Why there’s nothing wrong with you (even though you think there is)

I recently had a class with Robyn Coffin.

Robyn is a Chicago actress best known for playing Cindy Herrmann on Chicago Fire. She’s a teacher at Vagabond School of the Arts and just an all around delightful human being.

And perhaps most important of all, she’s also had the honor of being the first ever guest on the Tony Rossi Show Podcast. (It’s like, a really big deal…)

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Last week in class, Robyn shared a powerful lesson on how we all learn lines differently – some are auditory learners. Some are visual. And some need to be sitting in their favorite chair with a glass of wine, while visualizing the day that, they too, are an honored guest on the Tony Rossi show. (She’d didn’t flat out share this last point, but it was pretty obvious through the tone of her voice…..)

We also discussed how different things may be challenging to us due to our nature. For example, she shared how hard math was for her because she was a lefty!

What this really highlighted for me was how we’re all different and we each have different learning styles….

And yet – how often do we try to “fit in” by assuming that there’s a one size fit all approach??

“There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach” – Robyn Coffin. (Who said this in class and I wrote it down but she might have said it differently so don’t please don’t anyone sue me….)

I tried fitting in a lot in high school….and quickly realized it wasn’t working. I was a skinny male, loved musical theatre, never had a serious girlfriend, and didn’t look like any of the popular kids….so naturally I just put two and two together and realized I might be gay…..

…even though I was never attracted to men.

One of my favorite things about being involved as a member of the Chicago acting community is that I get to hear the perspective of my peers. They too have their struggles. They too feel like they’re “not enough” at times. They too wonder, “Is this acting thing ever gonna work out?”

Guys. We are enough. And we’re enough regardless of whether or not we’re “like” anyone else.

As Darren Hardy recently said on one of his darrendaily’s – if something is popular, there’s a good chance it’s not worth pursuing.

So relax and ENJOY that you’re different. It’s okay to have your own style. And realize that there’s others just like you who are going to love you for being your unique, awkward, and #notperfect self.

Let’s go get ‘em, friends.

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Hey! Did you check out the Tony Rossi Show podcast yet? 

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 🙂You can also find me on facebook, instagramYouTube, or check out my actor website

Oh – and I’m now on iTunes! #TonyRossiShow

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You’re allowed to feel shitty today

Ever find yourself in a mood and beating yourself up for feeling (insert your favorite negative mood here)?

Just yesterday I found myself in one of those moods. Don’t get me wrong – the day had a good start. It was an early morning, but an easy shift with some positive people.

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I don’t usually like gigs like these….but the staff at Bisnow are wonderful. 

The thing is, these shifts make for a very early wake up. Like, a 4:30am wake up. And of course I got to bed late the night previously after my Vagabond School class. Oh, and I just so happened to have a show later that evening.

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Aren’t we cute? Grateful for Broken Nose Theatre this group of people right here

“No worries!” I thought. ” I can totally take my time to rest, nap, and take it easy in between….”

….except I still haven’t figured out this nap thing. ( Like seriously!)

I experienced my normal symptoms of feeling tired, groggy, and cranky following my nap. I wasn’t happy. Which of course led me to get upset about anything and everything for the rest of the afternoon.

And then I said to myself, “You know what – it’s okay to feel shitty today.” And the minute I told myself this, I felt better.

Funny how much pressure we take off ourselves the minute we stop trying to do things right or perfect.

I hope that the next time you’re in a cranky mood, regardless of the reason, you cut yourself some slack and remember, “Hey. I’m human. I’m not a terrible person for being #notperfect.”

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Write it down. Hang it up. I swear it helps.

 

Let’s go get ’em, friends.

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Thanks for reading, friends. 

If you don’t know me – I’m Tony. I live in Chicago. 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…)

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

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

Are you a critic like me?

Did I ever tell you guys I used to be a critic? I was a damn good one…

Despite my commitment to personal growth and development, I was very good at critiquing those that I could best learn from. This happened a lot in acting classes. When the teacher was talking, I could always find something I didn’t like about their tone of voice. Sometimes I didn’t like that they always laughed at things I didn’t find funny. Other times I’d get upset when a student asked a particular question or sounded over confident.

