Does What Other People Think Really Matter?
Most of us have, at one time or another, been caught in the trap of worrying about what “everybody” will say or think about us. But who is “everybody?”
Martha Beck, author of Finding Your Own North Star, points out that we each have our own concept of “everybody” that is made up of a few key people in our lives—and at least a few of these key people are the ones who have hurt us in some way. We do this in order to protect ourselves from further hurt . . . yet in doing so, we hand a bit of control over to people who don’t have our best interests at heart.
The next time you catch yourself thinking, “Everybody says . . .” or “Everybody wants me to . . .”, stop and challenge that thought. Can you name even one person who would actually do that? If so, does that person love you and want only the best for you? If not, why are you listening to him or her? Fill the ranks of your “everybody” with those who love and support you unconditionally.
If you watched the Academy Awards this year (2007) you saw a glowing Jennifer Hudson accept her Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in Dream Girls. You remember Jennifer, right? She's the singer/contestant who did NOT win American Idol. In fact, during the competition Simon even went so far as to predict that she'd NEVER make it.
Jennifer exemplifies a crucial part of what it takes to be a big success in the entertainment industry. Even though she'd been told (before a national TV audience, no less) that she was a “loser” and she didn't have what it took, she kept moving forward and working toward her dream. She didn't go home - she didn't quit - she didn’t believe what other people told her. And because she hung in there, she walked away with a very prestigious little gold man of her very own.
Where would she have been watching the Oscar presentation from that night if she'd fallen to pieces and assumed Simon's opinion was anything more than just his opinion?
Jennifer's story points out an extremely important lesson - one that every performer MUST learn if they are to achieve any degree of success: Rejection is a show business reality and it's important to learn how to deal with it.
There will always be those who tell you that your dream is “impossible.” But if you are passionate about your dream and believe in yourself - really believe - no one can stop you! Even if rejection slows you down slightly, if you know in your heart you're on the right path - nothing, nor anyone - can keep you from reaching your dreams.
Hey, we all have our opinions - it doesn't mean they are always correct. Simon's certainly wasn't.
If working in voiceover is your passion, pursue your dream with everything you’ve got. Study with everyone you can. Read every book on the subject you can get your hands on. And, get involved with workshops, discussion boards, and voiceover events like VOICE (the VoiceOver International Creative Experience). You will learn something from every coach and other voice talent you connect with—even if what you learn is that their opinion of you is not accurate.
Here are some resources for more information and training:
VoiceOver International Creative Experience - annual conference for voice talent
The Art of Voice Acting Workshops and Seminars
Books and products for advancing your skills in the craft and business of voiceover
Voiceover coaches and other training
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