What is Emotional Preparation

What is Emotional Preparation Technique

What is Emotional Preparation? It is most commonly associated with the Meisner Technique for Actors. Emotional Preparation is the art of emotional self-stimulation using acting craft. Internal Emotions can be warmed up and activated by future external stimulations in acting work. Crafting Emotions is the future of acting.

Using Emotional Preparation leaves a person ready to be affected by another. Entering the “Imaginary Circumstances” of your scene after self stimulating an Emotional Range is the acting technique process. Emotional Preparation can be used with actors and with circumstances. It is key for Actors to learn.

Copyright 2019-2022 Simon Blake

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Actors who enter a scene with emotion has been more successful in the art form for centuries. The use of Emotional Preparation has been achieved by some Actors but not all.

It takes both the persistence and patience to achieve its craft. The following article answers the basics of Emotional Preparation and how it assists Actors in their participation within scenes. We answer and discuss the traditional uses of Emotional Preparation and how it works in with the emotional life of the scene.

Some Key Quotes of Acting Article:

“Working with things that stimulate you is completely different than working with things that don’t.”

“Using Emotional Preparation effectively involves being the raw nerve actively stimulated but not in action until affected with the other justifying your own actions. “

“It is essential for the Actor to realize that the only way they can work with Preparation is to release it “

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Working with Emotional Preparation

The majority of Artists and Actors work without Emotional Preparation. The Actors impulses if done well come off of the other Actors and out from the situations circumstance. The Actor is affected and interactive within their acting with what actually stimulates them. Without Emotional Preparation the only stimulus that they have to work from is the real time event of the scene’s happenings.

If the Actor is attentive and available, they will likely be responsive even without dialogue or preplanning. If the Actor is unable to allow themselves to be affected, they may try to indicate or perform junctures within their scenes. Working without Emotional Preparation gives the Actor less to work with. Not only do they have less going on inside of themselves internally but they also have less responsiveness prepared to be able to interact with.

To answer what is Emotional Preparation Technique one has to look at themselves internally.

What is Emotional Preparation in acting


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What is Emotional Preparation

The topic of Emotional Preparation is a fascinating one for both Actors and audiences to understand. There is a stark difference between the Actor using Emotional Preparation and them not. It is firstly an addition to the acting functions and processes. An Actor chooses to add Emotional Preparation so that they can improve the having of an experience during the scene.

When Emotional Preparation is done well it meshes into the functioning of the scenes and helps events to occur naturally within the scenes. Emotional Preparation has the last step of Emotional Activation which adds vulnerability to the Actor and places them within their own emotional truth.

In Preparation is easily explained by understanding that it is the added self-stimulations of the Actor prior to the event of the scene. The emotional self-stimulation prior to the scenes happening is the internal stirring up of emotional life in the Actor. The Actor stimulates their own responses to internally be stimulated.

Can You Have Too Much Preparation?

Yes. When an Actor has too much preparation they will need create an emotional block that will not interact well with any spontaneity. If you are hindered too much by your emotion you will need to adjust the depth of your emotional activation.

Example: Instead of Doing Deep Actor Preparation on your parent or child passing away, change the preparation to a pet to lessen the depth of emotion you entice. Another technique is to go further back than a more recent memory. This way you work from a place with truth of emotion yet have less heavy of an emotional weight so you are able to be more spontaneous and responsive in your acting improvisations and scene work.


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How Can I Be Emotionally Prepared?

The first place many Professional Actors and Aspiring actors start is in Journal writing their emotional experiences. Emotional Experiences are times in life where they feel an emotional highlight. Building from real life is an artform that you can perfect in a way to build consistency in your acting.

You know you are Emotionally Prepared because you will feel the influence of the emotion. The feelings will be deeper than just inclinations. The emotional influence will hold a weight that will affect the timing of your expressions in acting and your scene work.

When your timing is effected after doing the Emotionally Prepared processes you will start to know for certain you have done something to successfully affect yourself. Next, is to determine what and how you affected yourself by receiving your acting partner within your improvisation or scene. Allow your scene partner to be your guide by listening and receiving.

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Finding your Internal Stimulations

There are all kinds of ways that Actors can find internal stimulation as they discover what is emotional preparation. What is key is to find real stimulations that really “make your blood boil” or that really affect you. You want to find things that you care about and things that you resonate with rather than things that you do not give any focus or intent to.

