March 28, 2024

Ep #11: How To Handle Disappointment as a Performer

As artists and performers, disappointment is a part of the gig. You aren’t going to land every role or crush every performance. However, the way you handle disappointment is totally up to you, and feeling disappointed doesn’t have to mean anything about you as a performer.

Disappointment feels painful for many reasons, but a big one is because you aren’t prepared for it, and you don’t have any control over it. So, on today’s show, I’m encouraging you to expect disappointment to come up for you on this journey, and decide how you want to bounce back.

Tune in this week to discover a new way to handle disappointment as a performer. You’ll learn how disappointment can impact your confidence, why not being cast for a role doesn’t need to mean anything about you as a performer, and what you can do to grow from your disappointment on this journey.

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What You will discover:

  • Some of the unhelpful thought patterns that come up when we’re feeling disappointed.
  • Why you have the power to decide how to feel, and how quickly you want to bounce back.
  • 2 things you can do to start moving through feelings of disappointment.
  • How to process your disappointment by truly feeling the feelings.
  • What you can do to anticipate disappointment and gain control over this feeling moving forward.
  • How to allow your disappointment to serve you in your future as a performer.

Listen to the full Episode:

Featured on the Show:

Full Episode Transcript:


Welcome to The Confident Performer, the only podcast that guides ambitious, driven performers and entrepreneurs to show up authentically and confidently both on and off stage. If you are ready to make an impact in your life and community and start living your most amazing, empowered life, you are in the right place. You already have what it takes to make it, you just need to see it. And I’m here to show you how. You ready? Let’s go.

Well, hello beautiful my performers, and welcome to episode 11 of The Confident Performer. Today I want to talk about being disappointed. Disappointment is all part of being in the entertainment industry and being an aspiring or existing or operating performer. I want that to be very, very clear, very apparent. And I want you to be so good at handling disappointment and not letting it mean anything negative about you. We talked in previous episodes about being delusional.

This information can absolutely pertain to you if you are potentially in the delusional land. But really, this is for those working performers, those industry performers that are ready to level up, are ready to increase the nature of their game and raise the bar on what they’re capable of doing. And really, take the feedback that they’re provided if they are provided feedback. Sometimes we never get the feedback from certain auditions, we never know why we didn’t get cast.

So our brain will go into the space of creating reasons or potentials or sometimes even worse. Will have a group of friends that we all kind of end up being in the same type and auditioning for the same thing and they will give information, “Well, I heard they were actually doing this or I heard they were actually going in this direction.” And sometimes that information is true and sometimes it’s subjective. It’s all kind of how they took that information.

But in today's episode I really want to focus on the aspect of expecting disappointment in this journey. Now, I have talked so much about being in control of all the things that we want to be in control of. Now, the power is yours to determine how you feel about these things and how quickly you bounce back. I have known a number of artists that quickly bounced back. It is literally all part of the game, the disappointment is no big deal. They don’t even remain disappointed. They remain moderately bummed for a day, and then they wake up and move on.

I’m kind of in that maybe one to two day bummed range, that was a bummer if something doesn’t end up happening. So if there was an exciting show and I was a potential part in that or I was called to potentially do a workshop of that show. And then the dates get pushed back or they don’t end up happening or whatever that type of thing is. I do get bummed and I’m like, “Man, that bummed me out because I was looking forward to it.” 

But one of the things I’m going to reference to do today is a couple of the things that we can do to move through that. But really focusing on the expectation of the disappointment being there, how to process it, what to do and how to continue to move forward. Here we go.

So first and foremost, for my people right now who will have already put into go to certain schools and have auditioned and really put a lot of hard work and effort into getting into amazing programs across the country. You can think of some of the best schools that you applied to. And your heart may be set on a few of those, well, I’d really love to get into Pace, or I’d really love to get into Webster or NYU or whatever it may be that your brain has kind of focused on and applied for and worked toward, auditioned. Has been kind of previewed and seen and all of that.

