1 Reason You Don’t Need a Standout Resume

The following shares how I felt after booking a job with one of my favorite Chicago theatres. It was originally written for Backstage.com. Read on, my friends 🙂  

Have you ever had an audition where you thought, “There’s no way I’m going to book this.”

I recently had an audition for one of my favorite theaters in Chicago. I didn’t care that it was an understudy gig—it was my type and a chance to work with people I love. I wanted it.

After reading the script, a few thoughts came to mind, compliments of my inner critic. I call him Fred. Fred proceeded to tell me the following…

“There’s no way you’ll book this.”

“You’re so not right for the part.”

“That character they want you/me to read for is how old? Oh god. Ha! Good luck with that.”

I told friends I wouldn’t book it. I told my parents I wouldn’t book it. I figured this would just be a chance to meet some decision makers who would consider me down the road.

And then I booked the gig.

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I was a little excited to work on this new Calamity West play! 

 

I’m fairly certain after reading the offer email that I scared away half the customers at the coffee shop I was working in. I was thrilled! I hadn’t even had my second cup of coffee yet but immediately knew it was going to be a good day.

Of course, it wasn’t long before Fred chimed in again…

“They probably just had a low turnout.”

“This is just their B cast. They don’t actually expect you to go on.”

“It’s not a big deal. I’m sure the other friends you saw at the audition booked it, too. You’re nothing special.

As a result of working with coaches who I believe to be experts at personal development, I stopped listening to Fred. Mentors including Courtney Rioux, Dallas Travers, and DaJuan Johnson have all helped me remember that I do deserve it and I am perfect for the part. Even if it was a low turnout and the rest of my friends booked it as well, I’m still awesome. I’m still enough.

Careful of your own Fred. He means well, but he’s not as smart as you. You are awesome. You are enough. And you don’t need a standout resume for that to be true.

Let’s go get ‘em, friends.

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Thanks for reading!

By the way, I’m Tony. I live in Chicago. (Duh.) I’m an actor and blogger living right up the street from Wrigley Field. 

My blog is here to help others take control and live a more authentically positive life on their terms. Since working with a coach and learning more about personal development, I’ve started sharing my learnings with others. (I have a lot…)

If we’ve never meet – shoot me a tweet!  Would love to hear how you found this 🙂 

Wanna see more? Check out my actor website or YouTube channel!

Wanna make sure you never miss a post? Click the “Follow” button in the right corner to enter your email and subscribe! 

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You Can’t Afford NOT to Invest in Personal Development

Post originally published on Backstage.com 

It was one of those auditions where I didn’t feel like I deserved to be there.

When I arrived, casting was on break and I felt intrusive. Suddenly, I was self-conscious of everything I did. Am I sitting too casually? Should I put my phone down so I’m ready when they are? My head was spinning, despite not having one negative word said to me—the negative chatter was all my doing.

It was an uncomfortable reminder of how easy it is to feel small, insignificant, and a general sense of “not enough” as an actor. We see the clients behind the table, often with a delicious spread in front of them. (“This cheese is for anyone, yeah?”) If we’re struggling with finances, we notice the nice clothes the clients are wearing. Meanwhile, we can’t wait for payday so we can finally buy a new pair of nicer dress shoes. All the while trying desperately not to make it obvious how much we’d really, really like to get cast so said paycheck can come sooner.

When this negative chatter goes off and running, focusing on disempowering thoughts and emotions, what are we supposed to do?

Returning home from the audition, I grabbed a snack (they didn’t share the cheese) and pulled up a Backstage article written by casting professionals. Slowly, started to develop a more empowering view of myself as an actor. Later in the evening when I was making dinner, I listened to a recorded coaching call I had saved where Dallas Travers shared some empowering ways to view yourself as an artist, specifically when it came to finances.

Since learning about the world of personal development, I’ve taken it upon myself to consume self-help books and podcasts. Just as important, I believe all actors should invest in professional development specifically for the craft. Read articles. Listen to acting podcasts. Consume positive and empowering content from the people who have been in your shoes and know what you’re going through. Doing this not only drowns out that negative chatter, it rewires our thinking so we believe, rightfully, “Yes. I am enough. They’re lucky to be seeing me today. I’m awesome for doing this.”

