How to Build Your Empire: The Waiting Game
It's happened to all of us, landing an awesome meeting that could potentially lead to realizing one of your ultimate goals. Awesome, right? The meeting went well, you did your follow-up, and now, you wait.
The tick-tock of the clock, every beep of my cell phone, every email, I hold my breath and say a little prayer and hope it’s them. Alas, a week has passed, and in the normal world, that’s not a lot of time, but in the entertainment world, that’s a lifetime. I haven’t heard no, but I haven’t heard yes. Dealing with the waiting, the unknown, the never hearing back, and the “rejection,” can be tough for any creative professional.
So when the waiting game weighs you down, follow my steps below to make it through those uncertain times.
Step #1: Allow yourself to be happy. Sometimes I don’t allow myself to be happy when a great opportunity arises because I’m scared of jinxing it or what if it doesn’t work out in my favor? But I have to remind myself that I have to be happy during the pursuit of my goals and that I earned these benchmarks of success. Getting “there” is not guaranteed and I owe it myself to stay open, positive, and happy while on the journey of realizing my dreams.
Step #2: Allow yourself to be sad and hurt. It’s ok to throw yourself a pity party if you don’t book that golden role or if you don’t hear back from that dream job meeting you had. For one minute.For one minute wallow it, cry, eat some ice cream, boo and hiss. Then wipe away your tears because it’s time to move on. Booking the job is out of your control – so why should you feel bad about yourself? I know we are human and it’s hard not to personalize these “rejections” but usually the reason why you don’t get the role has nothing to do with you. Let it out and then take your power back.
Step #3: Remember to be grateful. Remember to come from a place of gratitude that you are on the pursuit of realizing your ultimate goals. How many actors and other creative professionals would kill just to “get in the room”? There’s “no there, there” – all that we have is the here and the now. So be happy and grateful for each little victory. Just being committed to living the life you were meant to lead means that you’ve already won.
Step #4: Celebrate. Whether or not the phone rings with that dream job confirmation, celebrate. Celebrate your self. Celebrate the pursuit. Celebrate that you are one step closer to realizing your dreams. Celebrate the opportunity.
Step #5: Take action. Sometimes after not booking that dream job even though I kicked butt in the audition or in the meeting, I get stagnant, paralyzed in my “woe is me” moment. But I pick myself up, realize how lucky I am, stand firm in gratitude, celebrate myself, and then I take action. I follow up with leads and contacts, I self submit, I go for a run, I seek support from my friends, I do something that inspires me and makes me happy. Soon you’ll be too busy celebrating and taking meaningful action in your life to worry about any email or phone call.
What step can you take today to put the joy back into your pursuit and take ownership over “the waiting game”?
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