I run into so many young performers who are eager to “break in.” They appear to think that their careers will take off if they can just get an agent or connect with a casting director. That is accurate at times. However, there are times when aspiring actors push open these doors before they are ready. What they overlook is that the greatest way to compete in a fiercely competitive industry is to offer something that is actually distinctive. An actor who is creative and in control of their talent will catch the eye of potential employers. Any actor can exhibit that maturity if they are present and alert in the scene. Watch how others behave. Acting is an interior process, yes. It needs us to look inside of ourselves, but it also demands that we learn to observe people well. We must consider how individuals truly behave if we are to act honestly. Observe strangers. Contact strangers. Have family members share their experiences with you. Learn a little more about your colleagues. Any eccentrics you encounter should be welcomed. You’ll be surprised by how much this type of investigation and observation will help you in your profession. As much as you can, read. We read bite-sized chunks of information on electronic screens for an increasing amount of time every year.