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🧠 3 Brain Hacks for Setting Actor Goals

Updated: Jan 10, 2023

By Faith Hibbs-Clark, CMFA Founder

If you’re like many actors, you have big dreams for your future. But how do you get there? Goal setting is scientifically proven to help actors achieve their goals when a science-based method is used. Though many of us are great at setting goals, most of us know that sometimes they don't work out despite our best efforts. When this happens, it can be a bit upsetting to our self-esteem and deter us from wanting to set any new goals. Likely, those goals didn't work out because you didn't know the science of goal setting.
Here are three important brain hacks to help you achieve your goals without failure.
Just do it! Goal setting for actors and motivation go hand in hand. The goal is your journey, and the motivation is your fuel to get there. You may have gallons and gallons of fuel but no journey to go on. You may have many goals but no motivation to get there. What can stop you from going on that journey? There are many more things holding you back than you realize. I have taught this a lot in my classes when I discuss the brain and how it affects your auditions, but I will say it again, your brain is designed to do two things very well: survive & evolve.
A big part of your survival is not to try anything new. From your brain's perspective, familiarity equals safety. The problem is that your brain also needs to evolve. Therefore, you are often at odds with yourself. Perhaps you overthink things? Overthinking is just your brain's way of stalling. The best way for you to move past survival and into evolution is just to do it. Don't allow yourself any time to think about it. Set an alarm and train yourself to work on your goals as soon as that alarm sounds. The moment you start to think about it, you will start convincing yourself not to do it.

Make it emotional! Your acting goals should be emotionally based. If they aren’t emotionally based, the subcortical circuit involving the amygdala will not prioritize the information in your brain. This is important because stimuli that are emotional are given prioritized access to certain areas of your brain needed for optimal performance. Namely, the amygdala in your frontal lobe regions can subconsciously break down your goals in order to solve obstacles, even when you are not consciously thinking about them. The strong emotional importance that you have assigned to your acting goals makes the obstacles less significant in relation to the perceived benefit of obtaining your goals.

Make it visual! The brain associates visual stimulation with emotion because these two things are processed in the same portion of the brain. Prime your brain with external cues, such as images that trigger a subconscious memory in your mind that motivates you toward a goal without you even realizing what prompted you. It turns out those cheesy vision boards, cutting out images from magazines to reflect what you want in life, might have been onto something. If you want to be a bit more academic about it, try color-coding or creating charts or graphics that reflect your materialized goal. Want to take it a step further? You could try some meditation and try to visualize your future in your mind’s eye, and then ask yourself to walk into that picture.

Congratulations – you now have 3 brain hacks to help you with your goal-setting! The next thing you need to do is take full action and join me for the "Science of Goal Setting Special Topics Workshop & Program!. Sign up now!

© This information is copyrighted 2021 Communication Method for Actors, LLC

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