Internal Monologue Bullshit

 

During sex, in that moment before orgasm, the mind is intensely focused on one particular task.  As soon as that is passed the mind starts flitting all over the place again.  Can you think of any other time when we are so singularly focussed?  I can’t!!

Mostly our thought processes are complicated and random.

Yet frequently when actors believe their character should be thinking about something THEY WILL PLAN THE THINKING!!

Psychologists tell us that we have little direct knowledge of what goes on in our mind (‘Thinking, fast and slow p225) … SO HOW CAN PLANNING WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO THINK HELP ENABLE YOU TO FOLLOW A LIFELIKE PROCESS??

Brilliant image from https://www.facebook.com/myroomclean

Brilliant image from
https://www.facebook.com/myroomclean

Planning what you should be thinking is a bizarre idea.

There is a lot of bullshit talked about what actors call the ‘internal monlogue’ and just as much bullshit expounded on how to do them.   Sure, you can fake them and there’s no real problem with that IF IT WORKS.   But faking it, as consistent process, is a very low percentage return in the long run.

Trusting ourselves to use processes that are the actual way our mind functions are likely to be much more productive and efficient.  So, don’t shut down the options OPEN THEM UP.

The majority of issues that generate all that chaotic internal processing of diverse thoughts are UNEXPECTED ONES that confront and interrupt our comfortable expectations.  We call those interruptions SURPRISES.   Trusting yourself to play surprises is a much more practical path to confidently delivering moments in a scene where a difficult decision has to be processed.

When those moments occur in a scene spend time trying to identify what the real problem is; spend time trying to assess how ‘good or bad’ these circumstances are for you and once you have done that consider how you might deal with the issue or what choice you could make.  Surely, following that path will generate with ease the thought processes that are appropriate.

 

PLANNING the thoughts is a really confining and negative process.  PRIMING them is however both sensible and very productive.

For example you could prime yourself to consider …
#    the financial (money related),
#    sexual,
#    philosophical (‘Why does the world always’ etc),
#    psychological,
#    personal and so on
… aspects of the situation.

The Rehearsal Room technique of making a list of 6 – 8 things you want to say in a conversation, but don’t say, is one priming technique.  There must be many others.

Psychologists have proven that individuals ‘primed’ with thoughts about money would spend twice as long trying to solve a problem.  They also found that they were more selfish and less willing to spend time helping others.  These were unconscious outcomes of the priming.  And that’s what we are after – freedom to make decisions in a spontaneous way that relates to the circumstances and the relationship.

If the actor makes sure the ‘priming techniques’ are diverse more impulses will be generated by the variety of options that will then present themselves.  If you are having trouble finding relevant issues in the list above why not consider The Rehearsal Room’s very practical and highly active verbs list.

For example you could prime yourself to consider …
#    the financial (money related),
#    sexual,
#    philosophical (‘Why does the world always’ etc),
#    psychological,
#    personal
… and so on, aspects of the situation.

However, YOU SHOULDN’T be either pre-planning or envisaging the outcomes of these ‘priming choices’.  YOU SHOULD just wait for the surprise to eventuate and then see what difficulties and options it throws up for your consideration.  You can then expand the moment of difficulty by ‘assessing’ the surprise.  This is not difficult.  You do it all day every day as part of your living.

We have to stop being fearful of those moments where the scene throws up confronting and difficult decisions.  Put sensible preparation in place to prime a diverse range of options and then TRUST OURSELVES TO PLAY.

 

 

 

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