Sometimes you feel things that you're uncertain about; you can't pinpoint exactly what it is that's sitting in your chest and making its way through you, yet something is there. It might be painful, it might be crippling, it might make you cry, but instead of allowing it to do any or all of these things, you divert your attention to anything and everything else. This is how most people live their lives and honestly, you can hardly call this living. Self medicating and distracting yourself so that you don't feel what you should be feeling. My acting teacher, John Ruskin, says that you have to go through life allowing people to affect you. It's such a beautiful and simple sentiment. But in order for this to happen you must first allow yourself to feel.
As I write this, I'm feeling something and I can't quite put my finger on it. I have no idea what is making my eyes water or what is squeezing my chest. My first instinct is to try and figure out the cause, the reason, the source of this feeling, but I can't figure it out so now what? Ruskin would say, "Just sit with it. Sit with the uncomfortableness." Much easier said than done. In class, we work on this during our repetition exercises - we focus our attention on our partner in order to take our minds off of ourselves. This allows you to be impulsive and instinctual and you would be surprised what type of emotions seep out of you when you're truly focused on your partner, not thinking, and your guard is down. Being able to fully immerse yourself in your partner is something that takes lots of practice, but once you've got it down, I imagine that life, not just acting, becomes a whole lot easier.
I have been dabbling with meditation because it helps you to be present and get out of your head and just take a moment to be. I downloaded an app called Headspace and the man guiding your meditation says to just sit with whatever you're feeling and it's actually really beautiful to just sit and live truthfully for those moments. Ultimately that's all I really want to do... live truthfully. If I'm feeling sad, I'll feel sad; If i'm feeling happy, I'll feel happy. I just want to stay as present as possible, honor each moment, live my truth and allow life to affect me. I want to get out of my damn head and stop being so self-conscious and judgmental. It's so funny, being overly conscious of self... just live in the moment and enjoy things! Love! Laugh! Live! There are so many beautiful things and people surrounding us and too often our blinders are up and we play it safe, missing everything. Challenge yourself to be present and alive.
Keep it simple. Breathe and live your truth.