You are passionate about acting and want to make it your career.
You know that doing this will inspire your kids, and they are part of the reason you decided to go for it in the first place.
You want to create a better life for them.
But how in the world can you kick off your acting career, whilst giving your kids the care and attention they need?
1. Get Organised
You have 24 hours every day - use them wisely.
Let's give you 8 hours for sleep - that leaves 16 hours to get stuff done.
Planning in advance, EXACTLY how you'll use these hours, will give you far greater focus - making you way more productive.
Bear in mind that things generally take more time than we think they will - so don't be tempted to pack your days out. Try getting clear the night before, and include family time/ commitments, a block of time with nothing booked in and some focused time for your acting career.
2. Stop Saying "I can't Fit It All In!"
It's just not true.
I get it, because I used to say it myself, but then it clicked. What I actually meant was that I was giving everything equal priority, attempting to do it all at once.
If you feel you don't have time, keep a record of time spent, as you go through your days - to see exactly where your time is going.
Normally, when I ask people to do this, they are shocked with their findings.
As you go through your record, look at where you are wasting time on non-essential tasks, and get your priorities in order. There may be some things that you could drop entirely, or at least put on hold.
Yep, your house might not be spotlessly clean, but during baby's nap time you are now applying for acting roles, instead of hoovering the stairs.
3. Don't Try To Multi-Task
If you are spending time with your family, do that and that alone.
Be fully present and enjoy that time with them.
When it is time to focus on your acting, then focus fully on your acting.
Trying to work whilst looking after kids is not good for anyone.
You'll be frustrated because you're not able to focus properly with your flow constantly being interrupted, and your kids will be frustrated because they are not getting the attention they need.
4. Keep The Magic Alive!
Although you should avoid multi-tasking, there is nothing stopping you from keeping the magic and fun of acting alive, by getting your kids involved!
Depending on their age, your kids could read in for you or if they are younger, they will be a very appreciative audience.
Kids LOVE getting involved because, to them, it's just playing. It's a great way for you to bond and enjoy time together.
5. Can You Find Even More Time?
Are your kids at school during the day? Are there other friends/ family members who can help out when you need to focus on your acting?
Can you get them in with a childminder for a few hours a week?
Can you agree a set time of the day that is 'quiet time' - where your children can play quietly, or have a nap, whilst you do what you need to do for your career?
When my girls were babies, I would get up at 4AM - so that I can work for a couple of hours before they got up. I treasured the couple of hours and found I could get so much more done in those 2 hours, than I could for the rest of the day.
I still do it now!
6. Set Your Acting Goals In Line With The Time You Have To Dedicate
Somebody who can dedicate 40 hours a week to their acting is going to progress a lot faster than someone who can dedicate 5-10 hours.
Although setting ambitious is a great thing, they should feel reachable.
When setting your goals, consider the time you want to fully dedicate to your acting career each week.
7. Find Support For Last Minute Auditions/ Acting Work
Let's be honest - the acting industry is very last minute.
Plan now for what you will do if you get a call at 6PM for an early morning audition, the next day.
Ask friends and family if they would mind you calling on them - if needed - and offer to help them out in return.
Alternatively find a childminder who will work on an ad hoc basis, for times like this.
8. Remember Your Reason WHY!
Building an acting career is a very challenging thing to do. If you are responsible for children, perhaps even more so.
It requires a huge amount of dedication and the process will be a real test.
When things are tough, it's not easy to remain positive - especially when it seems as though you are giving it your all and things aren't moving forward as quickly as you'd like.
This is when you need to focus on your reason WHY.
Remind yourself of why you are doing this in the first place - and get real honest with yourself - no bullsh*t here.
A compelling WHY, which resonates with you on a deeply emotional level, will really help you push through the most challenging of times.
You'll always find your WAY, when you get clear on your WHY!