is that "I am the only one." as in: "I am the only one who has ever gone through this." or "I am the only one who has ever felt this way." No matter what words follow "I am the only one", the subtext is the same: "There is something wrong with me." This pattern of thought isolates us. Causes us to withdraw from one another for fear of being exposed.
I've come across various articles, and listened to podcasts and interviews involving actors in various stages and levels of their respective careers. What I have heard is a variety of thoughts and feelings that mirror my own. One year can be a HUGE year for my acting career, and the next year (when auditions/ bookings are especially slow or nonexistent) I'm found asking myself "what if?" Y'all know the drill (all together now) "What I never get another gig?" "What if last year was a fluke?" "What if they* discover I'm really just winging it all?" In my head I know that trying to find answers to these questions is a fool's errand, but in my gut, the questions feel legitimate. In my efforts to shake these thoughts, I've started painting more, reading more, writing, listening to music... indulging my other interests. My rationale is that living a more well-rounded life actually serves my acting, and if I never book another acting job, I can still have a well-rounded life.
Many of the other actors (some big names, some not) in the interviews and articles were saying the same things: "What if I never get another job?" "What if they* find out I'm a fraud?" And then there were several who've had reached the same conclusion that I have: That it's important to have other interests, other options, and people in your life that help you keep it all in perspective. It relieves me to realize that I am not the only one who's had these thoughts, and that asking these questions doesn't mean I'm faithless, it means I'm human. And I'm really glad to know I'm not the only one.
*Who are "they" anyway??
Edit of a post originally published at Backstage: Unscripted