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Career: Frustrated? Jolt Your



By Don E. Smith

If your goal is a career as a performing artist, you must ask yourself some hard questions. Questions like:
  • Will I always get the chance to audition?
  • Will I get every part I audition for?
  • Will the part always go to the best talent?
  • Will people think I’m crazy to try making a living this way?
You’re more likely to answer “no” to these questions than “yes.”

But make no mistake about it: voice-over work is a performing art. So on the road to building your career there will always be tough auditions, lots of rejections, and a few parts landed. Your success will come, to a greater extent, as the result of your ability to strike a balance between persistence and frustration.

To maximize persistence and combat frustration, I suggest employing something I call the AHH-WARENESS EFFECT.
I don't often take issue with the English language. But there are times when I think the spelling of certain a word doesn't accurately reflect its true meaning. Take the word AWARE.
If we break the word AWARE into two parts - "A" and "WARE" - we get a definition that results in either, "An article for sale" or "An item of fired clay." Of course, this is neither the intent nor the generally accepted understanding of the word AWARE.
AWARE means "to have a realization or consciousness" of something. In other words, becoming aware of something is that precise moment when the light bulb that hovers above your head suddenly blinks "on" and your brain produces a substance that triggers a response in your central nervous system, causing you to involuntarily utter the sound "AHH!"  
In earlier times, dating back to the days of Archimedes, humans actually had enough chemistry within them to produce the word "eureka" - ancient-talk for "I've got it!"
Today, as a performer, much of your focus will be on GETTING IT! In fact, most of life is about GETTING IT … Getting it done, getting it over, getting it right, getting it wrong, getting it together, and so on.
The challenge is figuring out what IT is, so that by the time we GET IT, IT isn't what we either thought it would be, nor what we were really after in the first place.

Sometimes the only thing we GET is FRUSTRATED!

Frustration is one of the easiest seeds to take root. It needs very little water or sunlight, and, in fact, succeeds best when the subject is "left high and dry and kept in the dark."
If you feel frustrated on the way to success, you may need to develop a sense of AHH-WARENESS. Find a way to send a jolt of juice to your light bulb to produce that "AHH!" 
  • If you don’t get the audition, ask why. 
  • If you don’t land the part, find out why.
  • If you think you’re better than the person they hired, ask yourself what they had that you didn’t, and then go out and get it.
The best way I know to prevent frustration from taking root is to create an AHH-WARENSS of reasonable expectation of your goals and dreams:

Reasonable Expectations + Understanding of Capability =

For instance, your expectations may be too high if you make an assumption of your abilities without evidence of those abilities, or if you lack a desire to achieve your expected level of performance.
To resolve this quandary, you have several alternatives:
1. readjust your expectations, either up or down.
2.  allow alternative solutions to your expectations.
3. define your expectations in detail before you start.

The surest way to achieve AHH-WARENESS is to specifically determine expectations you understand. And when you achieve this,  it can become an action plan to see that you really do "GET IT."  


Don E. Smith is the founder and chief strategist of Encore Business Performance LLC.  A personal and executive development coach, Don is a former writer-producer-director, and has taught communications and marketing. Through his coaching, he provides business, marketing communications and coaching with perspectives and strategies to assist individuals and enterprises that want to develop a “Performing Success” attitude. Encore Business Performance’s goal is to help its clients “Build stronger relationships one performance at a time.”  

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