And then you get your acceptance letter, those are happening right now. So those acceptance letters where you’re like, “Hey, you’re in.” “Hey, it’s a no for us.” “Hey, you’re waitlisted.” I want you first and foremost, to feel the feelings of disappointment. I want you to process the information of, oh, man, I was kind of bummed, kind of bummed I didn’t get into that school. And I want you to think about what you can do about that going forward anytime there is nothing that you can do.

So if you know, okay, I got a no from this place. And there’s really nothing I can do. There’s no option to re-audition or there’s no, hey, invitation back, that they’ve just passed on you. That’s no big deal. And I really look at it as, hey, that’s no big deal. You can be as upset as you want to be for as long as you want to be. But I promise you this podcast is intended to make you feel more confident, more happy, more content, more satisfied overall being an industry performer and trying for things and falling and failing or flailing.

And really what it does feel like as well to kind of have the success and what to do with that success. So when we are disappointed and we do get those no’s, hey, no, sorry you didn’t get into this college, you didn’t get this job. I want you to feel those feelings. Now, if you have the luck, the goodness, good fortune, the opportunity to get feedback, or you have access to the person who made the decision and it’s something they don’t mind having a conversation with you.

I would love for you to be able to pursue that route and say, “Hey, I know we see one another often and I’m kind of on this audition circuit and you know me very well. Can I get some feedback? Maybe what was creative looking for that I wasn’t able to do, or programming wise, what were you looking for in the program this year that didn’t align with me?” Now, some of those things, you’ll get feedback and you’ll, “Hey, we didn’t need people of that type. We needed more people who are able to do this or more boys or more guys”, or whatever it may be.

And that’s very fair and great information and we just take that, put it in the knapsack and move on. But if they do give you feedback and they do say, “Hey, honestly, we love your voice, but you kind of have this thing where you come across really insecure and we’re looking for some people who are really more confident in who they are and who they are as a performer. And we’re looking for that particular artist right now.”

“Okay, great, thank you so much for that information. Really quick, do you have any tips on how I can maybe come across better or how I can maybe come across more confident and what do you recommend I do? What would you like to see more of?” And some people will say, “Really, that’s all the kind of feedback I have, good luck to you in your future”, whatever, beat it, kid, scram. Or someone can actually say, “Oh, honestly, I’d love to see, I don’t know, I’d love to see you really knowing and understanding.”

We talked about type, understanding your type, understanding that you are going to be more of a sweet, beautiful, young Anjani, but you don’t necessarily always have to play every single role the same way or whatever their information is. You just take it and you say, “Okay, thank you so much for that feedback.” Now, when you listen to that feedback, that is a collection of information. You can choose to do whatever you want with the information. It’s the same thing with anybody giving you any opinion, any advice, the same thing as this, heck.

And I’m giving you information, giving you opinions saying, “Hey, you can do this, you can try this. It can make you feel better. It may make your life easier. Try it, if it doesn’t work for you, try harder but other than that, I really think don’t hesitate to listen and make the adjustments.” Now, I want to come to this part of life that I think is my favorite part when I say, “Don’t let it mean anything about you.”

So the fact that you didn’t get into the school that you wanted to or that you didn’t get into one of your top schools or that you didn’t get the part that you wanted, there are so many factors in that, so many factors. And I can’t even tell you from start to finish, from creation to the fruition of whatever the material is to the actual performance, to the actual casting, all of it. There’s so much that goes into it. So you don’t get the job, you don’t get in. Don’t let it mean anything negative about you. Don’t let it mean, dude, you suck. You are a trash performer and you should never do this again. Don’t let it mean that.

