There is only one reason why anyone should be an actor: if it is one of the great loves of your life. Actors are passionate about their craft, and in order to make that craft a career, an actor must work with a focused drive that few professions require. With these two components combined, it can be really hard to think of anything but your acting career. We often feel that no matter how much we work on our craft, it is never enough.
Here are a few reasons why your acting career just might benefit from a breather.
1. Gain and improve special skills. There is a good reason why every one of your online profiles requires you to fill in all of your “special skills.” Casting is always looking for performers with specific abilities. Having unique skills is a great way to set yourself apart from the crowd and get an opportunity to work with a production team who would have never met you if you hadn’t had the unique skill they needed. Whether it’s singing, dance, rock climbing or horseback riding, being able to put these special skills on your résumé gives you another opportunity to be called into the casting office.
2. Turn off to power up. Not even a robot can run all the time without a little downtime for maintenance. An actor is the same way. You need to turn your brain off and recharge the battery. Participate in some activities that ground you and stimulate you in ways that acting does not. With a little time to recharge, you’ll approach your craft with a fresh perspective.
3. Dig deeper. How can you portray life experiences if your only experience is that of an actor? By participating in other activities you will expand not only your experiences, but also the life experience of others. For example, the calm and concentration you find in yoga will surely help when a character requires you tap into a place of serenity. Those that you meet in new activities may have a completely different perspective on how to approach life than your current peers. Soaking up these takes on life will give you endless material to pull from when a character calls for it.
4. Take control. Acting can often be frustrating. In order for an actor to perform, we must be invited by others to collaborate on a project. Whether it be writing, drawing, or cooking, find something that you can perform on a whim and flex your creative muscles without asking permission from anyone.
No matter the activity, when we expand our lives beyond acting, we become richer, deeper, and stronger people. A person like that is sure to be a better actor!
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The views expressed in this article are solely that of the individual(s) providing them,
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Backstage or its staff.