Lust, anger, greed, envy, gluttony, and sloth are epic & timeless capital vices that historically transcend boundaries, timelines, and cultures.
…and then there’s PRIDE, considered to be the deadliest of all..the root of all…well…you know the rest.
But hang on to your horses, there, Dave! Are you saying I can’t have pride in my daughter’s soccer play…my son’s perfect school attendance, or my own triumph in finally getting the voiceover agent I deserve and worked hard for?
No…those all represent the BEST characteristics of pride…the feeling of self-respect, satisfaction with achievements or accomplishments, especially when it comes to a loved one whom you’ve had a hand in shaping.
Rather, the debilitating form of pride is the one that sneaks into your life, and keeps you from internalizing individual triumphs, or prompts you to constantly prove yourself to yourself and others. You find that you may be giving yourself TOO MUCH CREDIT for modest accomplishments. This is marked by insecurity and defensiveness.
It’s hard to be objective about pride…easy to justify and rationalize away; so let me offer 4 examples of how pride might be the roadblock to your growing VO success.
#1 I’VE HAD ALL THE VO COACHING I NEED
Really?…and you think nothing changes? Trends, cultural shifts, client preferences, vocal techniques, pronunciations? You’re so set in your ways, and you’re so convinced those ways are set in stone, that you’re pretty much at the top of your game and always will be. No one can really tell you anything new, and no one has a shred of good advice left that you haven’t already heard. You may not be THAT prideful, but enough so that you’re not going out of your way to take a new view of things.
#2 MY AUDIO CHAIN IS THE BEST IT’LL EVER BE
I see the logic. You’ve spent thousands on the best mic, pre-amp, software and computer money can buy. It’s sounding righteous, alright, but technological advances are developing faster than North Korean nuclear missiles, and some of that hardware/software is worth a closer look. Especially when it comes to digital business tools. Your pride in your “sound” might be misplaced when you realize that style is not really in the groove anymore.
#3 SENDING POSTCARDS IN THE US MAIL IS MY MARKETING PLAN
…And it might be working great…but for how long? Horses and the telegraph were tried ‘n’ true, but when the automobile and the phone came along…uh…not so much. Are you SO SURE you’ve got the magical formula, that you can’t afford to check out the latest client prospecting in Instagram or LinkedIn or email’d newsletters?
#4 ONLINE CASTING IS A SCAM, AND HAS NO FUTURE
Well, actually, some online casting sites ARE a scam, but that doesn’t mean you should turn your back on the potential of the entire medium. Good players are emerging, and are listening to the VO community and what’s fair. That’s not to say finding your own clients using your own methods is wrong, but just don’t think for a minute that this internet-based form of matching clients with talent will go away. it won’t. Is your prideful attitude keeping you from another revenue stream?
Honorable mention: Bragging… including humble bragging. ‘Nothing wrong with feeling good about managing a tough job, and having it turn out better than expected, or even acknowledging all the people and personal commitment that went into an achievement. All that is preferable to the mindset that says, “Look what *I* did!” For such bravado, it’s not about doing your best, but seemingly doing it better than anybody else, and letting everybody know.
Look, I write all this because I’ve been guilty of every single point I just made.
Swallow a little humble pie once in a while. It takes an ego to survive in this business, just not a head so big it gets in the way of your progress.