Just reaching out to touch base with everyone on touchy topic – Emotional Bleed.
What is Bleed?
Bleed is an emotional response that happens many times when we (as players) are invested in our characters. Emotions that we experience may “bleed over” into our characters (or) emotions that are invoked from our characters and their interactions with others “bleed over” into our real lives. As strange as that sounds, it’s a fairly common occurrence – and experienced by many persons in Theatre who practice “method acting”.
In our shared hobby, we often encounter situations where tensions run high IC’ly. In those times, it is very easy for those tensions to carry over into our real emotions. (If I were talking about this in my Comm class, I would refer to this as Unchecked Emotions). Elevated emotional states mess with our ability to effectively communicate with each other. Our brains get flooded with chemicals, and it becomes super easy to misunderstand what is really going on.
To help us enjoy our hobby, and help address these elevated emotional states – the NST’s office released the “Guide to Basic Safety Mechanics”
This is also referred to as the OOC Checkin system. It is a mandatory tool in this chronicle. Does this SOLVE the issues inherent in our shared hobby? No… but it is a great tool to HELP address many of these issues as they are occurring.
Another issue we often face is when we leave a scene while still in that heightened sense of emotion. Each of us is different in how we react these situations. Some of us brood, some rant, some walk away, some need hugs, others want to be left the f-k alone. We are a Domain of 80 persons many of whom have VERY strong personalities. That’s a tough thing to manage on a good day.
GENERALIZING: Understand that how you need to address a situation may not be how I need to address a situation. We are all unique individuals with unique needs and interpretations. There is no single way to handle emotional scenarios (other than to be aware that they exist).
If you find yourself in a place of heightened emotion:
- Take a beat.
- Take a breath.
- Walk away if you need to.
- Move forward with a cleared head.
- Offer an apology if it is warranted.
- Accept the apology if it is sincere.
Remember – we are not our characters. Our characters may be horrible, hateful creatures, intent upon winning (x) at all costs. WE are awesome people (teachers, scholars, veterans, professionals, writers, and countless other AWESOME things).
Let’s be Awesome together.
DC – DMH AZ D010
MESCON 2019 – Concierge Lead