I’ll end with one of my new favorite mantras from “The Power of Vulnerability” by Brene Brown, an excellent author who writes on personal development and learning to dismiss that negative chatter: “Don’t shrink. Don’t puff up. Let yourself be seen.”

Don’t hide who you are, actors. Don’t overcompensate, either. Just let yourself be seen and trust that it’s enough. Let’s go get ‘em, friends.

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Thanks for reading!

By the way, I’m Tony. I live in Chicago. (Duh.) I’m an actor and blogger living right up the street from Wrigley Field. 

My blog is here to help others take control and live a more authentically positive life on their terms. Since working with a coach and learning more about personal development, I’ve started sharing my learnings with others. (I have a lot…)

If we’ve never meet – shoot me a tweet!  Would love to hear how you found this 🙂 

Wanna see more? Check out my actor website or YouTube channel!

Wanna make sure you never miss a post? Click the “Follow” button in the right corner to enter your email and subscribe! 

There’s nothing wrong with you. You don’t need fixing. But this might help…

I saw another friend yesterday post about how they were struggling with self esteem.

Automatically, I found myself furiously typing. “Here’s how I used to feel. Here’s how I feel now. Here are three things I recommend. And here are some ways to flip your perspective….”

I stopped.

Will this even matter? Will they actually listen to me? Who the hell am I to help this person? And how can I share this with them so that they take my advice, rather than dismiss it? 

I have this inner dialogue every time I see a friend share that they’re in pain. I hope someday to have a better way of helping them.

If I could share a message today for anyone – friend or other – who might be struggling with self esteem, this is what it would say:

At the risk of sounding like a broken record….

There’s nothing wrong with you. You don’t need fixing. You are not broken. You just suffer with incessant negative chatter. You’ve bought into one of the bullshit beliefs, like that other people’s opinions of you get to dictate your self confidence. Or that your resume dictates your self worth. 

I know the feeling. I’ve suffered it a lot. In fact, I still do. 

I don’t want you to suffer anymore. I hope you take the time to start reading personal development books, working with a life coach, and finding more positive people to spend time with that already have the confidence you desire. Do it. You can’t afford not to. And if you can’t do it for you – do it for someone you love. Someone you can’t bear to be in pain. You can help them by starting with yourself. 

Finally….stop taking yourself so damn seriously 🙂 Most of our problems go away in a day, a week, or a couple months. We find new problems. Don’t worry. This problem will go away and that future one will too. 

And when you forget all of this because you’re a normal human being who forgets stuff – no sweat. Just hit the reset button. Being perfect is s waste of time and energy, anyway.

I love you guys. 

 

I really do.

 

Let’s go get ’em.

 

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Thanks for reading!

By the way, I’m Tony. I live in Chicago. (Duh.) I’m an actor and blogger living right up the street from Wrigley Field. 

My blog is here to help others take control and live a more authentically positive life on their terms. Since working with a coach and learning more about personal development, I’ve started sharing my learnings with others. (I have a lot…)

If we’ve never meet – shoot me a tweet!  Would love to hear how you found this 🙂 

Wanna see more? Check out my actor website or YouTube channel!

Wanna make sure you never miss a post? Click the “Follow” button in the right corner to enter your email and subscribe! 

If you’re uncomfortable – say something

Quick announcement!! 

I’m going to be doing my first ever Empowerment for Actors workshop! 

Location: Next Door Chicago, 659 W Diversey 

Date: Sunday December 18th, 7:30PM 

Cost: Free

Check the bottom of this post for more! 

It was day two of the RSNA conference at McCormick Place. I was working. As a live model. 

And let me tell you folks – while yours truly weighs 140 and is tall and lanky – he is a killer live model! Many a doctor have raved about how clearly Tony Rossi anatomy comes through via ultra sound.  

