Getting My Mojo Back on the Stage!
I’m an actor. A community theater actor that is, and in Whitefish, Montana that is no small feat. We have a deep bench of talented female actors. We have professional theater company and a community theater.
I have played the female lead in three different productions: The Nerd, Private Eyes and Looking. I have played a maid in two more, Madam Curie in another, and finally, nurse Kelly in Harvey.
I LOVE being a part of a theater production. It makes me feel my alive, juicy and connected –
my heart sings! You actors out there know the feeling.
For the last two years, I’ve auditioned for a variety of roles, but haven’t gotten a part. It wasn’t too big of a deal because I’ve been focused on building our business.
Not a big deal that is, until a play came along that I thought I was perfect for. I mean this character has my story: A daughter who could never get her father’s approval, who never felt good enough in her father’s eyes. It was my story. It was my part. I even had a good audition.
I didn’t get the part. It hit me hard. I was crushed, hurt and broken-hearted. I texted my friend who got the part and wrote, “I want to congratulate you but I’m still grumpy from not getting it.” It was hard to be mad at her because she’s my friend, a skilled actor, and a director who has cast me in starring roles more than once.
She texted back, “Feel your feelings and when you’re ready, we’re going to talk.” It took me a few days process through my hurt and disappointment. When we finally connected, first she soaked me in love. She told me how super-talented, authentic, and filled with light and goodness she thinks I am, not only on stage, but in everything I do.
Message received: Who I am is more important than what I accomplish, and who I am is talented, authentic, and filled with light and goodness. I let it in.
Then she asked, “When you get up, what’s your focus every day?” Without a beat I said, “Building my business.” She said, “Right. Mine is being a better actor. It’s a job to me. How long have you been acting? And how many plays have you been in?” I replied, “Almost eight years, and seven plays.”
She replied, “You know I’ve been doing this for decades right? I’ve run a children’s theater, worked in LA, went on tour. In these same eight years I’ve probably only been in about two or three more plays than you.”
Message received: Don’t expect to be good at something when you’re not all in. Even if you’re talented, you are NOT entitled. You have got to put in 10,000 hours to expect consistent results (according to Malcom Gladwell.) I’m actually doing pretty damn good!
Then she went on to say, “You’ve got to think about this a different way. This business is hard. It’s filled with much more rejection than yeses. Girl, you’ve got to toughen up. The only way to do that is to do this a whole lot more. You have got to audition for everything even if it’s not the right age or you don’t like the play. You’ve got to get involved behind stage when you’re not on stage. You’ve got to watch and learn from other people.”
Message received: Do not back away. Do not give up. No. Lean in. Do more. Keep learning, not just about being a better actor, but about the entire process.
This is true in business, too.
My daily focus is building our business. I’ve spent over 20 years working with leaders and teams, coaching executives and professional women. Together Susan Clarke and I work with leaders and their teams to help them make their teams’ great by learning to use their differences to achieve innovative strategic outcomes.
As for my coaching, I coach women who are terrified of conflict and feel trapped by their lack of ability to speak up in tense situations or tough conversations both at work and at home.
I’ve been doing what I’m doing for decades. As they say, “I’ve got game!” But what I haven’t spent 10,000 hours doing is marketing myself. So yes, I’ve got talent, but it doesn’t matter if I don’t put it out there. Show up to the audition. Make the calls. Meet the people. Say what I do - over and over and over again.
What is it for you that you’re struggling with, feeling not good enough about, think you’re failing at?
Who you are is more important than what you accomplish. Ask someone to remind you of your talents, gifts, and soak you in love.
Are you expecting too much? Even if you’re naturally talented, EVERYONE has to put in 10,000 hours to get good at something. Really.
Do not give up! No. Lean in. Do more. What else can you learn?
Also, ask for help! I did. Ask your friends, your honey or hire a coach.
Let me tell you how the acting story turned out. I put on my big girl pants, and I went to the very next audition. It was for the play Love Song, being done as a Black Curtain, which is a not a full-scale production, but staged reading. It’s a beautiful play about a person coming alive in their life.
The first night of auditions was intimidating because there were talented women auditioning. I thought my performance sucked. I came home and cried to Susan. She said, “Go back tomorrow and say you didn’t have a great audition and want to practice more.” I wiped my tears and thought that’s a really good idea.
The next night I auditioned again. Since we don’t have many male actors, I volunteered to read all parts, both male and female, to support the other auditioning actors. I came home feeling alive, connected and juicy!
Three days later, and still feeling good — I got the part! BAM! Two-year dry-spell, BROKEN!
More importantly than getting the part though, through this process, (Thanks Kim), I got my Mojo back.
Love Song is a beautiful heart-warming play about a character coming to life, a bit like I did through this process. In the play I get to be the catalyst for him much like my friend was for me.
Let me be the catalyst for you in your life!
CrisMarie Campbell and Susan Clarke are Master certified life coaches, business consultants, speakers and authors of The Beauty of Conflict. They believe real relationships are the key to creating great business results. They’ll take your team from mediocre to great.
Interested in coaching? Check out CrisMarie’s executive coaching and personal coaching, or Susan’s personal coaching and equus coaching.
Want to take a class? Sign up for one of their virtual classes: Get Unstuck, Relationship Mojo or come to their signature retreat Find Your Mojo in Montana. Click here to check out all their service offerings.
Click here to contact them to coach with you, consult with your team, or speak at your next event.