Tag Archives: motivation

A Mid-Week Realization (or Forcing Myself To Run)

Last week, I blogged about my lack of 5Ks in my future and how I felt that was affecting my workouts. That post was in the middle of this past week of workouts and it was what I needed to get my butt back in gear. I was struggling during the beginning of the week because I was having horrible nausea (I’m looking into finding new medications that should help me) but when I wrote that post I was coming to the end of the problem and was able to get back to what I know I should be doing.

Monday’s workout was a power and strength day and it was one of the worst days for my nausea. I was terrified that I would throw up during class and wondered if it would be dangerous to take more medication before I was supposed to (I didn’t, but for me to want to means it was really horrible). Because I was feeling so awful, I only had a goal to get through class and not worry about anything else.

It was a 3 group class and each section of the room had 2 blocks. On the treadmill the first block was increasing 1 minute hills and the second block was 45 second all out paces with front raises with weights in-between each all out. I had to decrease my speed for the entire time because just walking fast was making me feel sick. But I did manage to do what I could and didn’t give up which was all I could ask for.

On the floor, the first block was squats, lunges, and scissor ab work. And the second block was lateral lunges, rotations on the straps, and plank work. Unfortunately, there was a lot of up and down while on the floor and that again made things tough on me. I took time to sit and tried to feel more like myself while I was working because I knew that pushing myself harder wasn’t going to be a good thing for me.

And on the rower, the first block was 200 meter rows with shoulder presses in-between each row. I didn’t look at my rowing time because I knew it was bad. And the last block was a 6 minute row for distance and I ended up taking a break every minute or so to try to feel better. It was a tough class to get through and I tried not to be hard on myself because I know that these were not normal circumstances for me.

Wednesday I was finally starting to feel better and I had the extra motivation of trying to get back to my running. And this class ended up being a run/row switching format so it was a good opportunity to work on my running. It was interesting to switch a couple of times during a run/row, but that allowed me time to rest and recover. There were 3 blocks in the run/row and the first block was .1 mile runs with 200 meter rows. I was able to run every time I had the .1 mile run. The second block was 3 rounds of 30 second intervals, 2 rounds of 45 second intervals, and a 1 minute all out pace to end the block. I ran all the push and all out paces and walked my bases. And the last block was an incline .1 mile run which I ended up doing as a walk because I didn’t feel ok with running on an incline. And the rowing in the last block was 200 meter rows that increased each round.

The floor was a lot of arm work and lunges. The first block was single arm snatches, pop jacks, and lateral lunges. The second block was lunges with weights, upright rows with weights, and crunches. And the last block was rows on the straps, pullovers with weights, and plank work. I felt pretty strong on the floor and only had minor moments of nausea so I was feeling proud of myself. And I did a decent amount of running so that really helped my confidence.

Friday’s workout was a power day so it felt like another perfect opportunity to work on my running. All of the blocks on the treadmill were really short. The longest block we had was 4 minutes but most of them were closer to 3 minutes. The first few blocks started with a push pace that was between 30-90 seconds and then had a base pace and ended with a push pace to an all out pace. I ran all the push and all out paces and walked my bases. This was more what I was used to so I was feeling amazing!

On the floor, we mainly had 1 long block. In that block, we had 3 sections that each had 2 moves in them. We were supposed to do 3 rounds of the 2 moves in that section and then go to the rower to do a 1 minute row for distance. The moves were push ups, skaters, chest presses using the straps, low rows using the straps, lunges, and plank work). I think my rower was having issues because it was telling me I was only doing 40 meters in 1 minute when normal for me is around 200 meters. At the end of the workout, we went over to the rowers to row in the same pattern as the treadmills. It was a 3 minute row for distance and again my rower was having issues with telling me the distance. It ended up saying I did just over 100 meters when I know it was closer to 600. But I was able to row for the 3 minutes without stopping so that was an improvement over the beginning of the week.