Decide to think, you know what? I’m going to see what I can do about feedback. Gain that, collect that. You know what? They said I can do this better. I know I’m not the strongest dancer when it comes to certain things. So I’m not going to come in for a complete dance show and then be super curious why I didn’t do so well. I know that if I want to be a better dancer, I need to take some more dance classes. That is the bottom line. So then you do those things that create those kind of stair steps to the part of the goals that you wish to reach and really raise and level up the game.

But I’d encourage you to not let it mean anything negative about you. I want you to think about the part of life where you continue to say, okay, maybe you didn’t get cast 10 times in a row. What do you do then? What do you do then? Does your brain say, “Hey, you need to really realign with what your training is, what is going on with you.” And I always encourage all my performers, do not get down on yourself. If you are in a part of your life or a point in your life where you are not training A game status, if you’re not training A game.

If you’re not training anywhere from three to four hours a day in vocal performance, in dance or character work, in overall industry standards of how to market yourself. And there’s so many different ways to do that now. Thank you, YouTube, thank you, all of these amazing platforms like Instagram and TikTok and different things like that. So there are so many different ways to do things now that we didn’t really have in the past in the industry when I was starting. It was word of mouth. It was very much that kind of hustle culture.

And I have a few friends who are stunt performers. That’s what it’s called. That kind of hustling is set, and we’ll have some of those performers and artists and brilliant stunt performers on in the future because they’re my faves. And I just want to talk to them about that part of the industry. But I want you to really think, if you’re not training A game status, what are you doing? And if you’re like, “Man, I’m so bummed. I’m just 10 in a row, I mean, I’m not any good. I don’t even know what’s wrong with me.”

But you wake up, you walk around your apartment or your house and you kind of maybe Netflix a little bit, you kind of have some coffee. Get up and you don’t think, you’re like, “Yeah, I’ll skip the gym today or I have my thing with my coach today, but I’m probably not going to go. I think I’m just going to walk around the mall.” I can’t even, I’m trying to imagine what people actually do because my brain’s never worked like that. So I do know that the information that I hear from some of my clients where I say, “What do you do? What did you do?” “Oh, well, I did.”

So I’m kind of infusing a little bit of that energy, but in truth, I don’t know that energy. I like to focus on all the different things I can do to enhance and change my life. But I want you to ask yourself if you are not getting your parts, you are not getting the things that you auditioned for. I want you to ask yourself if you are training the way that you should be. And if you are not, then start doing that. Start training that way. Start asking yourself what you can be doing to increase all of that energy and all of that vibration. We talked about vibrations last week.

So keep those vibes high, keep the energy and focus into what you can be doing better. Like I said, dance classes, vocally training, understanding character work, and really kind of going from there. I also want you to think about this. Once those doors are actually closed, what do you do with the closed doors? I love to look at the closed doors kind of in this little aligned path. So say we’re walking down this space, could be an open road, could be a closed road, whatever it is. But in my brain I look at it as open doors. There’s opportunity everywhere.

I wake up and I think like that. There's an opportunity for me to do so many different things. I can build my client base. I can make new partnerships. I can create new opportunities. I can create new programs for people, opportunity everywhere. Now, once those doors are closed, I actually look at that as my aligned path and I think, I’m actually really glad someone closed that door on me because it keeps me going forward. So I don’t continue to stand there and beat on that door. What I do is I decide, you know what? I’m going to acknowledge that door closed and I’m going to live in that aligned path and I’m going to keep moving forward.

That is what I choose to do. That’s where I choose to focus. I end up being very grateful that those opportunities end up aligning me in other places and other spaces to focus my energy where I am, more aligned. And sometimes more often what I really want to focus on doing, because I think sometimes we as artists can get lost in this fear brain where we think, well, I have to take this job because honestly, I don’t know what I’m going to get. I don’t know what I’m going to get and so I’m just going to take this job.

And do I want to do this job? Not really. Is the money bad? Kind of. And then you end up taking a job but then you end up staying in it and then something particularly great comes along. And sometimes we just stay in it. That’s fine too if that’s what you want to do, but it’s really up to you to decide, going forward, what do you want your life to look like? And continue to increase and raise the vibrations and your game and level up. I want you to continue moving forward once those doors are closed.