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Disclaimer: We all do this as willing participants. We get emails asking if we want to participate. We then get a booking email. Upon arrival, we sign a form agreeing to participate and recognizing we can withdraw at any time. So if we later decide, “Nah, I’d rather not expose my anatomy to a bunch of strangers today,” we get to do that. 

How being an ultra sound model works: You lay on a table, much like the one you would see in a visit to the doctor’s office. A doctor then performs an ultra sound on you on whichever body part is being examined that session. 

Now typically, my least favorite day of the sessions is abdomen day. In order to see our abdomen accurately, we’re asked not to eat before arriving. I. DO. NOT. LIKE. NOT. EATING. But this year, I found myself with a new session to dislike: Pelvis day. I had never done this one before. 

“Ah,” I thought. “So that’s why the email told us to make sure we were wearing boxers….” Still, I didn’t think it would be a big deal. I’m comfortable with my body, and I didn’t mind them moving the probe a little lower. 

The session began. I didn’t like it. The session continued….and I really didn’t like it. These guys were getting the probe right up there. “HEY!” I thought to myself, “I MIGHT BE SINGLE AGAIN BUT THAT AREA IS RESERVED!” 

All joking aside, I was very uncomfortable. And I didn’t know how to express this without upsetting people or compromising my paycheck for the day. Fortunately, my doctor was a very nice person with excellent bedside manners. He continued to ask me if I was okay. He reminded me that we could stop if I wanted to. I nearly did. I nearly spoke up. Inside, part of me was screaming to say, “You know, I really would actually like to stop. I’m sorry for being an inconvenience when I know this is what you’re all here to see, but I actually was mentally unprepared for this particular session. I’d feel comfortable if we stopped.” 

But each time I thought this, another voice chimed in. It had some other thoughts: 

 

Tony. These doctors flew in from around the world to get hands on experience for this. They need you to participate.

You’d be causing a major inconvenience if you asked to stop. You know you’re going to really upset them if you back out, right? 

Remember you’re getting paid for this? You need the money. And besides, you woke up at 5:30am to be here….don’t blow this. 

 

Now, had I realized what this session was going to entail before signing up, I probably would have declined. Now I know I should ask what body parts they’re scanning if I participate in the future. It was the sudden “Hey, we’re about to stick this stick really close to some intimate areas! You ready?” that caught me off guard – so much so that I didn’t have the courage to speak up. There was all this imagined pressure and it was easier to keep saying I was fine. But the truth was I felt very uncomfortable and trapped. 

Another disclaimer? Sure! ONE MORE TIME! This was a very safe space. I was in the room with respectful people. I’m grateful that I learned this lesson in such a safe space. 

I still wanted to share this story because we’re living in a time where a lot of people are coming out with stories of being physically abused in inappropriate ways. I can see how very easy it would be for someone to not speak up when caught with a sudden, “Hey, you’re cool with this, right?” when working as an actor in a play or a film. If I hadn’t had this experience, I probably would have gone along with whatever the director had asked me to do if I was thrown a curveball on set. 

I hope that everyone gains the courage to speak up. Our respect for ourselves speaks more volume than any paycheck can provide. 

Feel free to pass on if this would be helpful for another friend to hear. And if this resonates with you, I’d love it if you would leave a quick comment saying so, or to shoot me a tweet

Let’s be brave. 

Let’s go get ‘em, friends. 

 

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Hey acting friends….

Have you ever said the following?? ( I have…)

“I’m stressed and can’t enjoy myself. I thought this was supposed to be fun?”
“I’m getting discouraged with the amount of rejection I keep getting.”
“I want to get the part, but I feel like everyone is angry at me when I audition. I don’t want to feel like I’m not wanted.”
“Paying the bills is just draining me…”

NEXT WEEK I’ll be doing my first ever live workshop!

Some things we’ll cover….

-More empowering ways to view auditioning
-What to do when you feel like people are upset at you for being in the room (auditions, rehearsals, etc)
-Start seeing networking as something fun
-I’ll give you a “start doing” and “stop doing” list for when it comes to an acting career
-I’ll share some exercises on “how to be happy without the fluffy BS” that I came up with myself

Sunday December 18th @ 7:30pm
Next Door Chicago – 659 W Diversey

ONLY 10 SPOTS!

