You may not need to be at a 6 a.m. photoshoot after working 12 hours on a movie set. And your face may not be on tabloid covers on a regular basis, but I’ve worked with enough celebrities to know that many of the struggles they face really aren’t that different from our own.
Here are seven of our own daily challenges that we share with celebs (without the paparazzi).
We are on display.
We’ve always been a bit voyeuristic when it comes to celebrities’ lives. Now, with social media and smart phones, we look into each other’s lives. Everyone is observing everyone else. With social media comes social comparison, and we feel like we have to present a picture-perfect image to the world.
We feel pressure to get it all done right.
Often, we feel like the things we do and the decisions we make have life-or-death importance. (Even if we intellectually know that serving store-bought cupcakes instead of homemade cupcakes will not result in death, we still agonize over it.) And if we don’t get it right, we beat ourselves up over it.
You may have an entire day when you’re on a roll and things go smoothly. But make one mistake or fall short on one task and what sticks with you? The fact that you rocked everything else on your list? Or the one tiny thing you didn’t get right? If you’re like most people, you obsess over that one failure and disregard all your other successes.
It’s no different for celebrities. Sure, their to-do list may be totally different from yours, but showing yourself kindness is a learned skill for everyone.
We “act” for a living.
Your favorite actors may be masters at portraying different characters, but we all put on a show in our own way. Have you ever had the thought that someone doesn’t know The Real You? It’s because we conform to different circumstances, cultures and expectations.
Maybe you notice that you’re a completely different person around your boss than who you are when you’re around your friends. When you visit family, you may fall back into your childhood persona, the person your relatives expect to see.
Now, being appropriate in various social situations is perfectly fine. But it’s still possible to be appropriate while staying true to who you are.
We feel like we have a responsibility to everyone to do everything – and we can’t slow down.
Smartphones make all of us feel like we have an empire to run and if we don’t keep everyone happy that empire we call life will crumble. We always somehow have a million things to do and never enough time to do them in. We’re always “on demand.”
Think about how you react when you hear a text or email notification on your phone. Do you jump to check it? Do you feel guilty if you don’t respond to that 8 p.m. email from work? And how many times in the last month have you skipped taking an actual lunch break because you had too much to do?
We don’t feel good about ourselves. We’re afraid we are unloveable.
I’ve had too many clients tell me that their secret fear is that they’re somehow broken or that no one will love the real them.
But the solution here is to fall in love with yourself and then let the rest fall into place.
The same goes for celebrities. It doesn’t matter how many magazine covers they’ve been on or how many Facebook likes or Twitter followers they receive, if they haven’t cultivated a healthy, loving relationship with themselves, they won’t believe that they are loveable.
We feel like we aren’t enough.
We all have hopes and dreams, but we also tend to think we have some kind of fundamental flaw that will always hold us back. We say things like, “I can’t do that because…” or “I could never be like that because…”
This belief trickles down into our everyday actions and decisions. We don’t trust ourselves to be good enough, smart enough, strong enough or simply “enough” for whatever life throws at us. Deep down inside, we think that we’ll always screw it up.
We are scared, no matter how much success we have.
A true feeling of safety comes from your own perspective, not a cushy bank account. Having millions and mansions won’t clear away misery and misperceptions about the present moment.
All the money and accolades can’t make up for an internal experience of fear and the things-are-going-to-fall-apart-if-I-don’t-do-this-or-that narrative we all internalize. There’s still a feeling of not being enough and not having enough.
Just remember – it’s not life-or-death. And you are enough.
You can lead yourself through each moment in a self-loving way, no matter how much is going on or how much pressure you feel.
The next time you find yourself going a million miles a minute – feeling like you’ll never catch up or get it right – take a moment to breathe. Remind yourself, “This is not life-threatening.” It’s just decision-making and prioritization.
You can have mastery over your own perception. You can begin to recognize when you’re hiding behind a “character,” or beating yourself up over something that’s not important anyway. When you get there, you’ll be able to experience peace, happiness, freedom and enjoyment.