I was feeling pretty awesome about my running when I got to Saturday’s class and found out it was an endurance day. Those are tough days for me to work on running, but I was going to do my best. Since it was a 3 group class, I knew I’d only be on the treadmill for about 15 minutes so that helped. The treadmill was distance runs on our own time. We started with a .25 mile run which I was able to run without stopping. Next was supposed to be a .5 mile run and I was going to try to do running intervals. I did about 90 seconds of running before going down to my walk and thought I could get back to running after about a minute. But my legs were feeling like they weighed 1,000 pounds and I ended up walking on an incline to finish it. But I did do it as a .5 mile run/walk and not doing the power walk option of .25 miles.

Next I was on the floor were we had increased rep work. Each round started with 5 burpees (I was so glad my nausea was gone because the burpees would have been horrible otherwise) and then we had squats, push ups, sit ups, and pull ups on the straps. Those other moves started at 10 reps each but went up 5 reps each round we did them. I made it through the 20 rep round before time was called to switch to the rower.

On the rower, we started with an 800 meter row and the row went down 200 meters each time. Between each row we had jumping jacks with a medicine ball. About halfway through the time on the rower, things switched to be squats with the medicine ball between each row. I was able to do my 800 and 600 meter rows without stopping and the only reason my 400 meter row had a break was to learn about what the new move was going to be in-between the rowing.

While this past week of workouts got off to a tough start, it ended on a pretty great note. I had 3 decent days of running including running .25 miles without a walking break. It wasn’t that long ago that running that distance without walking seemed impossible and I was able to just jump back into doing that. Hopefully I can figure out some more motivation for my running and I can figure out better ways to handle my nausea so this doesn’t become an issue for a week each month.

Rethinking Being A Warrior (or Refocusing On My Word For The Year)

I’ve talked about how my word for the year this year is “Warrior“. It’s a strong and powerful word and I’m very glad that I chose it this year. It meant a lot to me to have it as my word at the beginning of the year when I was preparing to have a major surgery. When the surgery was cancelled, I didn’t immediately think about how the word warrior was going to change in my mindset. But recently someone asked me about my warrior bracelet and why I had it.

I explained how it was my word for the year and how I was planning on being a warrior through my surgery, but that was cancelled. They asked me if it was still my word for the year and I told them yes. But later I was thinking about how I want to be a warrior for the rest of this year since I’m not focused on recovering from surgery.

I guess I never really thought about how I should readjust my thoughts for being a warrior. It wasn’t all about my liver, but honestly a majority was about it. And that’s not really something I’m focused on anymore.

I’m still being a warrior for my liver. I’ve got my next scan in the fall and I want my tumors to be even smaller! That’s the best thing I could ask for and I’m doing everything I can (which really isn’t much) to try to make that happen. I’m working on my visualization every day, I’m not drinking since that puts stress on your liver, and I’m now taking some supplements that help with liver health. I know I can’t really fight for my liver to get better, but I think that I’m doing the best that I can to be as close to fighting for my liver now.

And I’m still a warrior in my workouts. I’m trying to run more, but I’ve been having some setbacks lately. I’m lifting heavier weights when I can and I’m trying to not let my mind tell me that my body can’t do something. It’s tough not to be frustrated when I don’t make the progress I think I should be making, but maybe being kind to myself is also being a warrior for myself in a way. But I’m still hoping that this year will be a good year for me making progress in my workouts.

I guess you can also say that I’m being a warrior in online dating. Part of me being a warrior with dating is catching cheaters and calling them out on it (and telling their wives/girlfriends so at least they can find out). That’s not something I would have done before this year. I’ve been the other woman before and I didn’t tell his girlfriend that he was dating me too. I didn’t feel like it was my place to do that and I kind of regret it. But I’m also being a warrior by putting myself out there and trying online dating again when I’ve been burned in the past. It’s not easy doing it, but I do want to find someone and this is one of the few ways I know I can do that.