(Oh, and it’s free)

Email tony.rossi@gmail.com for questions or to RSVP

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Thanks for reading!

By the way, I’m Tony. I live in Chicago. (Duh.) I’m an actor and blogger living right up the street from Wrigley Field. 

My blog is here to help others take control and live a more authentically positive life on their terms. Since working with a coach and learning more about personal development, I’ve started sharing my learnings with others. (I have a lot…)

If we’ve never meet – shoot me a tweet!  Would love to hear how you found this 🙂 

Wanna see more? Check out my actor website or YouTube channel!

Wanna make sure you never miss a post? Click the “Follow” button in the right corner to enter your email and subscribe! 

You don’t suck

Post originally written for parlepost.com

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Quote: Jen Sincero

Ever have someone hate you?

I once was tweeting with a director. (Yes. Tweeting with a director. It’s a thing.)

I had auditioned for him previously. He suggested we meet up for coffee. “Yes please!” Unfortunately it never happened. I stopped hearing from him. I attempted to connect with him on Facebook, but he never accepted. This did wonders for my self esteem.

Click here to read full post! 

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Tony. Why do I have to click links?” 

I’m a contributing writer to parlepost.com. In the hopes that I can stay on the team, I’ve asked readers to check out my content on their page.

“So like, is this content any different?” 

Nope! Still me talking in my own voice about taking control and being a happier person.

“Does this mean you’re done posting original content here?” 

Nope! But I’ll be linking the post that are up.

“Okay fine. I kind of like your content regardless. Are you, like, available for hire?”

You bet. Shoot me an email at tony.rossi@gmail.com to discuss what you’re looking for and we’ll see if I’m a good fit!

Dear Actors…..

Hi. It’s Tony.

You might know me, you might not. (Either way it’s cool.)

I just wanted to share some thoughts with you as a 29 year old actor, still working day jobs, and very much looking forward to…not working day jobs. I’m not where I want to be yet. And I have my share of “Am I doing this right?” days. That said – I know I’m exactly where I need to be and exactly on the right track.

Three years ago, I started reading personal development books. “Tony… I’ve never heard of personal development.” Here’s the Tony-version: Personal development involves books, materials, and other types of formal/informal training that either give you a better understanding of yourself or of others. You’ll learn about these things in a positive and productive way. With consistent application, you become more realistic about your goals while remaining optimistic about the obstacles. 

Personal development has changed my life in a lot of ways. But if I had to sum it up in one word, it’d be this one: confidence. I feel better about myself. I feel better about how I look. I feel unstoppable when it comes to my goals. It’s pretty bad ass. And because of personal development, I’ve found I bring a better “Tony 2.0” to my acting career. I’m unapologetic for who I am as a person, so I’m unapologetic when I audition. I’m more confident when presenting myself. And if I mess up in class – eh. It makes me more human. Not a bad thing at all. 

This wonderful thing I found isn’t something everyone knows about. I see a lot of people who could be crushing it in their field, if only they had more confidence. But fear not, friends. I got good news: Personal development can be learned by anyone. In fact, you’re hearing this from a guy who use to loathe reading. (Unless the title started with “Harry Potter and….”) 

So if you’re not a reader, not into personal development, and haven’t yet gained that confidence that you year for, I’ll share a little secret with you that I picked up. This is just for you. And it’s this – You are awesome. 

Seriously. You’re a badass. Think about it: You’re purusing an acting career. You’re here for a reason. And unless you find yourself hating the stage, hating the camera, or dreading the thought of your friends and family all crowding on the couch to watch your debut on Chicago Fire, please know you’re doing the right thing and you’re on the right path. (Especially if you think you’re, like, way behind from where you should be.)

