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Give It Away

from the old blog Aug 18, 2016

You’ve heard that thing about the tree falling in the forest, right? It goes like this:

“If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?”

Commence deep philosophical conversation.

I want to apply this same question to communication:

“If a person speaks and no one is there to receive it, is it communication?”

I want to make the argument that it’s not. Communication is a two way street… there’s gotta be a...

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Ease up on that emotional pressure

from the old blog Aug 05, 2016

Last week on the blog, I introduced an idea I call “actor voice.” Actor voice is when a performer or speaker doesn’t sound authentic because they are stuck in a vocal pattern. I named a handful of different vocal patterns that are possible to get stuck in, and today I want to elaborate further on a specific one I mentioned called “emotional pressure.” Here’s what it is:

Emotional pressure is when you let the idea of the emotion you’re...

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Do you have “actor voice”??

from the old blog Jul 28, 2016

Okay, so there’s this thing that sometimes happens with actors that like to call “actor voice.” Let me explain.

Actor voice is when something about the performer’s voice sounds or feels inauthentic. As the listener, your bullshit meter starts to siren: “Bull-shit bull-shit! Something about what that person is doing is FAKE. I don’t believe them. They’re not thinking of this in the moment! They planned this!”

Well of course they planned it,...

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Better OUT than IN

from the old blog Jul 14, 2016

You woke up this morning and you feel crappy. You’re sad, you’re out of sorts, and you don’t feel like going to work (/school/rehearsal/wherever you need to go). What should you do?

Option A: Stay in bed.

Option B: Get up and mope around feeling sad. Stare blankly at the mirror while you brush your teeth. Drag yourself out the door.

Option C: Turn on Kanye and jam it out. Chug some coffee. Bounce out the door.

Answer?

Any of them. All of them. None of them. It...

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Learn how we learn everything (aka the Unconscious Competence Model)

from the old blog Jul 08, 2016

Recently I’ve been teaching something called the “Unconscious Competence Model” in my classes and sessions a lot. I like to alternately call it the “how-we-learn-anything/OMG-this-explains-everything” model, because it describes how we learn anything new or acquire a new skill. I believe that when we dive in and hack this process it gives us a much better understanding of the work we need to do to change, and the LETTING GO we need to do to let...

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How do we cope in the face of world events?

from the old blog Jul 01, 2016

I’m part of an amazing community of female entrepreneurs on Facebook (it’s called Dreamers//Doersand truly, it’s amazing), and we often converse about things beyond the scope of our businesses. This past weekend, our founder shared a beautiful post about how challenging it can be to cope with the news of tragic or unsettling world events. She posed a question, which I’ll rephrase like this:

How do we cope with the intense emotions that come up when we watch the...

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It’s time to become a smoothie

from the old blog May 11, 2016

I’ve been going through a very big time lately. I told myself that 2016 was going to be my Year of Transformation, and boy oh boy stuff is transforming. A lot of things are falling away, new things are emerging, and in general BIG CHANGE is happening in every aspect of my life.

One of the reasons I’ve been interested in transformation is that I feel like I’ve spent most of my adult life racing to catch up. Always rushing to meet a deadline, hurrying to not be late,...

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Letting Go Is Not a Doing

from the old blog Apr 22, 2016

Recently I floated in a sensory deprivation tank for the first time. I’ve been curious about trying it for awhile, and oh my goodness I’m so glad I did because it was magical. It was absolutely fascinating to be in an environment with no immediate boundaries (I mean yes the tank has walls, but the point is you don’t have to be in contact with them). At times it felt like being in the womb, at times it felt like floating among the stars, and at times it felt like being...

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The Three Keys to Performing

from the old blog Apr 08, 2016

I work with and teach a lot of actors, and lately I’ve been thinking a lot about what a complex task it is to perform. On one hand it’s the most natural thing in the world. On the other hand though, to appear natural in front of an audience is perhaps the hardest task ever known to man. (Corroborated by the fact that people fear public speaking more than death!)

I’ve come to believe that when we’re performing, we’re always balancing three things. Those three...

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Let’s talk about your diaphragm

from the old blog Mar 26, 2016

Okay, let’s talk about your diaphragm. I know we voice coaches says things like “breathe with your diaphragm” or “use diaphragmatic breathing,” but to be honest that language is misleading. Why? Because it’s kinda like saying “walk with your feet”…. what else are you supposed to do it with anyway?

Unless your diaphragm is paralyzed (and you’d know if it was!), it’s moving when you breathe. So the question is not whether...

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