But all this reflection has made me think about where I’m lacking in trying to be a warrior. As much progress as I’ve made with my eating disorder, I haven’t been fighting as hard as I should have toward recovery. I’ve made some great steps and I know that they are helping me build good habits that I need to make recovery a possibility for me. But I also know where I’ve been slacking and ignoring some warning signs that I need to work harder. I don’t need to get into specifics, but just know that I know I’ve been doing things that aren’t helping me and I haven’t cared enough to try to change those. It isn’t something that I can just turn on or off, but hopefully awareness and admitting that I haven’t been doing great will help get me a bit more on track.

And the other thing that has been less than warrior like is related to something that is a warrior thing. Because I’ve been going full force into online dating, I’ve been prioritizing others over myself. If I’m chatting with a guy and he wants to meet up for a drink or coffee, I’ll rearrange my schedule to make myself available because I’m scared that if I can’t meet him then that he will move on and I will miss my chance. That has happened to me before, but I shouldn’t be in fear of that. If a guy can’t wait a little longer to meet me because I have a busy schedule, then I shouldn’t want to meet him. But I’m still in fear that whoever I meet will be the last person who will like me and I need to get over that.

Every time that I’ve been scared that I will never find someone who wants to go out with me, I meet another guy and that cycle happens again. I don’t get dates as often as I probably would like, but going out with someone every other week or so isn’t that bad. It’s significantly better than what I was doing before I put myself out there. And I need to be more focused on fitting someone into my life instead of rearranging my life to fit someone else.

I don’t know how to phrase it properly, but in essence I need to be a warrior for myself first and foremost. That’s the most important thing. I can be a warrior for myself in fitness and health but I also need to be a warrior for my emotional wellbeing and my life. I don’t have to let someone else’s schedule dictate mine or wait for a text or phone call to find out what the plans will be that night. I don’t want to be the girl sitting at home waiting for the guy to let her know what’s going on. I need to put my life and what I want to do first and hope that I can find someone who will either join me or will fit in. Or at least someone who makes plans with me in advance so I can schedule around it.

It’s going to be tough for me not to prioritize others, but I know that doing that will make me happier. And if I’m happier and doing more of what I want to do instead of waiting for others to make plans with me, that will make me a better person and hopefully someone more fun for a guy to date.

I usually don’t focus this much on if I want to alter how I think of my word of the year in the middle of the year, but I think it was necessary this year. It’s not that the word of the year took a backseat after my surgery cancelled, but I didn’t take the energy I was focusing on getting through the surgery and put it toward other things once that wasn’t needed anymore. Hopefully now I can make the second half of this year even more powerful and more warrior like.

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Working On Being A Warrior (or Something To Remind Me)

I had set my word for the year to be warrior. I’m really proud of choosing that to be my word. It has a really strong meaning to me and there is a good visual in my head when I think about being a warrior. And it has a lot of different meanings as well so I can apply it to so many parts of my life. I know I’ve been a warrior in the past, but I really wanted to focus on it this year because I know I have a couple of tough things coming up. And being a warrior will help me get through it all.

As I have each year that I’ve picked a word of the year, I made the word the background on my computer. I also have set the background to my phone and iPad to be a similar pattern so it reminds me of the word as well. But even though I have those as reminders on a daily basis, I don’t think I’ve been applying myself to be a warrior as much as I could be. I don’t always see the background of my computer since I’m working so much. I usually have a ton of windows open so I’m not getting the reminder as often as I have in the past.

When I’ve been going through tough times, I’ve been starting to look at myself as a victim which I really want to try to avoid. I know I’m not a victim. I’m very lucky with so many things in my life. When things are bad, I do need to focus on the good and to remember how hard I’ve been working for everything that I have. And that is a big part of what a warrior is all about.

In the membership group for the Inside Acting Podcast, we have a forum about our words of the year and someone had sent me a link to some necklaces that had some words I was considering but didn’t pick for this year. I liked them, but it got me thinking that I should find something that says warrior on it to remind me of what I am trying to be this year.