So do yourself a favor – realize right now – yes, RIGHT NOW – that you’re a badass and don’t need to apologize for any “imperfections” that may or may not exist. You’re not doing the class a disservice by bringing your weird interpretation to the role. You’re not bothering the casting associates who are sitting in for your general call. If they are bothered, it’s because they need a career change – not you. So take charge. Acknowledge your inner awesomeness. You. Fucking. Deserve it. 

It’s time you acknowledged it. Actually, you should have started this yesterday, but I’ll cut you some slack. So please. There’s a lot of people out there waiting for you to show up, be you, and even pay you for doing what you love. 

Let’s go get ‘em. 

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PS – If you’re a Salem State University student, please hear these words…but also realize you’re on the right track. After sitting in and chatting with you guys this past week, I’ve found that you guys are well aware of just how fucking awesome you are. Kudos, my 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 write blogs 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 attony.rossi@gmail.com

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

What to do when you feel like you’re undeserving (like I did last week)

It’s funny how quickly we can talk ourselves out of something we want. 

I personally experience this a lot when it comes to what other people will think of me. 

“You want to do…what?” 

“Why do you think you deserve to to that?” 

“You do realize you’re a [insert reason here why I can’t have that thing I’m asking for because I’m too young, too behind in my career, etc], right?” 

Of course, these are all thoughts I’ve made up in my head. And yet, they still come to mind quite frequently. 

Which is why I was surprised to find myself turning my bike around to head into the Steppenwolf box office Sunday night. 

It was Opening Night for “Straight White Men.” It wasn’t on their calendar. They weren’t selling tickets. Yet there I was, dismounting my bike, and peeking through the glass to see if the box office was even open. 

They were. 

The following is a close description of what I said upon walking up to the window: 

“Hi! Okay, like, I know this is a long shot, but like….and I know you aren’t exactly selling tickets for tonight’s press opening of Straight White Men but like…do you, maybe, have anything available for tonight’s show?” 

…they didn’t. 

I exited. As I did, I recognized the playwright, Young Jean Lee, exiting the theatre. She was with two other people dressed nicely. They all looked very important – much more importantly than the guy who just asked for tickets to opening night of the show that wasn’t even being advertised. (Side note: This, of course, was my perspective given my situation.) There I was – a non union actor with a non union agent, with a laundry list of Chicago acting goals in his journal back home, who was walking behind them out of the theatre. 

Needless to say – I was not exactly feeling on top of the world. But here’s the crazy part – the box office staff responded in a manner I was NOT expecting:

“Yeah man! Sorry, I got nothing for tonight. But like, yeah! I mean…please come back and see us!” 

He almost seemed apologetic for not having anything for me. For not having any seats for the show that wasn’t even on the calendar. 

Here’s the thing, friends: We come up with all sorts of reasons in our head why we aren’t enough and why we don’t deserve our big, crazy, ridiculous goals. The goals that are literally triple the size of our checking account. And yet, sometimes we still get a kind reply – or an apologetic reply – that it’s just not our time yet – from the Universe. (Or the dude from Steppenwolf Box Office. I need to get his name.) 

Our goals do not dictate our awesomeness. We are awesome and deserving exactly where we are today. 

Oh, and wanna know the best part? 

I may or may not have crashed their after party. Here’s a recap: 

-I mingled with a few of the actors.

-I had an ever so short interaction with playwright Young Jean Lee. 

-I had an awesome chat with some of the costume team.

-I was told by one of the designers from the New York team, “You’re going to be on this stage one day.” 

Here’s the thing: These were nice, awesome and inspiring people. I’m willing to bet they’d be just as nice to any other actor in my position. And yet, it helped. It made me feel deserving. 

But let’s pretend we didn’t crash the after party and didn’t get this reassurance from people we respect and want to emulate. The words I heard that night that gave me so much confidence were something I could have chosen to feel confident about regardless. 

I want you to feel confident regardless of your situation too. 

You are awesome. You are deserving. If you have an opportunity – please take it. 

Sound good? Good. 

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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 Happens When We Make Assumptions

I’ve shared a lot in the past about that negative voice who chimes in from time to time.

