Ch01.Blog15 Time to make a change

Ch01.Blog15 Time to make a change

by Hilary Stevens

Trust yourself.

I know you hear this a lot. This little blog is for all the people starting out, and those looking back to the beginning.

I say this to myself everyday I’m feeling down: “Everyone is different but we are all the same, too. And success can mean many different things. Don’t feel put down by all the people doing amazing things around you, especially those splashing it around on social media.”

I try not to compare myself to anyone. Instead I take note of how other people approach things and make things happen. I try to enjoy everyday and be inspired by the people around me. I’d rather join them in their excitement rather than lusting after their life. The grass isn’t always greener, and everyone has his or her struggles.

I go to the seminars and the meets. I see the big stage shows and the small student productions. I watch and listen to a heap of things at home. It totally helps! It doesn’t matter whether you are making things and involved in a project, or not in anything right now – its all about staying in the right mind frame and remembering why you wanted to become an actor, or any kind of artist, in the first place.

Don’t just do nothing. I did that and I lost myself. I felt like an outsider. Alone. And it’s not nice.

As artists we will all feel this way at one time or another but it’s important to remember that we all go through it. And amongst all the crap, pressures and internal conflicts, as we strive to make a living out of creating and doing what we love, in the end if we stay true to our dreams it will be worth it.

I think I lost it because I didn’t have the comfort of school anymore. Whether it’s high school, acting school, university, whatever it may be, school is like a home for your creativity. It’s full of schedules, deadlines and pressure, but alongside like-minded people. It feels like the possibilities are endless for you because you believe that once it’s over you can “make it” in the real world.

But then I graduated. Suddenly there were no more routines, deadlines to meet, mentors or boundless sources of information and no one around to keep me plodding along my journey. I fell off the artistic rainbow and into bland, boring Grey Street.

I began to unravel. I failed to cope under pressure. I felt thick with the pressure to succeed and the nagging voice of negativity in my head that compared me to everyone ahead of me. I felt I had to prove myself but at the same time I lost all my confidence. My attitude became the opposite of how I had always felt about creating. I wanted to be contributing to society and having a positive impact on people around me but instead I just felt like I was wasting my time.

But then I decided it was time to make a change. Time to train my brain to think differently, run positively, and as corny as it sounds, to believe in myself again.

The trick is to take everyday at a time, plan only a week in advance and speak positively to myself and others. Keep busy, make things, see your friends and family and reach out positively to those who do support you, and really listen to them. I wouldn’t have made it this far without them.

I know it’s a bump, and I’ll have plenty more as my creative career continues, but I think I’ll be alright.

Yes, I know I’m only just starting off but I’m learning to trust myself again.

“You are you, this is truer than true, there is no one alive that is youer than you” –Dr Seuss

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