And that search got me to the Mantra Band website and seeing their warrior bracelet! It’s a pretty simple bracelet and will go nicely with the jewelry that I wear on a regular basis (which is a necklace and a watch). I got the bracelet in silver which matches my other jewelry, but I love so many of the other sayings on other bracelets that I might get one of the other ones in rose gold.

It is such a simple and beautiful bracelet and I know that I will remember to try to be a warrior at all times when I’m wearing it. It will be a nice reminder for me to work on what I set out to do this year and to not let myself feel too down about things when there are so many other things going my way. I’ve had one other motivational bracelet before (it says positivity on it), but this one has a very strong meaning to me.

I’m really glad that I found this bracelet and ordered it (and it got to me 2 days after I ordered it online!). I’ve needed something to remind me more often of my word for the year, and this is the perfect way to do it!

I’m sure this sounds like I was paid to say all these nice things about Mantra Band, but I really did just randomly find them online and placed an order. I didn’t get my bracelet for free or with any discount and they didn’t ask me to write a blog post about them. But when I find a company I love, I have to share all about them!

If you want to order a warrior bracelet or one of their other items, you can go to this link to get 5% off an order (full disclosure, I get points towards earning discounts in the future if you use my link). Hopefully you can find something that motivates you to be the best, most positive, and most productive person! I know that my warrior bracelet has given me that boost and I am so grateful for that!

Guess I Motivated Myself (or No More Feeling Stuck)

Last week I posted about feeling a bit stuck with my progress in running. It’s hard not to be frustrated with a plateau, and that’s exactly what I was feeling. I didn’t like feeling that way, so I guess putting it out there in my blog post motivated me to do something about it. This week I had some really great progress and I was able to continue to feel motivated and to do more than I really thought I could.

Monday’s workout was a run/row, but some of the run segments were a bit longer than I can do. When we were supposed to run .3 miles, I ran for 90 seconds (instead of the 60 seconds I usually do) and then walked until I got to .2 miles (I did in between what we were supposed to do as a runner and as a walker). Those 90 seconds weren’t easy, but I got through them and I felt so accomplished after that. The next run segment was .25 miles, which I know I can do. Again, this wasn’t easy, but it helped me remember that I’ve done this before and I could do it again. I did this .25 miles a bit slower than I have in the past, so that meant that this was the longest time I’ve run yet!

1:4 Mile

After doing that long run, I wasn’t able to fully run the last segments which were .2 and .15 miles. I was able to run a majority of those, but I know if I hadn’t pushed myself to do the .25 miles as a run I could have run those as well. Our rowing was between 150-300 meters, and since they were fast I did take some time between the treadmill and rower to catch my breath and prepare myself for the next thing I had to do. Overall, this was one of my best running days yet!

Once I got to the floor, I felt like I had already done a full workout, but I tried my best to continue to motivate myself to do more. We had a lot of upper body work with the straps and push-ups and we finished with abs (after which I was barely able to sit up). I surprised myself by how much I was able to do as well as how little pain I was in after class. Not hurting is a good sign and I know I was doing the right thing that day.

Wednesday was an endurance day, and we didn’t get to switch between blocks. I knew the treadmill work would be a tough day, but I was trying to focus on how far I could get the distance to be on the treadmill. My dream is to eventually get the treadmill to make it to 2 miles in class when we don’t switch, but I’m not quite there yet.

The endurance work has been the hardest for me to do with my running, but I was not going to make excuses for myself. When we had 3 minute push paces, instead of walking the entire thing since I know I can’t run the entire thing, I ran half of it and walked the second half. So for every 3 minute push, I ran for 90 seconds. I did the same thing for the 2 minute push paces. I can run for 2 minutes, but I was feeling really tired so I wanted to pace myself. I’m happy with how much running I did in those long pushes instead of just walking. And of course, as I’ve been doing for a while, I ran all of the all outs.

When the treadmill block was done, I shut down my treadmill and was pretty impressed with what my distance had been in class.

Endurance Day

I wish I had noticed when I reached 1.55 miles because that is half of a 5K, but I missed seeing that. But I know that my speed is up so my times are getting better and better.