Sometimes this voice tells us we’re not good enough. Sometimes it talks us out of doing something we know we should do. Other times, it just makes stuff up.

Today was a day where that negative voice was just making stuff up.

I was training a group of employees as part of a non acting gig I help out with. Perhaps it was the lack of sleep the night before. Maybe it was being in an environment that had a lot of uncertainty. For whatever reason, the negative voice was being extra loud today. I was asking myself a lot of questions prior to getting there…and they weren’t too positive:

-Am I going to be good enough?

-Will the management dislike me and wish someone older/more experienced was here?

-Is this going to be one of those trainings where the employees can’t wait to leave?

I arrived with all of my materials and supplies…and saw two people were there.

-Oh god. It’s so quiet. They’re going to hate this.

-I’m going to breeze through this in two minutes and not have enough information to share.

-They’re totally going to expect more hands-on activities than I have prepared.

Friends, an interesting thing happens when we start to assume things: We connect the dots ourselves. We create answers that are often false or exaggerated. The truth was, I was creating yet another gloom and doom scenario.I was also making up answers based false information the negative voice was feeding me.

So how did it actually go?

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-About a dozen employees were there in total.

-….they were delightful!

-Questions were asked, notes were taken, and their response was positive. 

-They also laughed at my jokes. (Always a win)

This wasn’t an acting gig, yet I left with a big smile on my face. I even had the courage to ask them to take a picture at the end – something I was sure that would make them groan and roll their eyes…

“Oh sure! We’d love to! Stay in our seats? Oh no, we’ll stand for you…”

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Making assumptions based on negative self talk and inexperience will just lead to stress.

Don’t do it. Remind yourself that you’re an amazing person who didn’t end up in your situation by accident. Instill belief in yourself so you can perform what you know, deep down, you’re capable of doing. 

Go get ‘em.

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You know you’re in a good mood when you take a selfie on the CTA!
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How to Handle Fear Without Getting Rid of It

UPDATE: Between reading, audio books, youtube videos, and team calls, I get in a lot of personal development. Because of this, I get a bit confused sometimes on where I learned the theme. I’ll start keeping better track in order to give credit where credit is due. 

As it turns out, this analogy was used in “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert. 

….I have yet to read the book (but it’s on my list!) I’m guessing I heard the concept on a team call, hosted by Ali Goodman. She’s always giving me gems on our team meetings. It’s also possible I heard the concept from a recent call for Courtney Rioux’s #MyBigYear2016 program. 

….can’t you tell I’m surrounded by awesome people? 

While I’m grateful to have these BRILLIANT words posted here for all to read, the credit goes to these folks for this one. Read on! 

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I always needed a ride somewhere growing up: School, rehearsals, summer theatre workshops, band practice, you name it. I needed to be there. (I was very important as a child).

Of course, you can’t just assume Mom and Dad can take you everywhere. They have lives too. Luckily for them, there’s this fantastic thing called carpooling. Here’s the thing about carpooling as a child: You don’t have a say in who rides with you. This can be unpleasant if you’re riding with someone you don’t want to ride with.

Buckle up, friends. We’re about to get in a car with someone rather unpleasant:

…Fear.

Even when we want it to leave the car, it doesn’t leave when we ask politely. Understand that when this happens, we don’t have to panic. In fact, we can drive ahead with fear sitting there in the car. Here’s how:

1) Accept that fear is allowed to ride with us.

Fear is going to show up at some very inconvenient times. If you’re an actor, you might get scared before a big audition. If you’re in sales, you might get scared before calling up a prospect. If you’re a single guy living by yourself, you might get scared every time you pass by a cute girl in your building…

Regardless of the situation, fear often comes up when we don’t want it to. I recommend accepting that it’s along for the ride. Often when we don’t acknowledge our negative emotions, we’re not accepting that there’s a problem. If we’re not accepting reality, how can we fix it?

2) Don’t feed fear with time.

Do you have something on your to-do list that makes you really uncomfortable? Get it done and get it done now. The more time we give it, the stronger fear gets. It leads to a lack of confidence. While sometimes we need a little prep time, don’t mistake that with procrastinating. The sooner you can cross this off your list, the better.

