Apply my successful 21-day acting challenge to writing & beyond
Last summer I did a 21-day self-tape challenge for acting, with Manuel Puro, a casting director based in UK. For 21 consecutive days, we were assigned new materials each day — we needed to learn it, tape it, upload it in the forum, and support each other’s work.
I saw tapes done in the car because the actor was running from job to job; I saw tapes done in the hospital because the actor was sick but didn’t want to miss a day.
It was touching and empowering simply to watch those tapes — not to mention how fun and eye-opening it was to see how we had completely different takes on the same material.
Why Taking the Challenge?
The point of the challenge is to build a habit, a muscle, a discipline. I successfully completed the challenge, created some interesting marketing material for myself, made some new friends, and reconnected with old ones.
It was also about making a commitment to yourself, and showing up for yourself. The challenge requires a fee, so we all had some skin in the game. Not showing up? Umm, not an option.
The most surprising benefit I got from the challenge was a massively improved short-term memory: I successfully memorized 4 pages of text during my lunch break one day. That was unprecedented.
Who Was I Being in the Challenge?
This is one of the favorite questions of my coach to help me re-create success: “ Who were you being during the audition?” “Who were you being during the consult?” “Who were you being during the headshot session to create this positive experience?”
Being comes before doing, and doing comes before having. If you want to have consistent results, work on your being first.
I was being flexible, open-minded, pleasant, present, spontaneous, and joyful. Now that I know that state of being that got me results, I just need to tap into that state again.
Well — actually no. I want to STAY in it— I want to keep practicing it and make it my go-to state of being, so I can have consistent results.
Applying the Lesson to Writing & Beyond
I’ve been wanting to do the 30-day Medium challenge, but different voices and opinions on this platform have put a question mark in my heart: “Should I go for it?”
Now recalling my acting challenge experience, the question has now become: “Do I want to go for it?” “ Am I willing to go for it?” Now I know my answer is yes.
When I replace “should” with “want”, I peel off the coat of external expectations and reclaim the power for myself.
From that place, I can access flexibility, open-mindedness, pleasantness, presence, spontaneity, and joy. You name it.
Here’s the thing: Challenges are less about achieving the results, more about becoming the person who can achieve the results.
Knowing this piece of truth will immensely free you because you will no longer give your power away to external circumstances by letting them determine your worth.
Now all the challenges are becoming fun — your eyes are no longer on the end, but on each present moment that can give birth to endless possibilities.
If you are still scared, or on the fence about doing something, do it now. Do it before your brain gets a chance to talk you out of it. Do it before you have time to overthink. Do it like you have no option but show up for yourself.
And remember — don’t focus on the results, focus on your being. You’re far more likely to succeed when you are enjoying it.
For more tips and inspiration, let’s stay connected.