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Backstage Experts

Why You Shouldn't Assume Anything As an Actor

Why You Shouldn't Assume Anything As an Actor

When you assume you make an ass out of you and me.


Making assumptions is different from making choices.

Because assumptions aren’t based in fact.

But we love to make them because they pull us out of the present moment and send us speeding into a projected future that distracts us from now. We’re so familiar with letting our mind run rampant into the future that we spend an inordinate amount of time and energy there. And there’s a pay-off. (But more on that in a minute.)

Assumptions often get us into trouble because they generally stem from our fixed conditioned mind patterns that assume things incorrectly based on our paradigms of doubt, fear, and cynicism.

We assume things without having the breadth and scope of the whole picture. We get triggered and our minds run on autopilot and misinterpret events. So we rewrite history in our heads.

We don’t book the job or an agent rejects us. We assume we suck. We assume they didn’t like us. We assume we lack talent.

These are assumptions based on our inner paradigms that keep us locked into a closed-system. That system wants us to remain closed because if we had to give up assumptions, we might have to give up our conditioned beliefs about ourselves that we’ve been holding onto for a long, long time.

You know the ones. They suck. They don’t serve us. They make us feel like crap about ourselves. But we would rather (unconsciously) stay in that negative feedback loop than step into greater clarity and empowerment. Step into who we can become.

You mean there’s a part of us that would rather remain jaded? Cynical? Bitter? A complainer?


I know it’s hard to swallow but it’s true. Because if we had to give up those assumptive responses to events occurring in our lives it would mean we’d have to rewrite our story. And who wants to do that? It takes work.

We’d be held accountable in a new way. We’d have to step into our power. We’d have to show up in the world in a more conscious way. We’d have to take responsibility and rise to the level we really desire – but are often scared of – in our life and career.

But of course, the deeper part of you wants to do that. That’s why we’re all here on this planet.

But in order to embrace the unknown – you have to give up assumptions.

About yourself. Your life. The business. Success. People. Money. The way things “work.” Your past. Your future. Lots of things.

One of the easiest ways to get there is to begin questioning everything you tell yourself. Take a look at where your thoughts and beliefs come from. Discover that many of them are based on false assumptions about life.

What would happen if you could try this for a week?

Anthony Meindl is an award-winning writer, director, producer, and Artistic Director of Anthony Meindl's Actor Workshop (AMAW) in Los Angeles, where it was voted the Best Acting Studio in Los Angeles by Backstage in 2011 and 2012 (Best Scene Study and Best Cold Read). AMAW is also located in New York and Australia. 

Meindl's first feature film, “Birds of a Feather,” won the Spirit of the Festival Award at the 2012 Honolulu Rainbow Film Festival, and he won Best Director at the Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles. He is a regular contributor to The Daily Love, Backstage, and various spirituality podcasts. He has been featured in ABC News, Daily Variety, LA Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter and the CW KTLA. He is also the author of the new best-selling book, “At Left Brain Turn Right,” which helps artists of all kinds unleash their creative genius within. Check out Meindl's free smartphone app on iTunes. 'Follow Meindl on Twitter @AnthonyMeindl.

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