The talent, the craft & the mindset

Happy New Year!

2019 is well on its way, and theatre audition season in NYC has begun.

Let’s talk:

In my experience, these are the three crucial aspects of the artist who wants to pursue/is pursuing a career:

Talent. Craft. Mindset.

Let’s just agree that the business, no matter what area of the business you are pursuing, is not fair, needs change, and a whole lot more. Let’s take it out of the equation for a moment.

What can you, the artist, the performer, control?

The development of your talent.

The craft that allows you to reveal that talent fully and authentically.

The mindset that can make or break you as you navigate the mine field called show business.

This also brings to mind the ACT of professionalism. Just because you are being paid, doesn’t necessarily make you a professional; nor does making a choice to work for community theatre make you automatically an amateur. This is about MINDSET.

Mindset is the driving force under your talent, your development of craft, and how you move into your career - at whatever level it is.

Mindset allows you see your talent and seek out what you need to develop it to its fullest. It allows you permission to create and develop craft. It allows you to see your patterns, to acknowledge your emotional and psychological intelligence, and how to claim these, and gives you permission to change.

Mindset affects attitude, self-talk, motivation; it also induces self-sabotage; crippling self-doubt; It also can allow you freedom to explore, to release, to learn and to behave and respond in a way that is healthy, open and available.

I have seen just as many unprofessional mindsets trying to pursue a career than I have seen professional mindsets in community theatre there to create theatre. Mindset is EVERYTHING.

So, what is the magic here? CHOICE.

And what is the sabotage of mindset? EXCUSE.

You can CHOOSE to be professional in your attitude with yourself. You can CHOOSE to pursue excellence and craft. You can CHOOSE to develop your talent. You can CHOOSE the behavior. You can CHOOSE how you speak to yourself. You can CHOOSE to acknowledge how the business is a pain in the ass and do your work anyway.

You can also CHOOSE to walk away if you aren’t feeling it, aren’t aligned with it, don’t want it anymore. You can CHOOSE to move in another direction.

You can also choose to make excuses; to make dramatic declarations; and you can choose to believe them, or not.

The mindset can create momentum, or it can completely debilitate you. One is a professional mindset; one is not.

And even THAT is a choice. If you can see the difference, then you can CHANGE it.

So if the magic is to CHOOSE, then make it count. And if it’s not the choice you want, then CHANGE THE CHOICE.

Are the most talented people working all the time? No. Is talent the entire picture? No.

Are you aware of what you need? Are you aware of what the business is doing? Do you recognize what you need to do to have a chance? Do you recognize your mindset? Do you know you have the power to change that if it’s getting in your way?

Doubt, dry spells, a time of walking through the desert, are all part of the artist’s journey as they pursue a career choice. Are you willing to find the professionalism of mindset to navigate that? What are you willing to do to stay the course? to change to the course? to BE the change?

Seek your level. Know your level. Begin there. Discover what you have, where you are, and what you need to do, to CHANGE. There’s nothing more disappointing than undeveloped potential - in talent, craft AND mindset.

If you want change, be the change. Seek the mindset you wish to have; the one you know you need to have to find the success you pursue. Let that mindset balance with the talent and the craft you are given and are striving to develop & reveal.

The mindset then begins to help to create a place for you: A place that is unique to you and what you have to offer, what you can do, what you can say with your talent and your craft.

Seek to SEE it. Acknowledge it. Make the changes to align the talent and craft and mindset. It’s up to you, and only you. Claim THAT control, because it’s yours to claim.

Susan Eichhorn Young covers all things voice—strong and sophisticated singing and speaking. 

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