This also happened anytime I was listening to a training call or attending an event related to my job helping others with their health. I would get bothered when the person hosting the call continued to say something similar each week.  I found myself annoyed if the presenter didn’t take into consideration how long the day had been or how tired I was. (I could always find a reason even if I slept well…)

This especially happened anytime I watched a video that was supposed to help me with my personal growth. “Did that speaker really just fumble over that part?” “Oh sure, that’s easy for him to say now that he’s successful…” “Great, now he’s going to tell us all the reasons why we should buy something from him….”

It’s a shame I wasn’t getting paid to be a critic. I could have made a lot of money.

I’m embarrassed to admit that I was doing this silent critiquing up until very recently. Somehow and somewhere, in between all that reading and audio listening, a question popped into my head:

“Is this person actually trying to bother me? Or are they trying to help?”

(Someone tweet that….I always wanted a blog with a link for people to tweet my words of wisdom…)

More often than not, the people we get bothered by aren’t trying to hurt us. In all of the examples I just shared, most of these people were trying to help me. While I heard their words, I wasn’t actually absorbing the lesson as well as I could have because I was too busy critiquing and getting upset by mundane things.

Do you ever find yourself doing the same thing? If you do, consider the following:

This person really wants to help. This especially applies if it’s a teacher, instructor, or anyone in a field where their job is based on the success of others.

Let the anger go.  When you start to recognize that anger? Acknowledge it, then let it go. Try silently thanking the person in your head. They’re doing you a favor right now whether you like their tone or not.

Successful people care about helping others. The money they ask for is helping them create more materials and content to continue helping – not just so they can take a cruise. Also consider the very successful ones – the big guys like Tony Robbins, Darren Hardy, or Michael McCracken – don’t need more money. They could retire. They ask for money because they want to continue helping.

 

 

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Okay….Michael just had a second baby….maybe consider throwing in an extra dollar in the coffee jar next time you use the Keurig at Vagabond School of the Arts 

 

Do any of these thoughts resonate with you? I’d love to hear which ones in the comments below. (And I won’t even charge you 😉 )

Now, if this does happen with you a lot…don’t kick yourself. You’re not doing it because you’re a bad person. You’re doing it because you’re human. When we’re human, we have a tendency to mess up every now and then. Doesn’t make us bad people. And we can always change.

Let’s go get ‘em, friends.

 

 

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PS – Like the photo of me and Michael? It was taken by Gretchen Kelley from Gretchen Kelley Photography. She also did my headshots. I kind of like them. Check out her website if you’re looking for new ones yourself 🙂 

#ShoutOutTuesday: Robyn Coffin

It’s #ShoutOutTuesday!

I’m on a mission to be my most positive, healthy, and creative self.

I’ve decided to expand on this mission by shouting out cool people I connect with. These are people who are doing something with their lives who not only inspire me to be my best, but are doing work that I think others should know about.

Today’s Shout Out: Robyn Coffin

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The year was 2011. It had been less than a year since I moved to Chicago. I found myself cast in a play about baseball called “Black and Blue” by Factory Theatre.  I was thrilled. Though I had no clue this would be more than just a credit on my resume.

Not only was there a solid cast of cool artists,  the company members were often present and incredibly friendly. This community was just what I needed, having not made many friends. After this experience, I’m happy to say I made many. One of said friends includes Robyn.

At the time Robyn was an actress who was also waiting tables. Today? Admittedly I haven’t asked her how she pays the bulk of her bills. But I’m pretty sure serving isn’t in the picture.

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Many know Robyn for playing Cindy Herrmann on the hit NBC show Chicago Fire.  Some also know her as an acting instructor at Vagabond School of the Arts. Or if you’re friends with her on facebook, you know her from these gigs, her frequent bookings, but above all – her friendship.

Robyn gets a shout out not because of her resume (though it’s pretty spiffy too). She gets a shout out because of who she is with that resume. Anytime she enters a room, she gets everyone either smiling or laughing. Often laughing. Please, someone tell me of a time where Robyn Coffin’s wicked sense of humor didn’t make you laugh!

So if you haven’t familiarized yourself with Robyn, now’s the time 🙂 Check out her IMDB page (above) or her private coaching and classes she offers. Or, if you’re like me and enjoy podcasts, give this a listen.

 

Robyn, you’re a great example of what Chicago is all about: A great person, does what she loves, and adds value to others through your work friendship.

Keep going, my friend. We’re all rooting for you 🙂
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Be happy. That thing you’re worried about? Future-you isn’t even thinking about it right now 🙂