So you want to succeed in the entertainment business? Here are 10 of the most important tips you’ll need to live by in order to find the success you’re looking for:
1. Love What You Do.
The most important thing with any artistic pursuit is that you absolutely love it. It’s a hard road being an artist or a creator, but it’s also a very rewarding one if you’re in it for the right reasons. It’s important to ask yourself the question, “Is this something that I can live without?” If your answer is “no” then you know that you have to do it.
2. Be All In (Complete Commitment).
The people that choose to be actors, models or artists, have to be completely and utterly committed to it. The people that call themselves “part-time actors” are never going to be successful because they aren’t completely committed to it. Whether it’s fear of failure, or even a fear of admitting that they want to do this, holding yourself back and not putting it as the most important goal in your life is setting yourself up for failure. When you make the decision that you want to be an actor, that goal has to be the driving force in your life. If it isn’t, and it’s just slotted in as a “hobby”, then you don’t stand a chance of succeeding.
3. Always Be Working And Studying.
The simple truth is that those who are practicing are those who are working. The only time that you shouldn’t be studying and practicing is when you don’t have enough time because you’re working so much. No matter how talented, or experienced you are, there is always something for you to learn. The most successful actors understand the value of always staying a student. They understand that there will always be someone smarter than them, or more talented than them that they can learn from. A List, award winning actors such as Meryl Streep, Russell Crowe, Christian Bale, and Anne Hathaway and countless others continue to study with coaches and master the craft of acting, even to this day. Remaining humble and working hard at learning the craft and studying is a key force in driving home your success.
4. Patience And Persistence
Being an actor requires an enormous amount of patience. Whether it’s waiting for the next audition, or waiting for the cameras to start rolling, actors are always waiting. It’s the name of the game and has to be something that they can handle. At the opposite end is persistence. So many careers are sprouted from stories of perseverance and sticking it out when the rough times came. It’s essential that you’re in for your career for the long haul and won’t jump ship when you can’t afford to pay your hydro bill or your sleeping on a friends couch, as well as have the endurance to continue to pound away on your craft even when the breaks aren’t coming your way.
5. Create Your Own Opportunities.
In order to get lucky, you have to work extremely hard and show initiative by creating your own opportunities. So in other words, don’t be lazy. Be proactive and create your own projects. This keeps your skills in top shape, as well as creates products that could be launching platforms for your talents. This also helps your Talent Agent to better market you for even bigger opportunities. Whether it’s to market yourself as an actor, writer, or filmmaker, creating your own projects sows initiative, and is how a lot of people get discovered. Remember Goodwill Hunting? Matt Damon started writing that script in a playwriting class at Harvard in his fifth year. Then with the blessing of his teacher, Damon dropped out of school and moved to LA to finish the script with his good buddy Ben Affleck. That movie launched both those actor’s careers into the stratosphere. If it wasn’t for them taking it upon themselves to create their own movie (vehicle) to market their acting talents, then the names Matt Damon and Ben Affleck might mean absolutely nothing to us now. Or how about Garden State? Zach Braff wrote and directed that little movie, which turned him into a household name overnight. The best example is probably HBO “Girls” creator, Lena Dunham, who quickly became the “talent of the moment” by continuously creating her own projects that showcased her writing, directing, and acting talents. She even created the show Girls, based loosely off her own life in New York. This just shows how important it is to create your own things. You can’t catch your breaks and get lucky without working hard and going after what you want with passion, initiative and good work ethic.
6. Find A Mentor.
A lot of very successful people (in and out of the entertainment industry) will tell you that it’s impossible to be successful without a mentor. That’s because a mentor helps you to steer the ship. They help to cut years off your road to success by making sure you’re doing the necessary things in the present to help you get to your end goal. Talent Agent, Anne Marie Perrault says “Finding a mentor is absolutely essential and can be a major a factor in ones career success. It is important to seek out professionals in the field as they are a wonderful source of career advice. The best ways to find one would be to find someone in the industry that you admire, whether it’s someone you meet on set, or a teacher who you really respect, in some cases it can even be your Agent or Manager”. Don’t be shy to ask someone if they’d be interested in mentoring you as well. They will take it as a compliment. You can meet regularly to talk about your career, or you can even just keep in touch through email or on Skype to ask questions, and check-in every now and again. Your mentor will be essential in helping you to answer those difficult questions, help lift you up when times are tough, and ultimately, help you strive to becoming a better performer and person.
