The Mindful Actor

Hello! Welcome to my blog.

I’ve always wanted to write a blog but I was never sure what I would write about. I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s going to be out two things: Acting and Anxiety. How does one cope as an actor in an industry that involves mostly waiting or creating? What can we do outside of auditions and how do we prepare ourselves mentally for when we finally do land the job? These are all thoughts that have been swimming around in my head for the past year. I am currently one year out of drama school, biting my nails in front of my computer, itching to know what is next. What next during COVID19? What next for acting? And what next for anxiety?

Anxiety has been a suspect of many downfalls and breakdowns in my life and it’s something I’ve always wished that I could combat once and for all. However it is something that is always there and will never disappear completely. My favourite meditation app ‘Headspace’ mentions in its ‘Managing Anxiety’ course that it’s changing the relationship with anxiety that is the key. It’s knowing that it’s always there and it all starts with ‘noticeing’ it when it comes lurking. When the jitters start, I start with ‘noticeing’ and then move onto focusing on my breathing – in through the nose, out through the mouth, all that. And if none of that works I collapse in a fit on the floor. Only joking, I have a few things that calm me down.

Schitt’s Creek, a hot shower and a cup of camomile tea are a few sure ways to pull me back down to earth. I’m at a point where I can’t even down one cup of coffee because of the difficulties I face when it comes to blending anxiety with caffeine. Thank goodness for tea. Just like anxiety, tea is always there. Unfortunately I can’t really take my hot shower and teapot with me into the audition room. So what can I really do? Notice, Breathe in and out, and come back to me. What do I need in this moment? Over the next few weeks I will be discussing a number of personal tips and tricks to deal with anxiety and mental health in general. Thank you for reading.

-Jess

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