This one is for my actors. Regarding my beef with “how to excel on social media for actors” articles.
Many articles are out there spouting seemingly helpful information for actors in this age of social media frenzy. And while with beautiful intention, these articles are almost ALWAYS written from someone on the end of the mythological finish line, in “success” mode but with no knowing if they’re in actual “content” mode. And written in a result-oriented-make-sure-everything-you-put-out-is-perfect-and-catchy-no-room-to-experiment-and-grow kind of way. Almost threatening in nature. Making you feel like if you don’t get the hang of promoting yourself in this new methodology that you are “behind”. Every actor’s worst fear.
So these articles come off to me like advertisements. Already piercing a reader at where they may feel “lack” the most and advertising the “cure” for it. But what about the other age old truth that is…the more you “blueprint” something and patten it…the more it loses its authenticity? And that, as artists, following blueprints is precisely what keeps us in our head and out of action in our actual craft?
So yes. Not all the advice from these articles are off. I know this. At their core I think what they’re trying to gear us towards believing that we DO have a message and mission on this planet and to share that boldly. And I too even enjoy being on social media and find some tips to be very useful for my own utilization of the tool. However, what’s sticking in my brain is an article for actors i just read yesterday on how to craft themselves on social media, step by step, from one of our main trade publications.
While some of the steps were shared in attainable baby steps such as, “being regular with your posts”, others like, “make sure your message is always consistent,” “comment on other people’s pages in your industry,” and… dear god… “develop your unique hashtag and make sure it doesn’t suck and that it’s memorable”… what?!?!?!?!
Ok. Why I cringe at these pieces of advice (with wording altered as i don’t have the article in front of me) is because… again it puts one into “result” mind… takes them out of authentic sharing… encourages one to spend more time chasing and being on their phones in general rather than living and expressing themselves and practicing their art…connecting and communicating… and the hashtag bit. yes cool. i get it. to have your very own hashtag that feels authentic to you can be an amazing way to share yourself. but to put the pressure on it from the start. ewwwwww.
for a poor actor wondering if they’re even good enough to be creating their own hashtag, what they need to do increase their personal power is to know their worth. as a human. this comes from…being an awake human. self love. and by practicing their craft.
i say this. in my experience, no matter how many workshops i’ve ever done, or showcases, before or after hashtags and twitter and instagram were a thing, it is when i am in consistency with my actual ART that i flow or do not flow. i shine most when i am authentically happy and at peace with myself and not…again i’ll use the word…”chasing.”
i believe the more we’re encouraged to attach our worth to how many likes and follows we receive, the more dangerous and volatile world we create.
no joke. and that it may already be time as creatives to, yes, still treat our social media tools like a conversation and respect those conversations with call and response like we would any conversation, but to also share even more bold advice about sticking to the craft and your own authentic journey amidst this age of dangerous comparison.
p.s. this is post i just impulsively wrote. while in paris. unplanned. and i’m gonna put it up. because i haven’t written in a while. it’s in the moment real time. i have to leave this gluten free bakery (chambelland boulangerie…my LOVE) and catch my plane. and i’m practicing non-judgment. of myself.
p.p.s. i do however, know that consistency in anything is the key. and to drop the fear of “if i focus ONE way, do I LOSE all my other ways of interest?” is what i’m personally needing to put to practice. i hope to include more blogging in my consistency.