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CAREER
Getting Your VOJO Back: How To Break
Through When Inertia (Or A Car) Hits
February 19, 2015

By Randye Kaye
Voice Actor & Coach

Hi, my name is Randye and I’ve lost my VOJO.
Note: If you haven’t had your caffeine yet this morning and can’t guess, I will define VOJO for you: Voice Over plus Mojo/motivation. Got it? Now go to Starbucks, already. 
We all need VOJO, and we need to reignite it now and again – or daily.

VOJO is not about the easy stuff: meeting the client’s deadline, getting the work done, depositing the checks. VOJO is about the tasks with less-immediate deadlines and results, such as:
  • planting the marketing seeds,
  • making those cold calls,
  • creating a database,
  • submitting an audition,
  • sending those thank-you cards.
We need VOJO to keep our business fluid, active, and progressing. Problem is, for those of us who thrive on immediate return (umm, slight ADD, anyone?), it’s difficult to get motivated and too easy to procrastinate.

MY VOJO HIT BY A CAR ...

This has been particularly true for me since October 6, 2014 - the day I was hit by a car while crossing the street (result: broken wrist, injured leg and shoulder).

I’d barely gotten the use of my dominant hand back, when a surgery complication of my left hip resulted in a month-long hospital/rehab stay and an extended period of home and outpatient rehab after that.

Right now, until things heal more fully (the picture above is of me now, still using a walker/cane and leg brace to get around), I am working from home (feeling very grateful for my "personal studio”), and have only recently begun to drive again – but only to places that are handicap-accessible.

So - yeah - though I am meeting my voice over clients’ needs, my VOJO for that additional and necessary work has been cut short. Healing saps energy, but I’m finally ready to use a bit of that energy to reclaim my career.

But I needed a jump-start.

IF YOU GET STUCK ...


If you get stuck, complacent, or discouraged …how do you reignite the VOJO flame?

So, here’s what I did - and how it worked. Not about results, but certainly about action - and ACTION felt really good. It’s as easy as ABC …DE!

Step One: Admit It.

Admit that you’re stuck, and (but don’t spend too much time here) why you’re stuck.

Just like in therapy, often the main value in examining "why” is to see how you can (or can’t) fix it.

Example: For me, this means accepting what I currently can, and cannot do. NYC is out for now - but I can increase my marketing to e-learning and other virtual clients. Physical healing is top priority, but after that, returning to some voiceover marketing tasks outranks binge-watching Mad Men.

Step Two: Break Pattern

Break the 'stuck' pattern by doing one constructive thing. I went through my billables and sent out statements.

Step Three: Commit

Make a "Realistic Plus One” Commitment - specific and attainable. What, When, How?

For example: "Each weekday, I will touch five new potential clients – either by sending an audition, or submitting my demo after researching the prospect."

Step Four: Action!

Just Do It … and until it is done, stay away from Facebook and the refrigerator. 

And keep a record of it. A "Got Done” List can be very motivating.

Example: "Today I auditioned for projects for_____ CHECK!”)

Don’t let yourself indulge in the distracting activity until the task is done!

Step Five: Is Plan Working?

Evaluate the list and tasks weekly.

Example: Are five touches enough? Any results? Keep doing it, or increase?

The key here is to be realistic, but to push those boundaries just past the comfort zone (which for me, lately, has been with Don Draper and Peggy Olson).

Six seasons of Mad Men got me through a lot of pain. But now it’s time to move on - get my self-esteem back and be proactive again.

One step back into VOJO-land. And it feels great!  
-------------------------------------------------------
ABOUT RANDYE
Randye Kaye has over 20 years of experience as a voice talent, stage/TV/film actress, and radio personality, with a long list of major clients including Priceline.com, Dannon, Kyocera, Big Lots, Burger King, Executone, Continental Airlines, MISTO, Toshiba, Verizon, and many more. She provides a trustworthy and intelligent voice for countless websites, e-learning courses, phone systems, on-hold messages, promos, industrial narrations, audiobooks (children, adults), science/medical/technical instruction, video games, travel/real estate/museum tours, and live events. She is also a voice over coach with Edge Studio in New York City and Connecticut.
 

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Comments (6)
Marie Hoffman
2/21/2015 at 8:41 AM
Randye,

Hope you're back in the game 100% soon-est!
All the best,

Marie
Kitzie Stern
2/20/2015 at 1:03 PM
This was a great post, and timely for me as well. Surrendering to recovery is one thing, getting back in the game is another. Thanks for the motivation.
Mark Wangerin
2/19/2015 at 3:37 PM
Great pep talk! I needed this!
Elizabeth Holmes
2/19/2015 at 12:03 PM
Randye -- Your journey from injury to health is inspiring! Thank you for sharing it. And thank you for the practical advice about getting back on track. It may be "simple" but it's NOT easy. Your wonderful sense of humor shines through, and is an equally helpful lesson for all of us getting back on our feet after setbacks.
Pat Marvel
2/19/2015 at 10:48 AM
We all get stuck from time to time, but usually not because of circumstances as extreme as yours. Thanks for the helpful advice, and best wishes for your continued recovery.
Gene Tognacci
2/19/2015 at 9:58 AM
Terrific advice as usual! Thanks!
Stunned to hear of your accident and wish you the best as you continue to rehab and regain your Vojo!
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