​The Healthy Actor: How to Feel and Perform Your Best This Year

​The Healthy Actor: How to Feel and Perform Your Best This Year

By Ashley Ward

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The beginning of a new year (and a new decade) gives us all the opportunity to start fresh and take on healthier habits that better serve our bodies, minds, and careers. It’s a time for
everyone- not just actors – to ask themselves: How can I be the best version of myself this year? It all starts with our health. To get you feeling and performing your best, here are a few tips to help launch you into your healthiest and most successful year yet.

Take Care of Your Body

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Our bodies are our biggest instruments as actors, so it’s important we take care of them:

• Get enough sleep. If you know your call-time is going to be very early in the morning, go to
bed early the night before. Since most film projects require you to be on set for an average
of 12 hours, you’ll be glad you did.
• Exercise regularly. Regular exercise is not just a good way to keep your body fit and
energized. It also supports healthy sleep and can help burn off anxiety or excess nerves.
Regular yoga and meditation is a great option for this as well.
• Eat regular, healthy meals. This can be difficult to do while working on set. If you’re filming
back-to-back scenes all day, or you’re unsure of what the catering schedule is like, bring
your own healthy snacks and drink plenty of water. Stay away from excess sugar, caffeine,
and energy drinks to prevent you from crashing later.
• Prepare for the season. Summer and winter can bring some brutal days, and New Mexico
is no exception. Make sure to wear plenty of sunscreen and stay hydrated during those
summer shoots. In many areas, winter temperatures can reach below freezing, so make
sure to layer up with thermals, a warm coat, and gloves. It’s always better to be over-
prepared than under.
• Know your limits. Your health and safety – physical and mental – should be number one
priority, no matter the project. Whether you’re doing stunt work or taking on a dramatic role
that may jeopardize your mental health, make sure you have a solid support team. Private
coaching can help you prepare for situations like this.

Let Go of Negative or Toxic Relationships

Your success as an actor, and a person, relies on the confidence you have in yourself and your
abilities. You are who you surround yourself with, so try to seek out heathy relationships with
people who have your genuine interest at heart. Let go of any and all relationships that either
drain you, hurt you, or hold you back. As the wise actor, Jim Carrey, would say, “If their absence brings you peace, you didn’t lose them.”

Let Go of Imposter Syndrome

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Those suffering with imposter syndrome constantly fight with feelings of inadequacy, despite their apparent success. For those suffering from f​eeling like an imposter in acting, or in other professions, it’s time to take steps this year to overcome it. Be kind to yourself, talk about your feelings with people you trust, and seek support if needed. You can create the future you visualize for yourself.

Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

This has to be one of the biggest culprits for actors holding themselves back. In order to feel and perform your best, it’s important to stay focused on your path. Just because you don’t get called back for a role doesn’t mean you’re not a great actor. Stay passionate and celebrate what makes you different and unique. Sometimes, our biggest insecurities become the reasons we get cast.

Practice self discipline

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Discipline is one of the highest forms of self-care out there. If you can ignore life’s little
pleasures (when necessary) and follow through with the task at hand, you’ll be that much closer to the bigger picture you envision for yourself. For actors, this may look like sacrificing a night out with friends or family to fully prepare yourself for an upcoming audition. Work now, play later. Your future self will thank you.

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​Being a healthy actor means building a healthy foundation. Learn everything you need to know to build your acting career the right way in The 6 Month Acting Intensive starting January 12th!
​Students receive instructions from some of the best teachers in New Mexico along with casting directors, agents and other industry professionals.