Stress and anxiety are very common in the acting business. As a result, here is a list of techniques that an actor can use to help manage their daily stresses and anxieties at their acting job.
Sometimes, we get stressed when everything happens all at once. When this happens, a person should take a deep breath and try to find something to do for a few minutes to get their mind off of the problem. A person could take a walk, listen to some music, read the newspaper or do an activity that will give them a fresh perspective on things.
When facing a current or upcoming task at your acting job that overwhelms you with a lot of anxiety, divide the task into a series of smaller steps and then complete each of the smaller tasks one at a time. Completing these smaller tasks will make the stress more manageable and increases your chances of success.
Challenge your negative thinking with positive statements and realistic thinking. When encountering thoughts that make you fearful or depressed, challenge those thoughts by asking yourself questions that will maintain objectivity and common sense. For example, you are afraid that if you do not get that job promotion then you will be stuck at your job forever. This depresses you, however your thinking in this situation is unrealistic. The fact of the matter is that there all are kinds of acting opportunities available and just because you don't get this job promotion doesn't mean that you will never get one.
Remember that no one can predict the future with one hundred percent certainty. Even if the thing that you feared does happen there are circumstances and factors that you can't predict which can be used to your advantage. For instance, you miss the deadline for a project you have been working on for the last few months. Everything you feared is coming true. Suddenly, your manager comes to you and tells you that the deadline is extended and that he forgot to tell you the day before. This unknown factor changes everything. Remember: We may be ninety-nine percent correct in predicting the future, but all it takes is for that one percent to make a world of difference.
In dealing with your anxieties of being an actor, learn to take it one day at a time. While the consequences of a particular fear may seem real, there are usually other factors that cannot be anticipated and can affect the results of any situation. Get all of the facts of the situation and use them to your advantage.
Stan Popovich is the author of A Layman's Guide to Managing Fear Using Psychology, Christianity and Non Resistant Methods - an easy to read book that presents a general overview of techniques that are effective in managing persistent fears and anxieties. For additional information go to: http://www.managingfear.com/