My sketch teacher likes to say, “A problem is only a problem if you don’t know that it exists.”
Most people I meet tend to look at their own flaws in a very negative way. We just wish they would go away.
I invite you to look at your flaws differently. If you know there is something to improve, you have some very useful information.
I have worn glasses for most of my life. I come from a very short-sighted family.
When I was very young, I hadn’t yet heard about DNA. I thought I would be able to escape the uncool fate of wearing glasses. What a silly thought - I would become an uncool nerd for many other reasons.
After a long time, it was becoming obvious that I couldn’t read the blackboard. That was useful information. I was quickly sent to an optometrist and prescribed a pair of glasses. My vision was corrected in an instant.
The problem was not knowing that I had a problem. I couldn’t see that I couldn’t see.
Beginner comedians get caught up in their flaws. I need to work on my characters. I need to learn more accents. I have to start doing more crowdwork. It can quickly become very brutal self-talk. There are so many things I need to fix. Am I good enough?
If you're aware of your shortcomings, this is valuable information. The beginner comedian who thinks they’re already the best… well… you can imagine how that turns out. If you know what you want to correct, you are already half way there.
Another tip: try to only change one thing at a time. It’ll be easier to remember once you’re under the hot spotlight of the stage, and it will be easier to notice your rapidly growing momentum.
Ask a kind friend to watch your next performance, and ask them to specifically pay attention to the change you’re making.