I want you to in this follow your instinct, your life, your understanding, your journey. And I love to live by the 10 things every single day, if there’s something I can focus on, 10 things in a day that increase my quality of life. If it is more time in my day, if it is better relationships, if it is a nice peaceful dynamic with my partner, whatever it is that keeps you in that content focused brain space.

And I mentioned that I was going to have my man on here coming soon. And the cool part is, is that we love this life of togetherness and being together but we let one another independently conquer our lives. And I want you to focus on being in a place where you can do that, if you choose, or if you currently have a partner. Have a partner that allows you to explore that journey and really follow your own instinct and your own career path and all of those things that you want for yourself and your life to live out your dreams independently.

And again, like I said, if you’re with a partner that supports that, you can do that independently, but together. And that’s really what I encourage. There’s been a number of times where there’s a few jobs here and there and they’ll come up and the first thing I’ll say, I’ll just run it by my man and I’ll say, “What do you think about this?” He says, “Great. Do it. We’ll make it work. I’ll handle this. I’ll handle the adventures with our pups and our kids and all that kind of stuff.” And that’s the fun part, to really just have someone really kind of standing by your side supporting that process.

Now, I also want to just tidbit this last kind of focused and expecting to be disappointed. Absolutely, it’s all part of the game. Just allow yourself that brief disappointment and to continue moving forward. Do not hesitate. Any time you feel down, be there for a minute. Feel the feelings for a minute. Do not be surprised by why you’re disappointed. Process it. It’s real. You cared about something. It didn’t go the way you planned it to. That’s alright, feel that. It doesn’t mean you’re terrible. It doesn’t mean you should just throw in the towel or never audition again.

Again, like I said, unless you are a no talent hack and then you should. You should hang up your towel. You should not put your hat in the ring or whatever they say. I’m just joking, it’s your life. Do whatever the heck you want to do. But really, and I say that, it is your life, do whatever you want to do. Your dreams are always worth living. I will say that forever. I want everybody to feel that because I feel if we’re all aspiring and truly aligning ourselves to live in our dream, our best version of ourself, we all end up being happier. And happier people create contentment, and that contentment creates a greater balance.

And that is exactly what our world needs, a greater balance of we have this, we have that, but all in all, you will be disappointed in life. You also will be really, really happy in life when you get to this place and you have a deliciously managed mind where your mind is so kind of, yeah, I’m going to expect anxiety. I’m going to expect fear. I’m going to expect disappointment, but I’m also going to expect deep gratitude, great celebration, great happiness, a bit of euphoria while you end up realizing wow, I get to do what I love to do. And I’m paid to do what I love to do.

This is me living my dreams. Yes, it is. And that feeling and that vision and version of life is all yours to create and to truly write your own way. So thank you so much for listening today, my beautiful performers. Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, like I said, Feel free to email me. Send me your questions. What do you want me to talk about? What do you care about? I want to hear what you care about, even some guests that you’d love to hear on the show. I’d love to hear from that angle of it as well.

But thank you so much. Thanks for dealing with me while I have this hoarse voice simultaneously. That’s what happens when you really, truly never stop working. And a lot of the culmination of the work that you do comes to this kind of one month thing.

But I’m getting ready to head out to LA today and see a friend in Chicago on the national tour. And then I'm going to head out to Grenada for about a week and a half with my man, while he’s a big old scuba nerd and just kind of hang out, drink some champagne, read about a million books, exercise. And just enjoy all the beautiful views in the little island of the Caribbean there. So take care, be well. And yeah, don’t hesitate to reach out if you ever need me. Thanks so much.

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Thank you for listening to today’s episode of The Confident Performer. If you want to learn more about living your truth and showing up as your most authentic, beautiful self, visit See you next week!

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