The Best Actors Are Just Kids Who Never Grew Up - 5 Bulletproof Techniques For Embracing Your Inner Child.
There’s nothing quite as charming as the face of a smiling child.
Joyful, unquestionably optimistic and filled with an open, generous nature. A child is both vulnerable and powerful all at the same time.
As we get older things happen to us, we can close off, put up walls, develop limiting beliefs about; our worth, our purpose, how deserving we are of love, even what kind of a person we are. It’s so important to remind yourself that at the end of the day, all of that is just an illusion. That’s not to say the consequences of thinking those thoughts aren’t real. Because our thoughts are what determine our reality.
Thoughts are things.
To play to the crowd here for a moment, a wise man named Shakespeare once wrote “For there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” That is to say; our minds are powerful things. Much more complex than any smart phone or tablet. Our minds have the power to manifest both positively or negatively and a thought is all it takes.
In a recent workshop I did with one of Australia’s leading casting directors; Greg Apps, he made the point to challenge us by asking: “tell me the name of an A-list actor who doesn’t flirt?” Can you come up with a genuine answer? Someone said Danny Devito, but the response of the group was no, no, he probably flirts more than he should.
And if you ask me, I think that it all comes back to charm. That unguarded, childlike, fearless charm that’s so magnetic to watch on screen and in real life. You see, kids love danger, they’re so often at their most charming when they know they’ve done something wrong and the stakes couldn't be higher. If you’ve ever seen the viral video of: the Dad who found his two sons completely covered in paint, you know what I mean. The Dad completely loses his disciplinarian act when his son makes him crack up laughing by trying to manipulate his brother's answers to their Dad's interrogation. Even better is when he follows it up by asking “what’s funny Daddy?” followed by a little chuckle.
Watch it here.
As actors we need that. That trouble maker, that charming little rascal, we can’t let the dull routine of everyday life get us down or dowse the twinkle in our eye. Therefore I suggest you don't waste another minute of your precious time. Do what pleases you, be curious, adopt a gameful mindset and take on the adventure of life. Look at the world in wide eyed wonderment and explore it as if for the first time.
Watch Hook and see Robin Williams begin to believe as the lost boys say “It is you Peter, it is you!” and don’t let your little spark of madness go out.
These are a few of the little techniques I recommend to help encourage and bring out your inner child and that infectious sense of play.
At the end of the day it’s not the most practical advice. Adults wearing suits certainly wouldn’t condone it. Baby boomers might say it was immature and I’m sure no relationship counsellor could get behind the 'flirt as much as you can for the good of your acting' technique. Somehow though, I don’t think that’d stop our little kids from trying… and after they’d looked at you with those bright, sparkly eyes and cheeky grin, could we really hold it against them?
What are your thoughts? Do you have something you do to embrace your inner child? If you found this helpful, remember to join up for Premium content and insider news.
And if you're keen to embrace your inner child in your work, maybe try giving Script Gym a go.
Film and Theatre Actor Based in Sydney. Creator of Script Gym. Lover of Stories.