Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Auditions Can Really Be That Bad

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Auditions Can Really Be That Bad

Auditions Can Really Be That Bad

I wrote last week how being on TV is fun.

Auditions, however, not so much.

Have you seen the Academy Award winning movie La La Land? I rented it last weekend and was charmed. And more than a little horrified by a couple of the auditions Emma Stone’s character, Mia, had to endure. True, I’ve never had a casting director take a phone call in the middle of my highly emotional audition…yet, being an actor, I can imagine what that would feel like. (By the way, Stone deserved her Oscar for that scene alone, in my humble opinion, not to mention all that singing and dancing, and how impressed I’ve been by her work in other films.)

I’m writing this after an…audition. Across town in north Portland. For a short film. I believe the audition went well, even though I flubbed some words. The director said encouraging things. But then I felt my last short film audition went great, too; that director also said encouraging things, and I didn’t get the part. I really wanted that part.

Sometimes you just don’t know. And the truth of the matter is…if you fit the “look” the director has in mind, that’s 75% of the battle; regardless of how talented or skilled you are as an actor. Sometimes you’re just not right for the part physically. Other times, you just blow it. And you know you blew it. That sucks big time.

While I’m awaiting the results of my audition, here are four things to remember – not just for auditions, but for anything in life you want, but you have to go through something you don’t want – to get there. Like a job interview. A public presentation. Meeting the potential in-laws. Or your new gynecologist…or dentist…

  1. Do your homework.

You’re often sent “sides,” select pages from a script or screenplay, before the audition. (I’ll leave monolog auditions out of this, as I haven’t done them often and apparently don’t excel at them either.) Read the sides. Familiarize yourself with the director’s work, and vision for the play or film, as much as possible ahead of time. Put yourself in the character’s shoes and feel what the character would feel. Read the lines aloud with emotion.

  1. But don’t over-prepare.

Once you’re cast in a show, there’s no such thing as too much preparation. You have lines to learn, rehearsals to attend, and will be doing the same scenes over and over until the right balance is achieved. Repetition is your friend, as long as you stay fully present, creative, and open to new ideas throughout the process.

When it comes to auditions, however, trying to nail down exactly how you’re going to “do it” ahead of time will kill your creativity and spontaneity. You’re already nervous. You don’t want to be a perfectly prepared cardboard caricature; you want to be a receptive and generous human being, sharing the emotions running through your body.

  1. Remember to breathe. Deep belly breathing calms everything, including performance anxiety. Here’s a reminder of how to properly breathe, from my 10-minute mini-voice lesson. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjUERjaRIv8&feature=youtu.be.

I also recommend Josh Pais’ Committed Impulse program: http://committedimpulse.com/. It’s from Josh I learned the four key reminders: BREATHE, SEE WHAT IS IN FRONT OF YOU, FEEL THE SENSATIONS IN YOUR BODY, YOU’RE BACK. His process is brilliant.

  1. Do what scares you a little, and do it often. The only way of getting over the fear of auditions is to audition. And I know from personal experience it doesn’t work if you only audition once a year.

Honoring your inner actor really means honoring the full expression of your inner authentic self and voice in the world.

PS: I just found out I, again, didn’t get the part. This time I called the director and asked why. He said while I’d read well, and he appreciated how my tears came at the end and everything…only one of the six actresses he’d read jumped right off the page and into the character, exactly as he’d written it, with the right vibe.

To me, this means it wasn’t the right part for me either. Mia, in La La Land, ended up writing a one-woman show. Even though it seemed like a disaster at first, that show lead her to her true purpose.

How can you do that this week? Let us know on the blog!

If you found this post helpful, please spread the love and pass it along to a friend!

If the idea of speaking in public about your business or non-profit leaves you wanting to crawl under the covers and hide all day, e-mail me at laurahanj@comcast.net to learn more about Authentic Performance for Speakers: Speaking with Impact! Speak about your passion with passion and inspire people to work with you.

Authentically Yours, Laura

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Being on TV is Fun!

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Being on TV is Fun!

Being on TV is Fun

Four of us were seated around the table. The tablecloth was a warm, rosy, light beige; the lovely floral centerpiece complimentary. We had matching elegant cups filled with fresh, filtered water. The lights were on, the cameras ready at different angles, and we were snaking microphone cords up our shirts. Feet were wiggling, people were trying to deep breathe, nerves were palpable.

Where in this process did I say, “I love being on television; being interviewed on TV is fun!”?

Somewhere towards the beginning.

Because it is.

Once you’ve done it a time or two. Or maybe even from the very beginning!

It’s not like I’m an “old pro.” There was the time on Tapestry with the M/6 group. Then with the Wishweavers documentary. On Margi Lantos’ Your Soul Awareness. And…I played a Chicken Whisperer for the City of Beaverton once. That was a hoot. Or shall I say a cluck?

