Oprah

9 Qualities of Remarkable Entertainers/Actors

What separates the best in show biz from everyone else? (Hint: It’s not about the money.)

Good entertainers make money.

Great entertainers make us smile and make serious money for themselves in the process.

Remarkable entertainers do more than make us smile and make money. They are the few who possess qualities that don’t appear only in bank account balances, but do make a significant impact on the lives of their audiences, inner circles, and communities.

Here are nine qualities of remarkable entertainers:

1. They find happiness in the success of others.

Great sports teams win because their most talented players are willing to sacrifice ego and acknowledgment to make others look great. Great theater productions, TV series and notable films are made up of actors who help each other, know their roles, set aside personal “perks”, and value co-operative success over everything else. Where does that attitude come from? You. Every great entertainer answers the question, “Can you make the choice that your happiness will come from the success of others?” with a resounding “Yes!”

2. They relentlessly seek new experiences.

Novelty seeking—getting bored easily and throwing yourself into new pursuits or activities – is often linked to gambling, drug abuse, and attention deficit disorder. But according to some leading doctors, novelty seeking is one of the traits that keeps you healthy and happy and fosters personality growth as you age… if you combine adventurousness and curiosity with persistence and a sense that it’s not all about you, then you get the creativity that benefits society as a whole, and THAT translates to creativity in show biz. To succeed, you want to be able to regulate your impulses (don’t take that gig that isn’t quite right just to have one!) while also having the imagination to see what the future would be like if you tried something new.

Check out this “something new” I tried on my birthday a few years back.  Definitely a novelty.  So go ahead – embrace your inner novelty seeker. You’ll be healthier, you’ll have more friends, and you’ll be generally more satisfied with life.

3. They don’t think work/life balance; they just think life.

When you have burning passion for this career, work-life boundaries are almost impossible to maintain. Why? You are your business. Your business is your life, just like your life is your business – which is also true for family, friends, and interests—so there is no separation, because all those things make you who you are.

Remarkable entertainers find ways to include family instead of ways to exclude work. They find ways to include interests, hobbies, passions, and personal values in their daily business lives.  Ever notice the “big boys” working with the same people (sometimes friends and family) over and over again?  It’s because they have become a part of each other’s lives.  So hire your parents, kids and friends for you latest webisode or cabaret act, student film or full length feature.  Network like crazy and bring in to your creative path the people you like and enjoy in your LIFE.  If you can’t, you’re not living—you’re just working.

4. They’re incredibly empathetic.

Unless you create something entirely new on your own—which I encourage as an actorpreneur, but is very hard to do—your business is based on fulfilling an existing need or solving a problem.

In order to identify a need or a problem you must have the ability to put yourself in another person’s shoes, particularly the casting director and creative team of the “place” you want to work; that’s the mark of a successful entertainer. But remarkable entertainers go a step farther, regularly putting themselves in the shoes of their audience. Success isn’t a line trending upwards. Success is a circle. No matter how high your profile—and your ego—soars, success still comes back to your audience.

5. They have something to prove – to themselves.

Many actors have a burning desire to prove other people wrong.  You know who I’m talking about –  that acting teacher from long ago that didn’t see your true talent; the family member who still thinks you’re crazy for choosing this career; the gal that beat you out of the perfect role in your 5th grade play…you’ll show them! These are great motivators. Remarkable entertainers are driven by something deeper and more personal. True drive, commitment, and dedication springs from a desire to prove something to the most important person of all.  You.

6. They ignore the 40-hour workweek hype.

Studies show that working more than 40 hours a week decreases productivity. Whatever. Successful business owners (uh huh, that’s YOU) work smarter, sure, but they also outwork their competition. I personally don’t know a SINGLE soul who works more than I do (outside of Tracy Costa of course!)  There will always be people who are smarter and more talented than you. Remarkable entertainers want it more. They’re ruthless—especially with themselves.  Remarkable entertainers simply work harder. That’s the real secret of their success.

7. They see money as a responsibility, not a reward.

Many successful actor cautionary tales involve buying 17 cars, loading up on pricey antiques, flying to and from private islands in private planes, importing Christmas trees, and spending $40,000 a year for a personal masseuse.  Wait—maybe that’s just Oprah! But being a remarkable entertainer includes not seeing money solely as a personal reward; they see money as a way to grow their business/profile and give back to the community… in short, not just to make their own lives better but to impact the lives of other people too.  Ultimately Oprah, Brad and Angelina, Bono and more, are just as well known for spending their money improving the lives of others as for the fun trinkets and toys they can afford.

8. They don’t think they’re remarkable.

In a world of social media everyone can be their own PR agent. It’s incredibly easy for anyone to blow their own horn and bask in the glow of their insight and accomplishments.  Remarkable entertainers still have to do all of that self-promotion but also accept their success is based on ambition, persistence, and execution… and they also recognize that key mentors, and a huge dose of luck also played a part.  Remarkable entertainers reap the rewards of humility, asking questions, seeking advice, recognizing and praising others…

9. They know that success is fleeting, but dignity and respect last forever.

The most important thing remarkable entertainers provide audiences, other actors they work with, agents and other creative industry professionals- everyone they meet – is dignity and respect.

And so should you, because when you do, everything else follows.

This article was re-written/re-purposed from something I read in Inc. magazine on Remarkable Entrepreneurs.  I think it fits perfectly, don’t you?   Lisa

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