Back in ’06, I and one of my best mates were given complete creative control over the second hour of an actor showcase. We had six weeks to write the skits and segments, hold a casting call, get approval, direct and act in the bits ourselves, and fill that time as best we could. At the time, it felt like the scariest, most nerve-wracking insanity ever, but we pulled it off.
Fast forward to 2012, when I landed my first play in Hollywood (yes, Hollywood has plays). I had 9 days to learn all the lines and blocking before opening night. I felt like I was running around like a headless chicken, but I succeeded with flying colors. In 2013, I was brought into another show when an actor quit 5 days before opening night. I had to pull together a Texan accent (accents are NOT something I’m good at, not by a long shot), and memorize some rather complicated choreography for the fight scene, but I kicked that fight scene right in the rear.
So a week ago when I was asked to take part in a time-sensitive play festival, I didn’t hesitate, even when I learned that there would only be 50 hours from the first written word to curtain in front of a live audience. I took a deep breath and that good old grin crept across my face as I said “Lets do this.” We had record attendance. We got great reviews. I even managed to get some of the Smile TV crew to come to the play (and they still let me back in the office afterward).
Life doesn’t always give us enough time to prepare. I’ve faced a number of challenges over the years when I felt unprepared, but I often surprise myself with how well I’m able to handle the challenge. Even though these challenges sometimes seem to get more intense, I also find that I’m able to handle more and more. That’s personal growth for you.
Believe in yourselves folks, we can all perform above and beyond our own expectations, if, of course you have the right perspective, and know that these are not impossibilities in front of us, they are just challenges, and we can overcome any challenge, because we are powerful.