How to Be Successful at Handling Rejection

Good morning Leaps readers!

Today I want to share with you tips on being better at handling rejection. This is not just for dancers who are cut from auditions, but literally anyone reading this who’s realized, as the Rolling Stones once put it, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”. Some of my points will take a dance focus, but they are applicable to any and all areas of our lives and careers.

1. Take the Rejection as a Learning Opportunity

Whether you are at an audition or a job interview, reach out to the hiring director afterwards and ask for constructive feedback. If they are kind and have the time, they will try to give you pointers on what they did/didn’t see from you, and what they would have liked to. I have actually made many connections and opportunities for myself by reaching out to the people I wanted to work for to ask for feedback. The constructive critiques will give you something to focus on in your training and preparation for the next audition or interview. And it will also show the hiring director you actually care about improving and have a willingness to learn. By reaching out and showing an interest in growing, they may even reconsider their decision.

2. Look at the Other More Successful Auditionees/Applicants and See how They Prepared

Take a look around you. What are other applicants wearing? Is their resume and headshot in a neat folder, or are they pulling out a crumpled copy from the bottom of their backpack? What kind of training/classes/education did other applicants complete before attending the audition or interview? All of this is useful information, and can help you better prepare for the next time. Did you not bring a headshot or resumé? Was yours crumpled and folded, and on top of another applicant’s whose resumé was laminated and neat? It is important to pay attention to the details more successful applicants paid attention to, which will help put you ahead.

062718_tl_shoot-645

Photography by Tim Lytvinenko

3. Talk to Other Auditionees/Applicants and Be Friendly (Even After Rejection)

A lot of auditions start the moment you set foot in the audition room. The casting directors and current dancers (or employees) will examine how you interact with the others in the room, your energy, and your willingness to cooperate and be a team player. Sometimes the people you are competing for the same job with are not very friendly, but in every audition I’ve been on, I’ve met at least one person who was super friendly and interested in talking to me. Engaging with the other people in the room is also a great way to network, and who knows! You could meet your new best friend, or a new acquaintance who could lead you to other opportunities.

Being nasty or bitter because you were not the one hired is a big no-no. People remember names and faces, and if you make a grand and unpleasant exit, you will validate their decision to not hire you. Enter and leave with the same dignity and grace you came in with.

4. Use the Rejection to Fuel Your Fire, Not Douse Your Flame

You want this. You made the effort to travel to the audition/interview on time. You bought a new leotard or a new outfit for this day. You did your hair a specific way for this. Remember this goal – these goals – are important to you, and one “No”, or many “Nos” should not make you feel like your goal is unattainable. You can do it, you just have to keep going, keep training, and make your opportunities for yourself. Prepare the best you can, and give it all you have every time, and eventually your hard work will pay off.

062718_tl_shoot-169

Photography by Tim Lytvinenko

5. Treat Yourself 

After an audition, if you were successful – GREAT. Treat yourself to your favorite coffee or treat, or a nice lunch! If you were unsuccessful – that’s okay! Still treat yourself to your favorite coffee or treat, or a nice lunch. You are worth it, and you always try to make yourself feel positive and good after a rejection. You are worthy of feeling good whether or not you were hired by this one specific person. Self-love builds confidence and resilience, which can only help you when you are trying hard to be hired.

6. Keep Applying for Auditions/Interviews So You Always Have Something to Work Towards

This is pretty self-explanatory, but the more opportunities you create for yourself, the less you will be relying on one specific audition or interview as a potential source of income and fulfillment. Keep researching, keep applying, keep showing up. Make it happen.

Good luck!

xoxo

2017 signature

Advertisements

First Rockette Audition

GOOD AFTERNOON EVERYONE!

Yesterday was such a fun and exhausting Monday! I auditioned for the Radio City Rockettes for the very first time! I have been told my entire life to audition for the Rockettes because everyone who knows me knows I am a dancer, and says I look the part (and I am definitely tall enough!). If you’re a long-time reader, you also know that I’ve auditioned for their summer program numerous times, and this year was the first year I was invited!

