coaching

Remember your why

Remember your why

If you read my blog post, “The power of being naive”,  several weeks back, then you know that I went to the University of Michigan and that I’m pretty much obsessed with it.  #goblue.

I wish the Wolverines had won the NCAA tournament, but I was still blown away by the way the team played.

It was freaking impressive by all accounts.  

But what I loved the most, was how the coach, John Beilein, responded to a reporter’s question after their loss for the title.  His words speak volumes about him as a coach and mentor for those young men. He said:

Dad's Life Lessons

Dad's Life Lessons

I stole this blog from my Dad.  

Kind of.

His “blog” was actually a hand-written letter he wrote to my brother who was about to start college as a pre-med student.

The anniversary of my dad’s death is on the 29th, and it's always comforting to read this letter. I love reading his words and “hearing” his voice, even though the letter wasn’t meant for me.  

The letter has multiple references toward being pre-med, of course, but I have added alternate ideas in brackets. But I’ve left most of it unchanged (including all of this underlined words!), because his points have remarkable relevance for just about anyone’s path in life, including as actors.

Be Curious (or...what would you ask for if you knew you'd get it?)

Be Curious (or...what would you ask for if you knew you'd get it?)

I was 8 when my brother was born.

I’m pretty sure I thought my parents had him because I’d asked them to.  And this *might* actually be true.

Every Christmas I asked for two things. A  miniature, real car (why??) and a Baby Alive doll.

I never got either.

How Barre Class Reset My Self-Talk

How Barre Class Reset My Self-Talk

I think we can all agree there’s not enough time in a day.

So in an effort to “add more time” to my own day, I decided to get up at an hour earlier, at 5:45,  to exercise. I know, I know, 5:45 a.m. is NOT that early...and especially since I spent 18 years getting up at 3:45am when I worked in the bond market. But, times change (no pun intended).

In the first few minutes of my 6:30 barre class, when I couldn’t sustain a plank for a full minute, I got frustrated and started berating myself for not being as strong as I should be or letting the early morning get to me.  My mind said, “You’re better than this.”

And then my heart said,  “Hey! I woke up at 5 freaking 45 to be here.  Isn’t that kinda awesome? And even if I only get 80% of the benefit, isn’t that better than not working out at all?

And slowly, my mindset shifted.  And while I still didn’t feel as strong as I normally do, I felt pretty dang proud of myself for being there at all.

The Power Of Being Naive

The Power Of Being Naive

One of the best gifts in my life happened because I was too naive to know that I was being naive.  

As I reflect back on it, it was part my expectation for others to do the right thing, a little about ‘you don’t get what you don’t ask for’ and even more about knowing I had nothing to lose.

This is definitely true for us actors who are fighting so hard for our dreams.

You can’t expect to make your dreams come true if you don’t go after them, right?  We all know that.  Our passion for acting is the fire that gets us out of bed every day to keep going for it, even though so many voices (sometimes even our own) are screaming, “no” and “it’s too hard”. 

Because regret is insidious.

And while I regret a lot of things in my life,  my biggest regrets are the things I didn’t do.

Luckily,  following my dreams to be an actor isn’t one of them.  And it isn’t for you, either. So high five, my friend.  We’re doing it!  
 

Demystifying the Aha Moment

Demystifying the Aha Moment

As most of you know, I’ve spent a lot of time blogging about the guts of my business, how I’m feeeeeeling about it all, and how crazy cool it is when an actor tells me they had a lot of “aha moments” while taking my course.  

You know who else talks a lot about her feelings?  Oprah.  And you wanna know who happens to be pretty freaking incredible actor? Yup, right again.  Oprah...wth two Oscar noms to prove it.  No surprises there. She’s pretty extraordinary.

So extraordinary, in fact, that she’s the reason “aha moment” is in the dictionary in the first place! She used it so much that the Merriam-Webster people decided that it was worthy of becoming an immortalized part of the English language.  #lifegoals

For what it’s worth, other recent additions to the dictionary are “jiggy”, “shizzle” the verb “MacGyver”, and the 2017 word of the year, youthquake.  Hmm.

But back to aha moments.  Today I’m hoping to give you one by showing you how to infuse yourself into any character you have to play.

The "Audition Hotline" And The Vortex of Self-Doubt

The "Audition Hotline" And The Vortex of Self-Doubt

The Sunday New York Times business section recently ran an article called, “Reese Witherspoon’s Second Act”.  

And it had me cheering.

Not only because she wants to create television for other woman – actresses, directors, and writers – but because Reese is absolutely killing it as a producer (cast in point, Meryl Streep signed on for Big Little Lies, Season 2. Are you kidding me???)  which means she's figured out a way to take back control in the industry. Go girl! 

How to Use Predictability in Your Favor. Every Time.

How to Use Predictability in Your Favor. Every Time.

My daughter recently turned 13.

And I know this will mean many, many changes in our house– terrifying changes that are sure to keep me up at night wondering what happened to my baby girl.   But, for now, there’s  one thing I know I can count on for sure – her birthday meal requests.

Her menu looks like this, every year:

How Getting Really Pissed Off Helped Me Find My Groove

How Getting Really Pissed Off Helped Me Find My Groove

She doesn’t know it (yet, because I just figured it out for myself)  but my mom is the inspiration behind the Magnetic Actor Method.

But not in the, “Hi, it’s me, your mom. I just called to say I have this great idea for a business you should start” kind of inspiration.

That’s not even close.  Here’s the backstory.

5 Ways To Supercharge Your Next Audition

5 Ways To Supercharge Your Next Audition

I totally rocked an audition last week.  

Everything went exactly as I had planned, and I knew I’d booked it.

As we all know, auditioning is scary.  As an actor, you’re putting yourself on the line in every audition, and most of the time, you hear crickets.  It’s easy to start getting in your head and questioning whether you’ve got what it takes.  

I’m a firm believer in leveraging one’s strengths in all facets of the business, and for me, that includes audition prep and the moment I walk into the casting room.  That’s what my Magnetic Actor Method is all about, and it has transformed the way I approach auditions.  Here’s what it might look like in the the audition room, and how it worked for me.

The Only Thing That Really Matters (P.S. It's Not Chocolate)

The Only Thing That Really Matters (P.S. It's Not Chocolate)

I know it’s December, but I’m still thinking about Thanksgiving. And it’s because of my brothers.

Yes, because I’m thankful for them, but there’s more to it.  It really comes down to that I don’t see them enough.  

We see each other every Thanksgiving which is pretty incredible for a family strewn across the country:  My mom is in Hawaii, I’m in California, one brother is in Michigan and the other brother is in New York.

But about 5 years ago we made it a priority to see each other every Thanksgiving, because life is short. And family is what matters.

Here’s what happened.