An Actors guide to staying sane

We've pulled together a short checklist of things to keep in mind when you're an actor. Give them a read and see how many you think you're doing...

1) Stay in touch

Communicate regularly with other actors - people you trained with/have worked with. Share your experiences, encourage each other, have a get together and do a letter-writing day, or do a play reading, or organise a workshop. Show support when they are in something so they can return the favour.

2) Read Everything

Books - plays, actor biogs, acting guides etc., go to plays, watch films. Learn as much as you can - there is always something new to learn.

3) Set yourself an achievable achievable goal

In your first year out of Drama school your first one could be getting your first job. Then once you have achieved that you could look at getting enough work to create a show reel, then the next one could be getting an agent etc and so on.

4) Be honest with yourself

How many jobs have you actually applied for? If you look at it as 100 applications = 20 auditions = 1 job, you may find your just not applying for as much stuff as you think.

5) Keep fit

Lethargy breeds lethargy. As an actor you don't usually have much money, so try these money saving ideas:

  • Go for a walk - its free - even better offer your services as a dog walker at your local dogs home then you are walking with a purpose (and you can feel good about doing something worthwhile)
  • Cycle - you can pick up cheap bikes from Ebay or some police stations auction off bikes that have been found/stolen & never claimed.
  • Buy a cheap exercise DVD
  • Check out www.moneysavingexpert.com they currently have an article regarding free gym membership through private medical insurance, which works out cheaper than gym membership.
  • Check out your local leisure centre as opposed to private gyms, they are usually cheaper & many hold a variety of classes.
  • Eat properly; the tendency when you are feeling low is to go for the high fat/sugar/salt option, which in the long term will only make you feel worse. Try to have 3 meals a day - breakfast being the most important one. Supermarket fruit & veg can be expensive, try you local grocers if you're lucky enough to have one, they are often cheaper. Aim to have a balanced diet.

6) Stay positive

It may sound obvious but try to stay positive; do you really want to put yourself through agony every time you are out of work for the next 50 odd years?