Goal Setting

Being Vulnerable with my Imperfections

Embrace the glorious mess that you are.png

Those of you who have followed along on my blog know that my goal was to do at least one blog entry a month, but it's February 22, and this is my first post of 2018. I also am VERY behind on my Get in Gear for the Next Tier homework, and I ate 1/4 of an oreo cream pie today. So I'm not feeling to hot on the goal accomplishment side of things. 

When it's a goal that only affects ME, I can struggle with follow through, (like dieting, or updating my blog on a schedule). When it's a goal that affects others (like getting off book quickly, or any group deadline) I am able to work diligently. I should figure out why that is...perhaps some therapy is in order to sort that out.

My husband and I were talking about this and he reminded me that it's good to use the 80/20 rule. I can't expect myself to be 100% all the time for everyone. I also have a toddler, and that takes a lot--especially right now when she has pink eye, and Da-da is now the preferred parent, so sometimes she tells me to move, shuts doors in my face, or cannot be comforted my me, just "Daaaa-daaaa." That's draining!

Is there like a type A - personality? Or B +? I sometimes feel like a wanna be perfectionist who someday people will unmask as a slacker. I feel like people perceive me as high functioning, but especially since becoming a parent (hello mom-brain), I feel major imposter syndrome and that folks will realize I don't do enough. Whatever "enough" is...sigh.

What I HAVE done well recently:

  • Joined a self-tape co-op. A handful of actors who are making themselves available to be readers for self-tape auditions with each other.
  • Met a new-to-me casting director face to face, so now she knows my face and name.
  • Continued to take class as part of the Theatre9/12 Company (currently working on a scene from The Children's Hour as Martha Dobie)
  • Prepped 2 monologues for TPS Unified General Auditions that I'm excited about.
  • Taken a Linklater voice class, and plan to attend again!
  • Scheduled (then made a a few mistakes and RE-scheduled) new headshots to help specify my brand. Done research on other photos I like and want similar looks to. Bought new clothes for the headshots (and I'm not allowing myself to wear them until the photos are complete, because I have a tendency to spill on myself and stain)
  • Performing in You Are Right, If You Think, which runs thru Feb 25, 2018
Zandi in  You Are Right, If You Think  with Theatre9/12. Photo by Michael Brunk.  nwlens.com

Zandi in You Are Right, If You Think with Theatre9/12. Photo by Michael Brunk. nwlens.com

So I'm doing the work. I should give myself credit; I'm working to accept myself and, as Elizabeth Gilbert says, the GLORIOUS mess that I am. I know I'm harder on myself than others are on me, but I never want to wallow in the status quo, especially when I have goals to further myself and my career. Focusing on the positive is always harder, though, but looking at the list above feels pretty good.



The New Years Resolution I Intend to Keep

Welcome to my website and my first blog entry!  

For many people, 2016 was...a lot. One of the big things for me in 2016 was the birth of my daughter! I made the difficult decision to leave my position as Director of Education at Bainbridge Performing Arts, in order to care for my daughter. Since then, I've felt the desire to use my mind and body for something beyond caring for a small child.

I've already accomplished a lot getting back into my acting career since having my baby and leaving my full-time job.

Zandi Carlson - Headshot - Photo by Danielle Barnum

What have I been up to?

·      Working with my acting coach, Charles Waxberg

·      Reading lots of plays

·      Finding monologues

·      Exploring my type and brand (more on that later!)

·      New Headshots (Thanks Danielle Barnum!)

·      Auditioning

·      Started this website and blog


Even though I'm a goal-setting, list-making, accomplishment-oriented kind of gal, for some reason, New Years has never been my favorite holiday. My previous resolutions have always faded quickly.

A few years back, I did a 3-week cleanse in January, and lost a bunch of weight, only to gain back even more than I lost. I was so resentful about all the restrictions I had placed on myself, I went a bit crazy with sweets in the months following.

This isn't going to be a blog about health and fitness. If you want that, then check out my friend Anna's blog on a healthier approach to fitness goal setting. She shared a great quote in Instagram which inspired me:  

I love that. I feel such a strong desire to leap into performing again and to manage my acting career. This quote reminds me to allow myself grace as I discover how to balance my new role as a mom and a working actor. 

Thanks to my friend, Charissa (Twitter: @charissajactor) I learned about Bonnie Gillespie, the author of Self-Management for Actors. I'm a big podcast listener and I recently started listening to the Inside Acting podcast.

The theme that kept resonating with me was...

This is a business of

People want to work with others who are dependable, AND who are enjoyable to work with.

Being a new mom is isolating. It is rewarding and joyful, yes, and also time-consuming, overwhelming, exhausting...the list goes on. Even with support systems in place, this tiny human depends on you. If you have to pay for childcare, things get even more complicated. With all the challenges of a new baby, I have not connected with people as much in the last 8+ months. So one of my focuses for 2017 is:

Connect with People


Strengthen Relationships

I want to...

  • Spend more time with people in person

  • See theatre and supporting artist and companies I love

  • Following up after meeting someone

  • Listen to people and ask questions

  • Create opportunities to work with others

  • Anything to really connect.

Even though I'm generally an outgoing person, I still get intimidated by people. I want to challenge myself to reach out to people I admire and respect, and to connect on a genuine, human level, rather than placing them on a pedestal. 

If you'd like to connect with me - Twitter and Instagram: @Zandi_Carlson.


Thanks for coming on this journey with me.