At any rate…maybe I was an “old pro” compared to the other guests – at least enough to know it was fun.

Okay, we had a couple false starts. There were a few flubs.

Oh, well!

Not to worry…

You shouldn’t…not when you’re branching out to be your authentic self in front of a camera or anywhere else.

Editing can take care of a few flubs.

The first timers thought it was great fun after it was over!

And, so it was.

What’s uber important is embracing your inner voice (dreams, desires, passions, goals, purpose) and expressing it outwardly, through your physical voice. After all…you’re the only one who can.

If the idea of speaking in public about your business or non-profit leaves you wanting to crawl under the covers and hide all day, e-mail me at laurahanj@comcast.net to learn more about Authentic Performance for Speakers: Speaking with Impact! Speak about your passion with passion and inspire people to work with you.

Authentically Yours, Laura

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Create Sacred Space

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Create Sacred Space

Create Sacred Space

You must have a room or a certain hour of the day where you do not know what was in the morning paper…you do not know what you owe anybody, or what they owe you – but a place where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are, and what you might be… At first you may find that nothing’s happening…but if you have a sacred place and use it, take advantage of it, something will happen. –Joseph Campbell

Creating a quiet place and time to hear your inner voice is imperative on the authentic expression journey.

Growing up on a farm in South Dakota, I didn’t realize I was taking advantage of the natural sacred space in God’s country every time I got on horseback to ride through the fields, or ran through the hills with Lucy the dog. And I did both a lot.

I’ve always been a walker – walking outside in nature is the best way I know of to connect with my inner voice and sustain a sense of peace. But it wasn’t until I was married with a ready-made family, including three step-sons, that I realized the importance of creating my own personal sacred space within my own home. Now, (I’ve been divorced since 2006 and have shared a home with my partner, George, since 2014) when I move, I automatically count and check the bedrooms to make sure there is one which will be completely mine, wherein I can dedicate daily time with my inner spirit.

I encourage you to do the same.

This is not a selfish act; it’s a generous one. When you are at your best and connected to your authentic self, you have more light and energy to share with those you love, or even those you don’t!

In my current home with George, my inspiration room doubles as my home office. It works out great, as my space is respected here (which wasn’t always the case in past homes.) One of the first things I did after we moved here was to create an altar on one shelf of a bookcase in my inspiration room.

That is how simple your sacred space can be – it can be one shelf, a tiny table, the top of a dresser, or a specified place in the back yard where you park a camp chair and listen to the birds and watch the squirrels.

Wherever and whatever works best for you, find your own sacred space and visit it regularly, daily. Things will start to shift for you. You’ll be amazed.

Where do you go for your private sacred space? Or where can you create such a space? Let us know on the blog to benefit everyone.

Certain springs are tapped only when we are alone. –Anne Morrow Lindbergh

If the idea of speaking in public about your business or non-profit leaves you wanting to crawl under the covers and hide all day, e-mail me at laurahanj@comcast.net to learn more about Authentic Performance for Speakers: Speaking with Impact! Speak about your passion with passion and inspire people to work with you.

Authentically Yours, Laura

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. I Need a Vacation! (Do You?)

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. I Need a Vacation! (Do You?)

I Need a Vacation! (Do You?)

Sometimes when I’m due for a vacation and when my time and budget allow for one are two separate things. Sound familiar?

What to do in the middle of this conundrum? Make a mini-vacation a priority, even if it’s just a half a day! I’m telling you, it works. Just one play day can turn your perspective completely around. It did mine recently.

I had mentioned to my master mind group, Success Weavers Circle, just that morning that I was badly in need of a vacation. I had an 11:00 coffee meeting in Sellwood after our circle meeting ended. The sun came out in all its glory while I was driving towards Sellwood and the world started to sparkle. My instincts told me not to go back to work after the coffee meeting. So, I didn’t! The items on my calendar for Friday afternoon were okay to transfer to Monday.

I love Sellwood. People put water bowls for dogs out in front of the stores in Sellwood. It’s riddled with antique shops and out-of-the-ordinary stores. It smells old and interesting. The trees are mature. Every house, many of them historic, is different – not a block of all the same by the same builder to be found anywhere in the neighborhood. If you have a traditional job, you may need to plan your play day or afternoon a day or week in advance. If you need a vacation, I encourage you to put your play day on your calendar right now!

Here are some photos from my play date in Sellwood to inspire you.

Where will you go on your play date? What will you do? Or not do? Let us know on the blog.

If you found this post helpful, please spread the love and pass it along to a friend!

If the idea of speaking in public about your business or non-profit leaves you wanting to crawl under the covers and hide all day, e-mail me at laurahanj@comcast.net to learn more about Authentic Performance for Speakers: Speaking with Impact! Speak about your passion with passion and inspire people to work with you.

