Mental illness in the acting industry

Creatives, we’re all so damn self-deprecating aren’t we?
I want to fill you guys in on what’s been going on with me and talk a little about my acting career as well.
So firstly, apologies for not writing at all for months. Things haven’t been very good and with that comes a lot of procrastination as well as negative thoughts, thus you guys get nothing. However, it’s a beautiful day today and I’ve been planning on posting so I’m going to damn well do it.

I was in therapy last week talking about this very blog and recanting my disappointment with not posting anything and not feeling inspired to write in the slightest as well as feeling stagnant in all avenues of my life. My therapist said ‘So, write about that’ and she was right; there’s no reason for me to not be honest and tell everyone what’s been going on for me the last few months and the longer I leave it, the harder it is for me to start afresh.

Since January I have been back in formal training (acting training that is) after miraculously landing a small part in an upcoming Netflix series and remembering it’s the only thing I really love doing and trust my talent in. In that time I have been making an effort to put myself ‘out there’ more which has involved actually going to the auditions and castings I am invited to; for years I have missed amazing opportunities because of constant negative thoughts leading up to castings and then telling myself there is absolutely no point in going so may as well stay home and binge and purge instead.
That really has been my life, whilst fellow actors I have worked and trained with have been meeting new creatives, writing their own work and finding success I have been home with my head down the toilet and I really am sick (sorry about pun) of it.

So, I am still dealing with these negative thoughts and I definitely have not attended every casting I’ve been invited to or taken every opportunity by the horns but I have made the effort to ignore the thoughts and push myself to what I have felt capable of. It has lead to a lead in a short film which will be screened later on this month as well as signing with a new agent and finally editing my updated showreel together so all in all I am quite proud of myself. I suppose this is what it really is all about, each step in recovery comes with new challenges and it’s our job (not our therapists or anyone else’s for that matter) to make sure we are using all the tools in our arsenal to confront said challenges and not take to the bed and weep for a week.

For years I have been pursuing this career but constantly held myself back with breakdowns and hospital stays (so time-consuming) I also have had some quite rotten luck when it’s come to filming shows or commercials that didn’t get aired as well as an agent that told me I was a massive disappointment and would never work because I had a panic attack and missed a casting which has had an enormous impact on my confidence.
Working in the creative industry is really hard. Working in the creative industry and suffering from a mental illness is really fucking hard. We all fall victim to the negative self talk and the lack of self esteem at some points but if we have a solid routine and a foundation of skills to use in everyday life we might be able to get to a place where these thoughts are so small and insignificant we can just brush them off!
That’s what I am working towards and I am going to share the journey with you, warts and all. If I have fucked up and relapsed massively I’m not going to take a three month break like I have down in the past, I’m just going to tell you and get myself back on track.
I’m twenty four this year and this is my time, I refuse to waste anymore of my life in a limbo of self doubt and procrastinating!

Another little point I wanted to address
A lot of people ask me on my various social medias why I no longer model and my recovery is the main reason; I am not confident with the way my body looks at all and the way I would feel about my body in pictures right now would send me into a downward spiral, it’s a shame because I love modelling and I know that I’m pretty good at it but for now, until I can look in the mirror and be satisfied I unfortunately will not be shooting.  This has enabled me to focus more on my acting (which has always been my main aim) and my general well-being but I do hope to return to modelling and some point.

Love and light,
Luce x

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