For the second half of class, we had some sprint rows of 300 meters, arm work on the straps, squats using the Bosu, and ab work. Again, it was another workout that I was exhausted at the end of, but there was very little pain so I considered it a big success.

Friday was another run/row day, and this time I was able to run all of the distances we had to do! We had to do .2 and .15 miles each time (there was also a .1 segment but I didn’t make it down the list that far in the time we had). I ran every single time and didn’t do any walking except to cool down a bit after the run. When I added up everything that I ran, I did .85 miles of running. Of course, this wasn’t non-stop, but I still think that that’s pretty amazing!

The rows between the treadmill time were between 100-200 meters so they were pretty fast, but I was taking a lot of time in between to catch my breath and to let my heart rate get down a bit (it was super high all during class). I didn’t take it easy during the floor work where we had to do lots of arm work (I worked with 25 pound weights), burpees, plank jacks, and hop overs. It was another exhausting but worth it workout.

I think I got myself out of my slump. I just needed to put it out there how I was feeling to realize that I was in control of my progress and I could take it to the next level. I wrote about 3 workouts last week, but technically last week was a 4 workout week. But the 4th workout is going to be its own post, because I attended the 1 hour run class at Orangetheory for the first time! And trust me, that is worthy of being its own post!

Hard Time At The Hard Rock Cafe 5K (or At Least I Looked Awesome!)

This past Saturday was the Hard Rock Cafe 5K (this year they also had a 10K, but I wasn’t going to do a 10K). It was my 3rd year doing this race and I was really excited to be doing the race again this year. And even more exciting, my friend Kate flew down to LA for the weekend to do the race with me (more about our weekend adventures tomorrow).

I wish I could tell you that I killed it at the race and everything went amazing. But sadly, that wasn’t the case.

I’m not 100% sure what happened, but things seemed weird starting the night before. As I was going to bed, I said to Kate how it didn’t feel like the night before a race. Maybe it’s because someone was sleeping in my living room. Maybe it was because I hadn’t gone to the bib pickup that day to get all my race stuff (Kate and I were going to pick our race things up on Saturday morning).

On race day, I was up at 4:30am and we were out the door by 5:15. Traffic was light so we got to the Hard Rock Cafe nice and early. We got our race stuff, went back down to my car in the parking structure, and got ready. Once it was closer to 6am, we went back up to the street to warm up and make sure we had good spots in the starting area so Kate could avoid the walkers and I could be out-of-the-way for the runners.

Hard Rock Cafe

And of course, we had to take a pre-race photo together.

Pre Race Photo

Kate went up to the front of the pack after that and I hung back and tried to relax and not stress out about the race. While I was waiting for the race to start, I managed to make a few new friends because of the awesome tank top I was wearing that day (hi Susie!!). The race was supposed to start at 7am, but we ended up starting closer to 7:15am.

Right from the beginning, things didn’t feel right to me. My legs were stiff from waiting so long for the start of the race and I was feeling pain in my shins and calf starting at the half mile mark. As much as I wanted to push myself, I was struggling. I checked out my tracking app on my phone at the 1 mile marker and saw that the first mile was about 30 seconds slower than what my mile time was at my PR.

At that point, I realized it would be pretty impossible to make up that time plus be 30 seconds faster on the next two miles, so I stopped trying to push as hard and decided to just focus on finishing without having to take a break.

Right after that realization, Kate was passing me going back toward the finish line. She was having a tough race as well (but she ended up placing 4th in our division, 7th in women, and 41st in the entire race).

The rest of the race seemed to take a while. I tried to focus on the streets going by and knowing that I will be done with the race soon enough. My race photos are all pretty serious looking since I was so focused.

Race Time

As I was almost at the finish line, I saw Kate hanging out there waiting for me to finish. She walked next to me for the last minute and we both were sharing how we had pretty bad race days. I crossed the finish line about 90 seconds slower than my PR (I split the different between my time at the Hard Rock Cafe 5K last year and the Hollywood Half 5K in April).

