I was channel surfing between the quarters on Sunday and happened to see Meryl Streep doing an interview on a talk show. Could I respect an actress more than this great lady?! So I stopped channel surfing for a moment and dropped in on her interview.
Meryl was talking about her role as the Iron Lady, Margaret Thatcher. She acknowledged the fortitude of Thatcher and all politicians for the ability to deal with the constant negativity that was thrown at them. She also said it was the hardest role she had ever played.
And…. and this was the AND I needed to hear… Meryl Streep said that she got nervous when she walked on the set for the movie.
Thank you, Meryl Streep! I’m free!! You have freed me from my Anxious Annie Critter that attacked me just days earlier. It was a major mental maelstrom and I hadn’t had one of those in years.
Then I remembered that Katherine Hepburn always got nervous before a performance. And Barbara Streisand said she went through the same thing! Knowing that I’m not alone and that it’s not just me that hit those slippery slopes, helped a lot.
But here’s the rub, as Shakespeare would say – If I’m nervous, that’s one thing. Entertaining self-defeating thoughts is another!
So my goal for the next time I have to do filming (which is in the very near future) is that even if I get nervous…
- Acknowledge the nervousness
- Recognize it for what it is
- Release all self-deprecating thoughts!
- Take a deep breath and visualize the positive outcome I intend
- Do whatever I need to do to have that outcome happen (which is usually to ‘over’ study)
I did everything except number 3 last time and it is that third one that sent me into a downward spiral. So I’m on my game again. I’ve learned something very powerful as I return to weeding my mental garden with more commitment to the process than ever before!