7. Take Full Responsibility For Everything That Happens To Tou.
The first step to happiness and success is taking full responsibility for where you are in your life. The moment you stop pointing the blame on other people, or things, is the moment that you finally point yourself in the direction of success. So you didn’t get that audition? The director did not think you where right for it or had someone else in mind. You didn’t book the role? It’s nobody’s fault but your own for not delivering the way you needed to or maybe you just are not ready, or are having a bad day. Leave it at the door. Don’t beat yourself up for it. Use any shortcomings and failures as an opportunity to look at yourself in the mirror and figure out how you can be better. Learn from each experience. Your career and your life is completely up to you, you’re the one in control of your fate, so make sure you step up to the plate. The happiest and most successful people in life are those who feel they have complete control over their lives. This starts with accepting complete responsibility for where you are and understanding that you’re the one in control of your success or failure.
8. Set Goals
So you want to be the next big leading man or woman, do you? Yes that’s a lofty goal, but can you do it? You better believe you can! It’s definitely a big dream, so how do you make it seem more manageable, or achievable? You break your dream down into something smaller; you break it down into parts called goals. Then you break down the steps that you will need to complete (accomplish) in order to reach those specific individual goals. Once you do this, your wildest dreams will seem a little more in reach. You have to have a plan; you have to create a vision for your career. You do this by creating goals on paper, then continuously visualizing yourself successfully moving towards those goals. When Jim Carrey was a broke, struggling comic, he would drive up to Mulholland Drive a few nights a week and visualize himself making it big in Hollywood. He even wrote a check to himself for 10 million dollars and filled it out as “acting services rendered”. It was only a number of years later when he became one of the biggest stars on the planet; booking roles for the exact amount of money he said he would, 10 million dollars. Believe you can, believe you will, create a vision, put it down on paper!
9. Take Risks
Those that take risks get noticed. Most people will say that choosing to become an actor is a big risk in the first place. They may be right. Actors have to take risks on a regular basis. It’s part of what being an artist and a performer is all about! When you choose to pursue your passion as a profession, you have to face fear and walk down a road that offers very little security. This is the all-important first risk that you’re going to have to take. You then have to continue walking down that road fearlessly. You have to believe in the process, believe that the journey you are on will take you to where you want to go. You will also have to task risks regularly with new roles and parts that come your way. You’re going to need to venture out of your comfort zone and try new things, do roles that scare you and really go for it with complete disregard for failure. They say that success is a sum of thousands of failures, and they’re right. Failure is success’ most important pre-requisite, which is even truer when it comes to the performing arts. Take risks, overcome fear, and you will grow closer to success!
10. Be Confident And Believe In Yourself.
On your “Road to Success” you’re going to have to make a lot of big decisions. In order to do this, you’re going to have to be strong and be true to yourself. If you continue to do that, you will make decisions that are the most agreeable to who you are as a person and you will stay on the right path. You have to be confident in yourself and make sure you treat yourself the right way. On your path to success, a lot of people will tell you that you’re crazy and you won’t ever reach the big dreams you’ve set for yourself. You have to silence those voices, look inside and believe in that vision you have for yourself. Not everybody is going to see what you see, so you have to understand that and not dwell on the opinions and perceptions of others. Confidence and success is made by marching toward your goals and dreams with massive action, even in the face of adversity and fear of failure. This is an absolute must in achieving big success!
It’s a comforting feeling knowing that your success is completely up to you. You’re the one in control of the universe you create for yourself. Understanding and believing in this is definitely the starting point for every big dream or goal. Start living by this philosophy and your success will start to grow exponentially.
Now go out there and build the life you’ve always dreamed of!