Even though I didn’t PR, I still got my amazing medal!

Post Race Selfie

After the race, Kate and I got breakfast at the Hard Rock Cafe and I got one last photo on the stairs to the Dolby theater to celebrate completing my race.

Oscar Stairs

As soon as I got home, I added my newest medal to my wall (which is starting to look very full now).

Medal Hanger

Even though the race wasn’t great for me, I did it and I didn’t finish last (which is something that I am terrified of doing one day). I’m so proud of Kate for how well she finished in the race and I’m glad that neither of us really gave up.

While I love my race medal (it’s so sparkly!), my favorite thing from the race was the shirt that I wore! I ordered a tank top from Mighty Petunia after doing a random google search for motivational tank tops. So many motivational tank tops are silly and cheesy, but I love the messages that are on the Mighty Petunia tanks. They are fun and I am already picking out which ones I want next! And I got a ton of compliments on it at the race.

Since I loved my Mighty Petunia tank top so much, Cathy (who is the owner of Mighty Petunia) has given me a promo code to share with all of you! If you buy something from their site, use the promo code “Bombshell” and you’ll get 10% off of your order. And the shirts are so reasonably priced already so the 10% off is just icing on the cake! I hope that you guys will take advantage of the discount and support this great business!

While my race day wasn’t great, I managed to find ways to keep a somewhat positive mindset and was able to focus on the things that made me happy (like my tank top and the medal I got at the finish line). My next 5K is in April and while I’m hoping I’ll PR at that race, I just want to have a more positive race experience and I’ll be happy.

No More Slacking (or Paying Attention To My Fitbit)

I have a confession to make. I have not been doing my 10,000 steps a day lately. This all started when I lost my Fitbit. When I didn’t have it, it was pretty much impossible to get my steps in for the day (my phone counts my steps, but I don’t always have my phone with me). I started to not really look at my Fitbit app, even when I got my replacement. There were plenty of days where I looked at the app first thing in the morning (to turn off the sleep tracker) and didn’t look at it again until bedtime (to turn on the sleep tracker). I didn’t look at how many steps I was getting in for the day, but I know that I was not getting close to my goal.

I was in such a habit of not thinking about getting in my steps that I wasn’t doing them. The only 10,000 step day I had since getting my replacement was when I was at Disneyland. It’s pretty easy to get in my steps there. I average 3,000 steps in an Orangetheory workout, but I wasn’t doing the work to do the other 7,000 steps.

But on Monday, I had my workout early in the morning (and got about 3,000 steps in) and with all the games in my improv class and walking around doing errands I got another 2,000 steps in. So I decided that it was time to start taking charge again and making sure I do my best effort to get to my goals each day.

Fitbit

I managed to get my 10,000 steps in on Monday. And yesterday, I was back at my old routine of doing steps in place before work while catching up on my DVR. And I got my 10,000 steps in again.

I’m really hoping that this will be the start of the trend of hitting my step goals. When I first got my Fitbit, I was obsessed with not missing my goal every day. I remember the first time I missed my step goal and how upset I was. But since I’ve lost my Fitbit and have had a couple of weeks where I didn’t get my step goal, I’m much calmer about this all. Of course, I want to reach my goal every day, but if it doesn’t happen it doesn’t happen. It’s not the end of the world.

I’m not sure how much getting my steps in helps my weight loss efforts, but I know that it can’t hurt. And the more healthy routines that I can build into my life and don’t have to really think about, the better.

I think part of the motivation that got me back into my steps was the fact that I was invited to be a part of a bunch of step challenges this week. I don’t care if I win, but I want to at least try to be in the top half of the challengers.

So, thank you to my friends who invited me to a challenge this week. Because of you all, I’m back on track.

Another Meeting of Mentees (Social Hour and Not Business Hour)

On Monday after my epic doctor afternoon we had another meeting of the mentees of my Women In Film mentoring group. I was really happy that the meeting was that evening because it gave me something to look forward to while nervous about all the pain from the medical stuff. And I tried to focus on that while in the middle of each thing (sometimes focus can help me not pass out with shots, but it’s not a guarantee).

