Saturday, June 30, 2012

When good is not quite good're getting better

Happy Summer again yall!!

Its good to speak with you always. I hope you are all doing well and taking a step closer to your dream whatever it may be. I'm doing my best and I look forward to telling you all about a major TV or film appearance that I will be making. Soon enough guys :)

Today i'm going to share another emotional evening in my life as me. I do it for a good cause of course...that cause is so that we can all learn (or re-learn) from it and push ourselves to higher levels in our professional and personal lives. Also, I do love you guys and I promised to always be honest with y'all.

A few years into my acting training at Beverly Hills Playhouse I had a BIG scene coming up. My good friend Torrey and I (shout out to him, his fam and NOLA) were doing a scene from a new play that was a story based around Hurricane Katrina. The play did a month run in LA before we performed the scene in class. I saw it and had the script and the scene for a good while. I worked on this thing like never before. I really felt this was a scene that I could show nearly all my skills. Part of the reason that I worked so hard on this scene was a chance meeting with Gerard Butler a little while earlier. Total nice guy and when I asked him about getting to the big time in the business he mentioned two things 1. Just keep auditioning and 2. Put your work in on scenes in class and aim for great..not good. I agreed so I made it a point to step up all my scene prep work after his wisdom. I felt like my acting skill and technique was improving exponentially. I was so amped!

Long-ish story short we get to performance night. I'm feeling ready and open to show my art and work. The scene goes and it was not nearly as great as I wanted or expected. It was amateurish, sloppy, but with some good emotion and connection between the actors. During the critique while giving some general notes my teacher, Art, looked at me and asked what the matter was. I was nearly in tears. I let the tears go and I said "I cant work like this. I should leave this F*****g town if this is the best I can do. I put in time, hours and this was bull****. You guys (my classmates) deserve better because you put up better. I singled out (in a positive way) two of my class mates Lindi and Nick to tell them "When you guys put up a scene with this much prep time its f****g awesome..this was total high school bull***t". To Nick and Lindi, I hope that didnt embarrass you when I said that as it was meant as a high compliment. I never apologized and I do now for what its worth.

My teacher called me to sit back down as I was pacing and screaming and crying. So I did. We kept talking, I was almost inconsolable. He told me that the scene had problems but it wasnt that bad and then I uttered the mantra that drives my acting career every day..Full tears in my eyes I looked at my teacher and yelled.. "TO BE GOOD IS NOT GOOD ENOUGH WHEN YOU DREAM OF BEING GREAT". The room kinda went silent. My classmate Kristin C was in the front row and she shed a little bit of a tear as she was feeling me. Thanks Kristin!!!

My acting teacher shared some wisdom too. Nobody will be the "greatest" actor in town as its subjective. Thats very true. Its about being the best YOU that you can be. Also very true. That being said, I stand 1000% behind what I said. Good and great are different things guys. Being good at something and being great at something will leave you in two different parts of your desired field. More importantly its a choice. If you are willing to accept good...thats fine. Go for that. Others of us are only going to accept "Great". You will never be known as the greatest actor in Hollywood but you can be a "great" actor in an absolute sense. To achieve that greatness you have to shoot for that every time you perform and prepare to perform. If you have ever been good at something, you know the difference between good and great. There is a difference..and its a clear difference. You cant be great at everything to be sure. Think about the most important thing or skill that you want to develop in your life. Dont accept "good enough" in that thing. Put your energies towards being GREAT at it. I promise it will help you live the best life you can. All it takes is a little more effort and focus, consistently, to put you in position for greatness

The inspirational quote of today bears repeating..

"To be good is not good enough when you dream of being great"

The next time you start doing something relating to that thing you want to be great at..whether its acting, singing, accounting, coaching, parenting, fighting, football, basketball or painting, remind yourself of this mantra. You will find that you may not achieve greatness in that particular event but the PURSUIT OF GREATNESS with all your energy will get your juices flowing

Thanks for listening guys..Have a great day and hit me up on twitter


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Reshape your hunk of clay

Greetings Super Heroes!