20180806_235836.jpg

This audition listing posted late, probably somewhere in the middle of July, so I decided to finally break the ice with the Rockette audition anxiety I’ve had for YEARS and go! It was definitely not as nerve-wracking as I anticipated, and I actually felt really confident and felt like I did a pretty good job (even though I was cut). In my previous post earlier in the summer, Rockette Mini Intensive – I Was Invited!, you know that I was not expecting any invite this year since initially they told me there were no spots for me.

But between my later invite to their summer training, and then their summer audition, I am most certainly going to attend any and all auditions they have to see where else it will lead me. I really hope next summer I can spend the week training with the Rockettes! Audition season is always a pain in the butt, however, it’s also super exciting and keeps me dreaming big; especially days like yesterday!

Did you attend the Rockette audition yesterday? How is your audition season going?

(Related postAudition Season is Coming – Here’s How to Prepare)

xoxo

2017 signature

 

 

My First NYC Dance Job Starts this Fall!! (2018)

Hi everyone!

I am SO excited to announce I will be joining the Vanessa Long Dance Company’s Long2 Dance company starting in October 2018! Here is a blurb taken from her company’s webpage about her work!

“Vanessa Long Dance Company, a NYC based dance company, creates and performs original work by Artistic Director and Founder Vanessa Long. Since it’s founding in October 2014, VLDC quickly captured the attention of fellow artists, presenters, and audience members with its award winning work, ensemble of dancers, and fearless work tackling social and political issues we face in everyday life.” – vanessalongdancecompany.com

Long2 is the Vanessa Long second company! I will training and performing with Vanessa Long and her core company members starting in the fall, in addition to training with other guest choreographers who come in to set work on the Long2 dance ensemble. I am so excited I cannot contain it!!

_MG_4280

I auditioned for her on April 17 for the main company and was cut, so I did not expect her to reach out to me the next day and offer me a spot in her second company! ❤ I’ve been wanting to work with her for a few years now, and a dance professor of mine actually told me I should look into working with her during my senior year of college back in 2017.

This opportunity could not have come at a more significant time in my life, and I think it validates that I am on the right path. All of my auditioning, training, and hard work is starting to pay off! And the beautiful part is that this is only the beginning! I can’t wait to see where this road leads me, and I am thankful to participate in any way that I can.

Have a great day everybody!

2017 signature

How to Self-Remedy for Auditions When You’re Feeling Under the Weather

Happy Sunday everybody!

I have not felt well the last few days, and I had an audition this morning so I had to take some affirmative action to try to make myself feel better beforehand. Today I want to share some home remedies I follow to help myself feel audition-ready, even when I don’t feel like I can be. Here are some ways to take care of yourself and your health before an important audition or even an important performance.
1. Vitamin C

giphy

Vitamin c is essential for your immune system! Because it is a water-soluble vitamin, it takes a large dose of vitamin c to have too much. However, always follow the instructions when taking vitamins! Anyway, when I’m not feeling great, I blast my body with vitamin c to try to give my immune system a boost to kick the under-the-weather feelings. Vitamin c tablets, orange juice, grapefruit juice, and citrus fruits are great ways to get your daily intake of vitamin c.
2. Zinc

zicam

Dissolvable zinc tablets like Zicam are great for blasting your body with zinc. Zicam is supposed to be taken right when you start feeling lousy, and a lot of the time, they help kick a cold before it starts. Just be careful with the dissolvable tablets – they stain your teeth!
3. Kombucha teakombucha green tea

I was introduced to Yogi Kombucha Green Tea by a manager when I worked at the mall and came in sick one day, and she went to the store to buy me some tea bags. The healing and active ingredients in kombucha are great for your immune system, and for providing your body with antioxidants it needs to fight illnesses. I’ve had this Yogi brand hot tea, other brands of bottled “iced” kombucha tea, and homemade kombucha tea my uncle has made. It is a great way to remedy yourself at home! Plus, it’s pretty yummy!
4. Quality Sleep

giphy1

When I’m not feeling well, I sleep a lot! And I’m not usually a napper, so when I feel the need to nap I know something is off. Quality, uninterrupted sleep is essential for your body to heal and repair itself. Try to sleep for 7 hours or more the night before an important audition or performance day so you’re awake, refreshed, and at least a little more energized than you otherwise would be if you were up late watching Netflix or scrolling through Instagram.
5. Hydration

giphy2

WATER WATER WATER! I know drinking enough water throughout the day is annoying and surprisingly hard to do for many people (including myself), but staying hydrated will make you feel so much better! Most headaches and muscle aches are caused or exacerbated by dehydration, so staying hydrated will not only keep your body hydration at a healthy level, but also relieve muscular tension caused by dehydration.