Authentically Yours, Laura

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Get into the Right Brain: Four Simple Steps to Amp Up Your Creativity

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Get into the Right Brain: Four Simple Steps to Amp Up Your Creativity

Get into the Right Brain: Four Simple Steps to Amp Up Your Creativity

Spring is upon us here in Portland, Oregon, and I don’t think I’ve ever been more happy to see sunshine, green grass, and blooms and blossoms. This last winter was a long one.

It’s time to get out of the rut and into the light not just physically, but mentally. Let’s create some fresh thought patterns this spring.

Here are four ways to do just that.

1. Put yourself first. Get plenty of rest and don’t overextend yourself. You can’t get in touch with fresh, new creative thoughts and ideas when all you’re doing is running from one commitment to the next. That’s treading water, not steering your own ship.

2. Release pent up energy in your body. Yoga is the best way I know of to keep energy from stagnating in the body. I wish I had the time for a daily hour long (beginner’s) yoga class. Since that’s not in the cards right now, I spend two or three 20 minute segments each week with my Gaiam http://www.gaiam.com/ Rodney Yee DVDs. My body is so happy afterwards, and I feel better mentally and emotionally, too. I’m also a big walker/hiker. Whatever does it for you, move your body as often as you can to keep the energy flowing.

3. Pay attention to your dreams. I’ve heard many accounts of writers, composers and the like who received near complete creations at night while they were sleeping. They immediately got up and jotted down as much as they could remember of the masterpieces that appeared during dream time. I’ve had experiences like this myself, and you probably have, too. Act on them. Even if it’s just for fun, play around with the ideas. I’ve been sketching clothing since I was in junior high school. This particular dress idea came to me in a dream a few months ago.

I’m planning to work with a seamstress to have it made into a garment I can wear. I don’t usually receive images of the jewelry to go with it, but I did this time! Fun!

4. Get into your right, creative brain by doing something new or different. Since I don’t normally sketch, drawing and designing clothing gets me into my right brain. Here are more tips on how to get your left and right brains working together. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D5kzAP2en7A.

How can you get out of the rut and be more creative this coming week? Let us know on the blog!

If you found this post helpful, please spread the love and pass it along to a friend!

If the idea of speaking in public about your business leaves you wanting to crawl under the covers and hide all day, e-mail me at laurahanj@comcast.net to learn more about Authentic Performance for Speakers, Managers and Entrepreneurs. This is a short, mightily focused and affordable program to get you speaking in a way that will have your clients knocking down the door to work with you.

Authentically Yours, Laura

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Tap into Your Support System to Realize Your Dreams and Goals

Simply Authentic…Your Soul Voice is Calling. Tap into Your Support System to Realize Your Dreams and Goals

Tap into Your Support System to Realize Your Dreams and Goals

Earlier this week I helped a colleague facilitate her very first mastermind “Wishweavers Circle” experience. Six of the seven women had never been in such a group before, and most had never even heard of the concept. So, this was a special treat for me.

It never ceases to amaze me how just the “right” people show up in these meetings, like magic. Just one example from this group…one woman, a filmmaker, was nearly done with her business plan and her next step is to apply for grants. Another woman, whom the filmmaker had never seen before that evening, comes from a non-profit background, knows several grant writers, and has extensive knowledge of the grant application process.

People who want to lose weight have organizations like Weight Watchers. People who want to quit drinking have AA. But “dreamers who do” don’t have an organization like that. That’s why it so important to create your own support system, if you don’t already have one in place.

The dreams don’t have to be huge…like starting a new business, changing careers, running for President, traveling to Mars, or meeting your life partner (which, I’ve heard, can be more challenging than space travel or political campaigns.) They can be simple, like having more fun. Taking that trip to visit your cousin in New Mexico you’ve been talking about for ten years.

I don’t have any statistics to back this up, but I’ll say you’re at least 75% more likely to accomplish your dreams and goals if you share them with a support circle you meet with regularly and are accountable to. Having an ongoing Wishweavers Circle has helped me to the point I consider it indispensable.

Start your group this week, if you don’t already have one. And let me know if you need help facilitating the first meeting, to get you off and running on all the “right” feet.

Have you had an extraordinary mastermind experience through a group like this? Tell us on the blog!

If the idea of speaking in public about your business leaves you wanting to crawl under the covers and hide all day, e-mail me at laurahanj@comcast.net to learn more about Authentic Performance for Speakers, Managers and Entrepreneurs. This is a short, mightily focused and affordable program to get you speaking in a way that will have your clients knocking down the door to work with you.

If you found this post helpful, please spread the love and pass it along to a friend!

Authentically Yours, Laura