This meeting ended up being a bit small. We try to figure out when a majority of the group can make it, but everyone is really busy and with all of us being creative types sometimes last-minute schedule conflicts come up. But even with a small group, we still get what we need out of the group.

We started as a more social gathering than anything else, but that’s maybe because we were waiting to see who else might be coming. Once we realized that everyone who could be there was there, we went around the group sharing what we had done over the past few weeks since our last meeting with our mentors.

Sometimes when we do that, I feel a bit pathetic. It always seems like everyone else has amazing updates while I just have my same old things to say. And I know that it’s because many of the other women in the group (and almost everyone who made it this Monday) are writers so they are able to control their work a bit more than I can. They can always start a new script while it’s not as easy for me to find a new project to act in or put together my own project.

My updates are pretty simple but even with the little things, my fellow mentees are very excited for me. They love that I won my delegate seat for the SAG-AFTRA Convention and that I’ll be there all weekend this weekend (I’ll share some posts about that next week). And I told them a bit about the blogger conference I was at recently and how I think that will improve my blog in the long run. Their excitement about my baby steps makes me feel better about what I’ve gotten done.

After we all went around and shared our updates, gave advice, and cheered each other on; we were back in social mode. I know I keep saying this, but I love that we’ve gotten to become friends and we can have a lot of fun at our gatherings. It doesn’t feel like there’s ever pressure to impress each other (even though I put that pressure on myself) and I feel more like I’m spending the evening with friends instead of a networking/goal accomplishing group. I think the best goal accomplishing groups are made of friends, and I love that we have organically become that.

It makes me wish that I had made a bit more effort with the 2 girls who showed up regularly with my original mentoring group. I think that if I had tried a bit more, we could have created something great among ourselves even if our fellow mentees didn’t come to meetings or we didn’t have regular meetings with our mentors. But knowing that I can do this now motivates me to continue doing this in the future.

I know that my current mentee group is going to continue meeting after the official mentoring time is done. At our next mentee meeting, I think we are going to set up the plans for how we want to keep this going for the long run. I’m glad that everyone else seems to be on the same page as me, because every time I meet with these women I feel more and more grateful that I was placed in a group with such like-minded women and that they have encouraged me to better myself without pushing me or making me feel less than.

Hearing Some Non-Nonsense Advice (or A Substitute Mentor)

I had my next Women In Film mentoring circle meeting with my mentors this week. This meeting is different from the potluck dinner last month because our mentors were there to give us advice and help guide us in our careers.

One of the two mentors I have wasn’t able to make it for the meeting, but our mentors arranged to have a substitute mentor on hand so that we would still have 2 mentors at the meeting. I thought that that was a very nice gesture and really appreciated it.

We were missing a couple of fellow mentees at the meeting, but a majority of us were able to make it. And since we had a substitute mentor there, we spent the beginning of the meeting going around and telling her about our careers and the goals that we set 2 months ago and that we have long-term.

I’m very embarrassed to say that I didn’t do so great with my goals I set 2 months ago. One of them was to get through the film festival, so that one I did accomplish. But the one I really wanted to work on was saving money so I could get back into improv classes. I was really hoping to have about a quarter of the money that I need by now (or more), but I was also hoping to have more luck finding a secondary day job.

I know that I can ask for the money for the class for my birthday, so no matter what I will have the money by August. But hopefully I can have enough money together that I can register for the class by my next meeting with my mentors in 2 months.

As we were going around the circle talking about our goals, our guest mentor was pretty tough on us and not accepting any excuses we had about why we didn’t get our goals done. She was encouraging me to attend casting director workshops (I personally don’t believe in the ones that you have to pay for and she respected my opinion on that). She also said that while I love my agents, perhaps I need to find agents that get me out more often. I completely understand where she is coming from with that idea, but I know that I’m pretty much going out as often as my direct competition does. And I doubt that new agents would work with me as much as my current agents do.

