It’s started already. That feeling of being torn between embracing the best of the holidays and wishing they were over so you can get on with maintaining the momentum in your career that’s taken you all year to develop.
Rest assured, there’s plenty you can do to keep the ball in play to further your career during the holidays. Here are a few options.
1. Promote yourself.
It’s one of the best-kept secrets in the industry, but this is one of the best times of year to score new representation. Talent agencies aren’t quite as busy with auditions between Thanksgiving and New Year’s as they are the rest of the year. Which is why, traditionally, agents reassess their talent roster right about now by rotating out talent that may not have added to the agency’s reputation in the past year or so. Agents often take this time of year to consider new blood for the coming year and update their talent roster. It’ll be too chaotic to do so when they’re up to their necks in work in the coming months.
2. Be accessible.
Sometimes your greatest asset is your availability, regardless of what time of year it may be. Nevertheless, this may be your chance to act on opportunities others will miss out on. It happens every year about this time when a good portion of the hordes of talent who are typically available during the year have booked out to head to Gramma’s house for cookies and eggnog. The decrease in the number of those auditioning increases your odds of landing jobs—provided of course you act quickly and responsibly on those opportunities. Many enduring industry relationships have been built on last-minute “saves” during the holiday season. How better to demonstrate you’re reliable, talented, and a problem solver?
3. Prepare to deliver.
They say it takes two weeks to create a habit. Let’s face it, it’s probably been more than a year since you took a class, had any private coaching, or dedicated your time and attention to building and maintaining your skills. Now’s your chance to commit no less than 5–7 hours a week to creating a few good habits that will strengthen your confidence and move forward your career in the coming year. It’s never been more affordable to do so considering the wide variety of online coaching options to keep your head in the game, even if you find yourself traveling with time to burn between here and there.
You can take a few good webinars for example. There are loads of affordable, informative, career-changing webinars and online coaching options that will scratch the itch to develop and advance your skills. Also, try to watch no less than 6–8 consecutive episodes of a popular series that everyone’s seen except you. This is your homework. Observe who is in the series, the tempo of the show, the meter of speech, characters, and chemistry. Audition specs are packed with pop culture references based on popular movies and TV shows you should know well. You can’t play what you don’t know.
4. Start or start over now.
Waiting to create, update, or otherwise clean up your various promotional materials for the new year in the coming year is often too little, too late. Commit a couple of hours a week during the holidays toward establishing or improving your headshots, résumé, on-camera reels, voiceover demos, self-taping or self-recording ability. Prepping your promotional materials to elevate your branding is essential to whether you’ll successfully define and market yourself in the coming year.
5. Make time to recharge.
Be sure to carve out some quality time for yourself this holiday season. Connect with family and friends, and take stock of the past year. We’re expected to be prepared to deliver our best 24/7 as professionals, however, no one of any worth expects you to be available 24/7. Choose your battles wisely. Sometimes that means choosing to make yourself scarce from your standard frantic pace to truly unplug and recharge. Allocate time to relax. Stop and appreciate what you’ve accomplished thus far. Determine what needs attention in your life and career, where you could do better, and what you’d change or strengthen. Focus on who and what you intend to be, do, and have in your life.
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and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Backstage or its staff.