3) Fight fear with confidence.

Fear might be allowed for the ride. But it sure as hell doesn’t get to drive. Fear sits in the back. The best way to move forward, despite the fear, is having confidence.

Once you start getting results on your road to your goals, you’re going to notice the fear less and less. Auditions are less scary when you start booking more projects. Sales are less scary when you start gaining more clients. And that girl in your apartment? Okay she’s still intimidating…but she’s less intimidating if you know her name and know she likes puppies. (That’s just a guess.)

The more confident we get, the less we listen to fear. Without results, you might have to fake it a bit in the beginning. Take this time to feed off of encouragement from those close to you. Even if it’s in an area unrelated to your goals. Use whatever you can to fuel your confidence until you start seeing results.

So understand these points as you go about your own road to your scary (but awesome) goals: Fear is allowed for the ride. Fear is not allowed to drive. It feeds off of time – so don’t give it any. Get the uncomfortable things done early in the day. Then do what you can to gain confidence.

Also, there’s a fourth option that involves no fear: You can avoid the scary road altogether and not get in the car at all.

…..but that would lead to living a crazy, awesome, and happier life now, would it?

Go get ‘em, friends.

An important letter to read when you’re feeling frustrated

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Hi there!

Really glad you’re reaching out. I realize that chatting with me seems kind of silly, so I really appreciate what you’re doing here. Let’s get down to business.

First off, congratulations! I’m so glad that you’ve been taking action towards something that you really want. I understand that you’re not where you want to be right now – don’t worry, I’ll address that shortly. But I want you to know how proud I am of you for getting where you are now. Even if you are far away from the overall goal, you’re taking action. That’s a success. Always celebrate your successes.

Now let’s talk about this negativity you’ve been feeling lately: This is normal. After the honeymoon phase of “Hooray! I’m taking action and everything is wonderful and smells like peaches!” phase is over, you’re bound to run into some obstacles (though it certainly doesn’t hurt to have peaches around the apartment). From here on out, I need you to pay attention to when that negativity creeps in.

Ever hear that negative voice when you reach an obstacle? You’ll hear things like, “You’re not good enough,” or “You’ll never get this done”? I like to call this guy, “asshole voice.” The more you listen to asshole voice, the more you’re going to believe it. And that’s when you’ll find yourself getting more and more frustrated. Hence where you’re at right now.

So what are you supposed to do whenever that voice creeps back in? There are two options:

1) Come find me. Then we’ll have this talk again so I can remind you how awesome you are. Remember what we talked about in the beginning? How happy I am for you that you’re taking action and for getting to this point? I’m not saying this just to kiss your ass. (Although you do have a great ass, if I say so myself). I’m saying it because it’s TRUE. You are awesome, and you’re doing awesome work. Don’t listen to asshole voice telling you otherwise.

That being said, there are going to be times when you don’t feel like listening to me (which is outrageous!…but understandable). When this happens, you have another option.

2) Find a friend to talk to. A real friend. Someone who always listens and doesn’t criticize you. We have lots of friends who are easy to reach out to. But for this specific example, I want you to get in touch with one of those people who always makes you feel awesome.

I don’t wanna be too redundant here, but please, remember the message: You are kicking ass right now. Try to remind yourself of this when asshole voice comes back.

Talk soon,

Your inside voice who gives you confidence.

Okay everyone, I just want to say a few words about the above letter.

*Guys in the back from last week grumble because they thought we were done*

Don’t worry, I’ll be quick!

*Guys in the back cheer!*

Sometimes we forget about our voice that gives us confidence. Usually it’s because we’ve encountered new obstacles that we didn’t consider when mapping out our goals. This is when asshole voice creeps in and tells us that we’re not going to be able to achieve them.

Bullshit.

Find that inner voice who loves us. If you’re feeling too frustrated to listen, find a friend!  It’s always helpful to get encouragement from others.

And it doesn’t hurt to tell yourself you have a nice ass.