Sounds a little redundant, don’t you think?
I mean, if you don’t know what to do, then you don’t know what to do, right?
As an actor, I think it’s easy to feel that way a lot of the time… wondering what to do next. Hoping something will happen, but not really trusting that it will.
So I guess it is easy to feel like if you don’t know what to do, then you don’t know what to do.
But I think that way of thinking is the exact reason why you feel trapped or stuck or in wonderment.
I believe there is ALWAYS a way to the answer and that everything is FIGUREOUTABLE!
I love this word. It’s totally made up, but it is true, especially when you believe it is so. #figureoutable
So, what can you actually DO when you feel like you absolutely don’t know what to do next? Here are six possible actions or things to ask when you’ve really hit a wall:
1. Don’t ever settle for your first answer of “I don’t know.” All that answer means really is that you don’t know YET! So let’s play a little game with your brain. If you are currently struggling with something where you feel like you don’t know what to do, ask yourself that question again. But this time, add this statement to the front of the question: “If I DID know what to do, what might I do?” IF you really look at what that does, it actually makes your brain look for more answers. Don’t be afraid to ask your own brain to give you the answer. #askyourbrain
2. Get a completely outside perspective. Sometimes it’s tough to ask civilians — you know, people who AREN’T in showbiz — for advice. But sometimes getting an outside perspective can open up doors and ideas you would have never thought of. Do you have a friend who is a business owner or an accountant or a marketing guru? See what they might offer up. Be sure to put on your patience cap first because they might say some things that won’t make sense at all because they don’t know this business. But their perspective can be golden. #askacivilian
3. Make totally new choices. If what you are doing is absolutely not working, DO NOT DO IT ANYMORE. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Don’t do that. If none of your audition songs are getting you callbacks, change them up. If you’re not enjoying the monologues you’re doing, get new ones. #changeitup
4. Hire a coach. That could be me or someone else you know who is trained to help you find your path. A coach is there to be your cheerleader, your guide and someone to call you out on your B.S. And you’re paying them to do that, so sometimes it’s easier to hear it from them than a friend. If you are ready to make a financial investment in yourself, I’m happy to set up a free 30-minute session with you, but visit my site first to see if there’s something there that speaks to you. #creativecoaching
5. Let it marinate. Trying to get the answer right this minute and pushing it to be answered will rarely get you the answer. Sometimes you need to let things rest and marinate. Try on new ideas for a little while. Ask yourself questions like, “Let’s just suppose I decided to ___________.” Then “try on” what that might look like and feel like. Try on some different ideas and, from that, you might find the gold. And if you’re still struggling to know what to do, download my FREE GUIDE: 52 Ways To One Up Your Acting Career!
6. Have a brainstorming session. I can guarantee you that you have friends who might be feeling the same way. So why not have a group brainstorming session where you all help each other get some new ideas? A true brainstorming session is without judgement or second-guessing. ALL IDEAS WIN IN A BRAINSTORMING SESSION. So start there and see what happens. You might even find that you like having a group around you and you want to be in a mastermind group on a consistent basis.
Don’t be afraid of not knowing what to do next. I find that in those times of question, you will get the best answers you’ve ever found. Do you have any tricks you use when you don’t the answer to something? Comment below.
Leslie Becker is Broadway actress, Billboard artist and best-selling author of The Organized Actor®. Since 1994, her teachings have empowered thousands of actors to be strong individuals so the highs and lows of the industry are balanced by a strong belief in themselves. As an actress, she has appeared in 10 Broadway and National Tour productions and she has starred in over 50 regional shows. She is the host of the Facebook Group Organized Actor Alliance and offers free tips for actors at www.OrganizedActor.com.