As multi-hyphenates in this over-sharing, over-connected, social-media-approval driven world, it’s often easy to feel like we are doing all that we can do to move forward. That we have every minute of the day accounted for and that our life is running according to our well-planned out calendar.
But what about your soul? Your heart? Your spirit? Call it what you want, but there’s a part of each of us that is nourished on much more than regular food, progress, success, that next booking, or a successful crowd-funding campaign.
My past year or so has been a mixture of disconnecting and re-charging with things like Yoga, Acupuncture, and other holistic healings, as well as re-connecting with the things that really matter and/or things that I really want in my life.
In 2010, I did something super scary and after a solid 11 years in Los Angeles, I packed up my car and headed East for an extended break.
Once I got back east, I found myself running from Philly to NY daily to meet with casting directors, attend workshops etc., and it took me about 2 months to realize I wasn’t taking that BREAK that I travelled 3000 miles for. I was still running, running, running. So I imposed a break. I told myself it was OKAY if the only thing on my calendar that day was a yoga class. It was OKAY if I sat on the couch in my pj’s and read books all day. It was difficult, but slowly but surely I found myself relaxing and disconnecting.
As actors we work so hard at networking, sending out updates, postcards and mailings, that it’s a scary thought to let all that go, even temporarily. BUT, what’s more important; that a casting director got another postcard from you announcing changes on your website, OR, taking time to feed your soul, so that the next time you DO run into that casting director, she/he can read the relaxed energy all over you.
I opted for the relaxed energy.
And now that I’m back full-time in Los Angeles, I’m redefining myself. Learning who and what I really want to still be connected to. Restructuring my business plans and deciding what works and what doesn’t. I haven’t sent out a postcard update in TWO YEARS. However, I’ve decided, it’s time for a new update. I have new headshots, a new website, a new commercial agent, and frankly, I’m going to be cast much differently than I was 2 years ago, so it’s time for a new mailing. I’m going into it with ease though. I’m no longer stressed that I have to keep the top agents and managers and 500 other people updated on my every move.
Take a look at your current schedule, your daily routine, your monthly routine. Where can you fit in time for a soul recharging? What things did you used to do, that maybe you’ve forgotten about?
When I first joined SAG, I attended SAG Foundation events all the time! 3x a week, maybe even more! I volunteered for events, I moderated events, I attended events. For me, that wasn’t work, it was a soul-charge. I always leave those events feeling inspired and motivated. So, I’m actively attending those events again. I went to a Conversation with Scott Baio last week, and loved it. It’s something I realize that is missing from my life.
There are little things that you can add to your schedule for a soul-charge. We live in Los Angeles. When was the last time you grabbed a blanket and a book and sat on the beach (or in a park)?! If you have to think about it, it’s too long. So a few weekends ago, I decided to do just that; two days in a row actually. One day I drove over to Malibu just as the sun was setting but with enough time to get one chapter in my book read, and the other day I went to Dockweiler and spent a few hours relaxing on my blanket alone.
However, I highly recommend taking some time off even if it’s just for a day or two. Last weekend, I went camping for 48 hours with the folks from www.AgapeLive.com
Two days of virtually no social media (okay I posted a couple of photos, but I wasn’t responding to comments or tweets), eating healthy, sleeping under the stars and soaking in the goodness of nature. It did my body, mind, and soul a world of good. I feel like a different person to be honest. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. I was 40 minutes away from LA, in a borrowed tent, with a $29.99 sleeping bag from Target. But the experience was priceless.
What can you do this week to give your soul some food? What have you forgotten about in your daily routine that gives you extreme pleasure? How soon can you plan a quick little get-away to a nature spot? Have any favorite spots for a soul-recharge, let me know, I might join you!