As always I hope everyone is doing well and living their life to the fullest. One of my great mentors used to talk to me a lot about "sharing your toys". In other words the things you have that help you, share them with others who you think can benefit. Along with being a creative outlet for my writing and a chronicle of my journey, that is part of what this blog is about. Besides, I feel great helping someone else adjust their mentality to be a little more positive and to BELIEVE in their own opportunity for success. Yes, we all have an opportunity to succeed in this life. :) Anywho....

Years ago, my sister gave me a book that would change my life. The book was "The 48 Laws of Power". Those of you who are close friends know that I SWEAR by this book and highly recommend it to anyone who is open to changing their way of viewing themselves and the world. In what might go down as the worst teaser ever, I will likely write blog posts relating to many of the 48 laws as they constantly make appearances in my daily life and work. Of all the laws mentioned in the book, the law that spoke loudest to me upon my first reading of the book was the 25th Law. Simply stated the law is composed of two words that together make a very profound statement...


Simple right? Profoundly so, in my opinion. The law continues by saying "Do NOT accept the roles that society foists on you. Re-create yourself by forging a new identity, one that commands attention and never bores the audience. Be the master of your own image rather than letting others define it for you." That's powerful stuff! Taking control of your image, your "self" and your life is a hallmark of successful people in all walks of life. It does not matter who (or what) you were before reading this, you can choose to create a new and better you. We all know people who have accepted whatever they were given in life when we know they could do either 1. So much more or 2. Live a life that fulfilled them. You cant want it for them more than they want it for themselves. So lets talk about why YOU should want it.

So that we are clear please understand this, the world wants to assign you a role in life. Once you accept that role you are doomed and you are limited to whatever happiness, freedom and fulfillment is allotted to that role. Instead of accepting that, be defiant and forge your own identity. An identity that is of your own making that has NO BOUNDARIES assigned to it by and envious and resentful world. This profound act of defiance makes you responsible for your own creation. 

The beginning of recreating yourself is becoming self-aware. Who are you? What are you about? What do you believe? What don't you like about the role/life you have now? What do you really want to do? These are tough questions to be sure. Questions where you have to be supremely and brutally honest with yourself. Its really tough to look at a job or a long standing habit and acknowledge that this is NOT what I want to be any more. Being a teacher for 10 years and realizing that you want to recreate yourself as an entrepreneur or a novelist would be a shock initially to your system. Once you do and decide to recreate yourself, you will be propelled forward to the work it will take for you to create this new and improved you. Again, a new YOU of your own creation.

Remember guys, the character you seem to have been born with is not necessarily who you are. Beyond the physical characteristics you got from your parents, your friends, peers and experiences have shaped who you are. The task of recreating yourself requires you to take control of the process and stop allowing others the power of molding (and limiting) you. Working on yourself should be one of your greatest and most pleasurable life tasks. It makes you an artist, an artist creating yourself. What you do to mold your hunk of clay is up to you. You might be asking what are some of the things that have been part of my evolution??  

Painting....Acting Training...Commitment to Fitness....Learning new languages...Fashion...Learning to cook...Martial Arts....Voice Lessons...Travel to very exotic work

All these things I am constantly working on. Because these are the things (among others) that have helped me create who I am NOW vs who I was years ago. You can do it if you wish as well. If you want to think about it from an even simpler perspective...take the oath. Take a look at your say to yourself

I will be in control of my life and my self..I will not let people or my circumstance dictate who I am. I will be who I WANT TO BE and live the life I WANT TO LIVE

Sometime change starts with making a commitment to yourself :)

Our inspiration for the week...
If you're not making mistakes, then you're not doing anything. I'm positive that a doer makes mistakes.

Thanks for reading guys!! Hit me up on twitter or email with any questions or comments