But hearing that tough love did motivate me to do more for myself. My agents do work hard for me, but I can make their job easier. Besides getting into the improv class, I really need to update my reel. I also am going to continue working on my networking with casting directors and writers. The more people who know me, the better.

While I did disagree with some of the ideas that the guest mentor had for me, so much of what she was saying was exactly what I needed to hear. Even when she was talking to my fellow mentees about how they need to stop making excuses and being victims of their circumstance, I took that to heart. I can’t force anyone to give me more auditions, but I can make it so I’m a more desirable actress for casting directors to want to bring in. And that’s how I need to focus myself on my career.

While I think that both of my regular mentors are amazing and are so generous with their time and their advice, I’m a little sad that our guest mentor won’t be at the next meeting to check in with all of us. Maybe I’ll run into her at another event in the future and I can have an amazing career update to give to her!

The SAG Awards (or I Am An Actor)

We are in the middle of awards season. The Golden Globes already happened and the Academy Awards are coming up.

And in the middle are the SAG Awards.

As I’ve mentioned before, this is my first year getting to vote since I only joined the union prior to the merger last year. I loved getting to have the opportunity to see pretty much all the nominated films (I still haven’t finished all my iTunes rentals and have about a week left to try to see them).

It was very exciting to see the winners, and I was very happy when the people/projects I voted for won. Also, my friend Woody was one of the producers this year and I got to see his name in the credits at the end.

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Besides enjoying watching the winners and all the fun fashion (I’m looking forward to “Fashion Police” tonight), my favorite part of the SAG Awards is at the very beginning.

A couple of actors are chosen to share their story a bit. Some of them are silly and a bit made up, but others are serious. I loved how Hal Holbrook shared that he took a drama class because there was no homework.

What was really nice this year is that during the acceptance speeches, several actors talked about how they got into the union.

Jennifer Lawrence said how she got in after doing a commercial for MTV’s “My Super Sweet Sixteen”. Ben Affleck mentioned that he got his card in 1986 (I learned at one of the screenings I went to that he got it doing an afterschool special).

It’s always nice to be reminded that the Jennifer Lawrence’s and Ben Affleck’s of the world started somewhere.

It reminds me of a quote I once saw on Pinterest: Don’t compare your page 1 to someone else’s page 20.

This is great advice for all parts of my life! I might only be on page 1 now, but I’m excited to turn the pages of my life and make it to page 20!

Alternative Motivation (or Why Can’t I Transfer My Dedication From One Area to Another)

On Friday evening, I attended the Actors’ Network annual holiday party. I love this holiday party! It’s a great mix of industry types and I always run into people who I don’t see as often as I’d like.

I haven’t been able to go to many Actors’ Network events since starting my new day job in May. Most events are between 1 and 7:30pm and I pretty much always working then. I plan on attending more events when I’m (f)unemployed soon.

As I was chatting with a friend who I hadn’t seen in almost a year, we were discussing what had been keeping us busy. I mentioned this blog, and they asked me about it. I said how I just recently passed 100 blog posts and they commented on how motivated and dedicated I must be.

I always have thought of myself as someone who needs more motivation in life. If I was a motivated person, I shouldn’t have a weight issue. I would be motivated to eat better and exercise more.

But the more I thought about it, it’s true that I’m really motivated.

I’m motivated to write every day here, and I’m super happy about that. I love thinking of what to write about and what you will all think about it.

I’m also really motivated in my job, which is good.

I’m motivated to keep acting. I know that one day I’ll “make it” and it will all be worth it.

I’m motivated to watch my favorite tv shows even when I’m tired (this might not be the best one, but it’s true).

I just can’t find the motivation all the time for my health. I don’t know what the block is in my brain. I want to do it, but I can’t seem to do it. I don’t know if I’ve convinced myself that I don’t have enough time/energy/whatever to do it. But now that someone else has made me realize that I do have a motivated personality, I’m going to work on figuring it out.