I’d like to clarify^60 that the COVID-19 is not a pleasant thing, but pleasant things have come out of the COVID-19. My five week a-list acting experience at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts was one such thing and something I never would’ve been part of if the COVID-19 didn’t prevent me from studying abroad and holding an in person internship in London.
I learned so many valuable things about the actor, the mind, the body and the voice — but perhaps the most meaningful thing I learned was the importance of being in touch with myself. Being thankful for all I am, loving myself, and letting go of the fear of others’ perception of me – yes I know this is quite cliché, but it’s an important cliché. [I am a firm believer that clichés became clichés because they were so important]. All things aside, I want to touch upon a simple gratitude meditation I did every day in the program for this mini-series. It goes like this.
*Cue the voice of my movement teacher, the wonderful Ms. Nichols* *get into child’s pose* *breathe in through your nose and out your mouth* *close your eyes*
It’s just you.
Let’s say this together.
I am humble.
I am grateful.
I am thankful for this instrument.
I want you to find one small thing each day to be grateful for. It can be the same thing everyday or a different thing, but a small thing. Place that tiny thing of gratitude in your gratitude basket. And that gratitude basket is in the core of your subtle anatomy. Try, each day, to put that gratitude in there. And hopefully by the end of the week your basket will be FULL. And remember. The more gratitude we hold in our core, in our bodies, our soul, in the core of who we are, the more graciousness we have. The more empathy we have. And as artists, it HELPS you listen. It helps you be aware of others and as an actor there’s nothing more important than that. Listening. Awareness. Empathy. Knowing. Graciousness. Knowing that you’re okay and having that confidence and being able to communicate your story in those imaginary places so they will believe you.
Even though I did this meditation as part of an acting exercise, I don’t believe it’s just for artists. If everyone listened, if everyone was aware, if everyone was knowing, if everyone was gracious, if empathy was at the core of what we did, the world would be a very different place. However the world being where it is right now isn’t entirely terrible either, because good things can most certainly arise from the most troubling circumstances as we’ve covered earlier.
I’d like to encourage you, my reader, my friend, to find something small to be grateful for. What I’m planning to do now that the program is over is journaling that small thing each day – sometimes the hardest things to do are the small things you have to do each and every day [i.e. clean, brush your teeth, wash dishes, drive your son to school, read your bible] but In time, it’ll be a whole thick book of gratitude. Pretty remarkable, don’t you think?
Until next time,