I am by no means a doctor, nor do I know much about herbal medicine, and I am not claiming to know anything! However, those are my top 5 home remedies that I know work for me to help me kick the signs of a cold before it has the chance to start. These remedies are helpful during audition and performance season if you are in a pinch for time and need to feel better quick.

Let me know your favorite home remedies below! I’d love to read about your favorite self-care tips!

xoxo

2017 signature

Audition Season is Coming – Here’s How to Prepare

auditionseasoniscomingFINAL

OKAY EVERYONE DON’T PANIC. Audition season is almost here (if not here already!), and it is time to buckle down and focus on what we need to do to make it through (and hopefully land a job or two!!). Here are my best tips on preparing your body and mind for a grueling and competitive audition season.

  1. Start training for the jobs you will be auditioning for – If you haven’t taken ballet or modern in over three months, or you haven’t even attempted to get your booty into a jazz class, NOW IS THE TIME TO DO IT. Figure out what dance jobs you are interested in, and find a way to take classes in those genres. You want to feel as prepared and as technical as you can for your auditions, so make sure you keep up with classes, or if you’re not taking class you get yourself into some RIGHT AWAY.
  2. Cross-train at the gym (yes you have to work out in addition to taking class) – YES we as dancers need to do other exercise that is not just dance class and rehearsal. During a workout you can target other muscle groups, and focus on strengthening the muscles that will help you improve your technique and your stamina.
  3. Eat healthy! – This is a given. If you feed your body healthy foods, you will feel healthier, and actually be healthier. No, eating healthy on the week nights and going out binge drinking and partying on the weekends DOES NOT count. You must properly fuel your body every day because guess what? There are 300 other dancers who could be auditioning for the same job who are are not regretting Friday night’s drunken stay out.
  4. Catch enough Zzz’s – Try to get at least 7 hours of sleep a night the week of your audition. You will thank yourself when you feel alert and refreshed. Catching enough sleep will help you focus on the material being thrown at you during the audition.
  5. If you want to exercise the day before your audition, try something restorative – The day before an audition is not the time to sign up for Crossfit or workout for three hours straight. Give your body a restorative break and try a restorative yoga class, or some other gentle exercise to keep your muscles loose.
  6. Prepare your headshot and update your resume – Update your resume and headshots if you need to. You can read more about this in my article Staying Organized and Marketing Yourself as a Dance Professional. Your headshot and resume are how the casting directors know who you are, what you’re about, what you’ve done, and what you look like. You don’t want to be that person who comes to the audition without those materials prepared. You probably won’t be called back if they don’t have your cellphone number 😉
  7. Find time to unwind and recharge – Audition season is long and taxing on the mind and body (especially because most often dancer’s hear the words “no” instead of “yes”). So, find time to journal, create, engage in your favorite hobby, or just relax. Our lives are busy, and squeezing in auditions takes a lot of commuting, time, and money. Even the day of the audition if it is just on the train/bus/car ride to the audition, listen to some music that calms you down or do something leisurely to fight off nerves and recharge your mind.
  8. HAVE FUN – Auditions are just as exciting as they are nerve-wracking. Try to have fun and make the best of all of your auditions because you are there for YOU and to show the directors the best YOU possible. So be happy, optimistic, and respectful and you will most likely have a good time!
  9. Do your best, and don’t let the “No’s” make you feel less than – Listen, we are going to be rejected by more people than who is willing to give us a chance. That doesn’t mean we aren’t qualified to be there, it means we are just not what they are looking for at this time. You are talented, worthy, and a great dancer. This profession takes commitment, time, and patience, so keep your goals in mind and don’t let anything make you blue.

I hope these tips were helpful, and I hope you all have a successful and FUN audition season. ❤ Let me know what you’re auditioning for – WE’RE IN THIS TOGETHER!

xoxo

2017 signature