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Rejection is never the easiest part to deal with when it comes to acting. However, the most important thing to remember with rejection is that it doesn’t have to be as terrible as you may make it out to be. The pain of rejection can literally cease to exist from your emotional experience altogether as an actor. The following list of tips will show you how you can achieve this.

Focus on the feeling

In order to eliminate something, the first step is always awareness. You might think that you’re aware of what rejection feels like, but make sure you concentrate because if you’ve been pained by rejection as an actor, odds are you’re missing one very important piece of the puzzle. Let’s identify it. The feeling. The one that hits you when you find out that you didn’t get the role. Your heart sinks. You mind reels, rewinding the whole audition experience, wondering what you could have done differently, wondering just ‘why?’ in general. This is an experience that all actors have experienced. That is why professional working actors, even famous ones always have something to say about rejection. The reason why it’s so hard to deal with and why it feels so bad, is because you’re focusing on the wrong thing.

Deconstructing rejection

The Five “Traditional” Stages Of Rejection:

Stage 1: You get the audition

Stage 2: You start to get excited about the possibility of getting the role and you get attached to the idea of booking it.

Stage 3: You don’t get the role

Stage 4: You fall into a hole.. A sort of “hole of emotional despair”. And once you’re down there, it’s very hard to pull yourself out of it. Eventually you find your way out, but it can take a while.

Stage 5: This typical pattern of rejection becomes even worse because then you have the dreaded feeling of falling down that hole again for the next time that you audition.

The rejection mistake you don’t know you’re making

Surprisingly, the most painful misstep that you’re making, the one that is causing the pain from the rejection isn’t from not getting the part. It’s because Stage 2 is two entirely separate things that you may have blended together and are experiencing as one. You’ve couples experiencing the EXCITEMENT about the idea of booking the role with the ATTACHMENT to that very idea.

Excitement minus attachment equals freedom

If you rebuild the rejection process without that, then it changes everything. So with that in mind, imagine this new list instead:

Stage 1: You get the audition

Stage 2: You start to get excited about the possibility of getting the role. You imagine what it feels like to simply book it. You picture yourself shooting it. You hear the director yell action and you begin to play the scene out. You revel in the infinite possibilities of what your acting career could look and feel like when you book this role.

Stage 3: You don’t get the role

Stage 4: Since attachment to the outcome wasn’t a part of your plan, there is not hole to fall down

Stage 5: It doesn’t exist. You decide to keep going and move forward. You focus on how good it feels to imagine yourself booking roles. You choose to use your creative powers of imagination (the very ones that make you a gifted actor) to think, dream and feel what booking feels like as often as possible. That would be the best space for you to be in. Also, if you separate your excitement with the possibility of booking from becoming attached to that idea, you will be in a much better space to actually create success as an actor.

The reason for this is so simple. Because attachment to the outcome is always the part that will drive you down to that hole of despair. So in the old pattern, if you don’t get the part, then of course you fall into the hole of emotional despair because you attached yourself to the idea of getting it.

Rewind. Redo. Rewrite

If you rewind and rewrite the way you “do” rejection by going back to that excitement feeling but never creating attachment to it. If you don’t get the role, it shouldn’t even be a bump in the road. If you get it, that’s great. If you don’t get it, great. You feel good and you need to skip over all of that attachment, then if you don’t end up getting it, theres really no reason to fall down that hole.

Or, when you get really good at it, there’s just no hole in front of you at all. You don’t have to pick yourself up because you never fell down to begin with. The reason why rejection might have been so hard for you as an actor, is because you’ve identified rejection with clawing your way out of that hole, (which is deeply attached to the significance of getting the role.)

Rejoice despite rejection

Those particular components don’t actually need to be a part of your experience as an actor. You can still experience the excitement. You can still imagine all of the possibilities of what could happen- and you should. The more positivity that you immerse yourself in, the more good feeling thoughts and experiences you have. Remember.. As an actor, your ability to feel good should not be dependent on whether or not you book a role. This is a really big thing that you should understand.

That excitement about you and your life and your acting career is absolutely not possible upon the outcome of you booking a specific role. Once you understand certain components that create the bad feelings around rejection, you can change them.