Grow Up, Trump
One day until the election. One. Long. Day. Like most of the world, I have been asking a very crucial question: ARE WE BEING PUNKED? A key ingredient in becoming an adult is taking responsibility – responsibility for your thoughts, words, and actions, and unfortunately, some politicians still struggle with this. I want to be careful, here. This blog is not and has never been political, at least not in the pejorative sense. So let’s shift our focus from politics and onto character, specifically regarding Donald Trump’s lack of responsibility. When asked if he will accept the results of the election, the Republican presidential candidate said, “I’ll accept the results of this election [pause] if I win.”
This is a prime example of the lack of responsibility Donald Trump has shown during this election. So if this mentality is acceptable, what else is acceptable?
- I will accept the speeding ticket if I don’t have to pay it.
- I will accept the paternity results if I am NOT the father.
- I will accept the forecast if it’s not raining.
I feel gross. These are all gross examples. Is there something we can learn from this? Any chance we can take responsibility and recognize this immature complex in our own lives, particularly as actors? Let’s see . . .
I’m assuming most people show more maturity than those in the preceding examples, but take a moment to look at any situations that don’t rest well with you, either at the present moment or in the past. Here are a few examples from my own past:
- Why hasn’t my agent gotten me an audition lately?
- Why did ______ get a speaking role on ______ and not me?
- How come that one casting director doesn’t call me in anymore?
All equally gross. So let’s un-gross ourselves and grow up a little, shall we? First, honor your thoughts. As Dr. Shirley Impellizzeri and Steve Rohr in Scared Speechless call it, “Name it to Tame It.” Does this sound familiar? If you’ve read my blog before, you’re probably seeing a trend.
Your thoughts are right because you are having them.
Impellizzeri and Rohr explain it like this:
Feelings are fluid and they come and go. The key is to stop fighting the anxiety and actually notice the sensations in your body and name them . . . By actually naming what you are feeling, you might notice that the sensations will calm, even if just a little . . . As your body calms, it signals the brain that you are not in danger, thus signaling the brain to stop releasing stress hormones to prep the body for fight, flight, or freeze.
So let’s make a connection. You’re having gross thoughts of jealousy, or you’re feeling the urge to blame your agent for not “getting” you an audition. Fine. Feel that. Name that. Then, when you’re done, move on.
Having a hard time moving on? Here’s where being an adult comes in. Take responsibility. Your agent isn’t “getting” you that audition? Well, have you done everything in your power, or have you just jumped to a comfortable conclusion that distracts you from feeling dark feelings (“I’m not right for the part . . . I’m not good enough . . . I’m not ready.”) You see, this is the hard part. It’s easy to blame someone else. It’s much more difficult to see where the real rub lies. (Maybe, Donald, the election isn’t rigged. Maybe, Donald, America just doesn’t want you as their leader.)
Have you taken responsibility? Are you uncovering some truths about yourself that were hidden in the gross irresponsible lies you’ve put on yourself? Sucks, doesn’t it? Fine. Let it suck. Feel those feelings, too.
And finally, DON’T BE A TRUMP. BE A DOER.
When you’re done blaming others, DO SOMETHING. In this instance with your agent, here are some options:
- Communicate with your agent.
- Take a class.
- Read a book.
- Submit yourself for roles available to you and build up your resume / reel.
- Do research. Are others in your agent’s roster that have your type being called in for roles that are right for you? Why do you think that is? (Stop. Be an adult. Resume . . . ) Is it because they’re more trained? Been with the agent longer? More prepared? Etc. Etc. Etc. Learn from these questions and possible answers.
- Communicate with your agent.
Sulking does nothing but keep you comfortably stuck.
And above all else, know that we are in this together, both in Hollywood as an actor and The United States as an American. As Bonnie Gillespie says, “Create the Hollywood you want to be a part of.” (Notice how she says “Create,” not “Think of.”) And to add to that, create the America you want to be a part of. I believe President Obama said it perfectly: “Don’t Boo. Vote.” Ok, so maybe this blog is a little political. I take responsibility for that.
But seriously, go vote.
On a completely hypocritical note, if you like this blog, tell all your friends and family I wrote it. If you don’t like it, I have no idea who the author is.
Care to welcome me to your inbox twice a month? Click on this link!