life

I really, really miss weekends.

Not only do I work Fridays through Sundays, but I also wake up early on those days so I can still complete my coaching and acting work for the day. Ask any of my friends who work normal 9-5 jobs the last time they saw me. I’ve gotten addicted to getting stuff done. God help me.

Here’s the deal: I don’t always share these things on my social media posts. It’s tough. I don’t ask for sympathy – that would be silly. But I share it here because I want my friends to know that even though it might look like I’m living this crazy and ridiculously positive and fun life, there’s a lot more sacrifice and unpleasantness than there might appear.

I want to leave you with a question: If you knew that making sacrifices in the short term would pay off in the long run, would you do it too? What if it helped get you out of your JOB and towards your crazy, awesome life?

Think about it.

Go get ‘em guys.

What Happens When You Focus On Highlight Reels

So I have no television.

Having no television means you don’t watch a lot of the things you used to. When I get the chance, I’m a sucker for watching baseball highlights.  They show the pros at their best. The announcers are excited. There’s music playing in background.

I love ‘em. But they give us a false impression. This is especially the case if they’re focused on a particular individual.

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As if the pic isn’t great enough…it’s from a site called “Chowder and Champions.” 

On September 12th of last month, Papi launched the 500th homer of his career into the bleachers of Tropicana Field. He was the 27th player in baseball ever to do so. When he returned to Fenway Park in Boston, a pregame ceremony was held in his honor. It even included a montage of all 500 of his home runs. As a diehard fan that adores David Ortiz (with a life goal of receiving a bear hug from the guy), I can guess watching it live was pretty neat.

Here’s the thing: That reel was a highlight reel. What it didn’t show was his slump of ’09, where it took nearly two months to hit home run number one of the season. It didn’t show when he was tested positive for banned substances shortly after. And as far as I know, it didn’t show the time he got ejected and beat the crap out of the dugout phone in Tampa (ironically, the same place he hit number 500).

This isn’t to take away any of David’s incredible accomplishments. Rather, it’s to emphasize that even the best have their bad days. These typically don’t get shown.

As an actor and entrepreneur, I know all too well the frustration of seeing others succeed at the goals that I so desperately want. I see their facebook page. I see photos from their second national commercial. And oh, they work with that agent I’ve been trying to get a hold of? Of course they do.

It’s easy to get frustrated.

Know this: Frustration and jealousy is a choice. It’s not necessarily a switch we can flip that suddenly makes us happy. It’s something we can gradually incorporate into our routine over time. (Message me. I know some tips 😉 )

Even the best have their bad days. Comparing ourselves to their highlight reel is a waste of time and energy. It leads to disappointment and focusing on what we don’t have. Look at what you’ve already accomplished on your own, unique, and individual path to success.

So…what are you going to do to make today amazing?

#gogetem