How Studying Acting Prepares You for Life (Guest Blog)

“Discover your authenticity, and show that to the world,” acting coach Bernard Hiller writes

I believe there is no training in the world that will prepare you for a better life than studying acting. None.

You see the techniques and principles you are taught in class are exactly the skills you need for a successful life.

Here are a few of the benefits to taking a great acting class.

1. In acting, you are taught to ask yourself many questions. Like, “Who are you in this scene?” In life, you need to know who are you as well.

2. What do I want? Everybody needs to know what they want. In what dynamic way are you going to get what you want?

3. Why is this person doing or saying this? Why are you doing or speaking the way you do?

4. Another question is, Why is the other person behaving like this? Understanding other people’s motivations teaches you to have empathy for your fellow man.

5. Acting also teaches you one of the most important skills that you need to have. It’s the ability to listen. In life, having great listening skills comes in very handy. The better you listen, the better you can respond.

6. You also learn to concentrate on people’s body language. If you want to know what someone is truly feeling. Watch their body, because the body never lies.

7. You have to connect with your emotions and express your feelings. So many people have big problems with this. Your feelings inform you of your needs, sadness and desires. Express them.

8. You need to choose positive choices to further your character’s needs. When you make positive choices your life moves forward. Being positive is so important.

9. Discover your authenticity, and show that to the world. All the actors I have worked with — from stars, to artists who are working in this town know that being authentic is the key. If you want to succeed in life you must be your authentic self. An acting class can help you uncover this.

10.  To be able to perform, you must face your fears. When you first become an actor, fear is always telling you that you are not good enough. Overcoming your fears let’s you discover your power. Only by doing the things that scare you will you be able to take your next step.

11. Find your voice. Being heard and understood in life is crucial.

12. You need to be vulnerable. To have a successful scene you must be willing to expose your inner self. Having a meaningful, joyful and authentic life, you must be vulnerable. As Brene Brown once said, “What makes you vulnerable makes you beautiful.”