Knowing yourself takes time and effort to achieve. Realizing who you are takes time and reflection. Some through hard work can learn more about who they are earlier on. It is ideal to consider what artistically your interests are when you are finding your emotions for acting.

Finding the intensities of your passions to match those in the script!

Working with things that stimulate you is completely different than working with things that don’t. The first way to start working with Emotional Preparation is to find what matters to you and be willing to use that in your own work.

If you are really actually stimulated than without very much stimulation you will easily have a response to your acting partners and to the circumstances, you enter. If you work out of your mind you will not find what is emotional preparation but instead find that nothing happens. The activation key is inside of your ability to internally becoming active which makes you as an Actor more reactive and spontaneous.

You need to be willing to enter into an unknown unpredictable circumstance which the inner life has not yet decided upon the outcome. What is Emotional Preparation is the baseline for adding grit to an Actors repertoire. It gains the traction of meaning into the work of the Actor.

You may find a genuinely and caring inside of yourself and stimulate it and the scene may bounce off that sincerity to create an entirely different event to occur in you. Emotional Preparation is not for the purpose of executing your inner emotional stir up but rather an impetuous reality that grounds your work in meaning rather than results.

Many Actors who start to learn about what is Emotional Preparation train themselves to obtain the results of whatever they stimulate. They may stir up great anger about their own life and rather than use that as a baseline of reflection use it as a purposed attack on the other Actor or the scene. Many Actors attend acting class just to find victims that they can unleash on in improvised acting settings. Using Emotional Preparation effectively involves being the raw nerve actively stimulated but not in action until affected with the other justifying your own actions.

Emotional Preparation is not about finding the hatred in oneself and applying it to a scene but rather finding the hatred or other stimulation and exploring what is it like having it activated in you. Your behaviors change and adjust based on what is internally stimulated to you and the invert expressions of that inner stimulations really resonate realities when interaction occurs rather than forced actions.

There are many movies and misdirected films that try to activate the Actors upset inner desires to inflict outwardly onto other Actors or just into the scene. Caution needs to be adhered to when intense and extreme behaviors are trained. It benefits the scenes functions very little to express extreme inner emotional life. What is far more effective is an open wound that is trying to acquire healing than a raging aholic that only wants revenge.

Choosing Your Acting Preparation

Despite what is Emotional Preparation to others you can choose a more sought-after approach that encompasses a greater degree of awareness and inclusion of your emotional life. If you choose your Emotional Preparation in ways that leave open the results of your inner stimulations, you will explore rather than implement the results of your being emotional.

Choosing your Emotional Preparation to be intense but not extreme assists you in being able to stay open and reflective with your situation rather than mean and upset without hearing or interacting within your scene. Finding the balance of depth instead of extremities is a grown-up decision and takes a secure Actor to not sell out to the immediate shock values.

Choosing personal elements in your work is the part of your work that is your craft. You craft the depth of your Emotional Preparation so that it can work for you and not control you. When you stay away from the extremes and instead craft from personal feelings you gain the ability to be stimulated by what your Emotional Preparation has done and remain open to what is the real time event of the scene.

What to do with Emotional Preparation?

Now that we have answered what is Emotional Preparation, we can answer what to do with it. The first thing to learn to do with it is to let it go. Let go of the Emotional Preparation by releasing it in a way that the other can see it but not in a way that performs it to them.

It does little good in normal conditions to put your Emotional Preparation in the face of the other Actors you are working with. Doing so may have an immediate impact but be short lived. It is far better to let your Emotional Preparation be there but release pontificating its obviousness. The intensity of the scenes can build in the subtleties of self-evident realities rather than performed or blaming the other for your emotional state.

Choosing to release yourself stimulated Emotional Preparation is a grown-up way of taking on the scene. You want to be a participant in the scene and not be an Actor pontificating a scene. Really being upset is a gain rather than decrease where the upset will pour out of you as spontaneous as possible.

It is essential for the Actor to realize that the only way they can work with Preparation is to release it. Allowing it to intertwine within their work. If the Actor pontificates their emotional state, they will lose genuinely connecting with their partners and circumstances.

Finding your Preparation is key for both Acting and Music. Music is an incredible practice tool of techniques as well as acting exercises. Finding your own emotion is part of being an artist in your desired craft.

What is Emotional Preparation

Examples of ‘What is Emotional Preparation’

Example 1: Sarah is a brat. She is used to getting what she wants and having it within days if not sooner. She decides that she wants to try to become an Actor and readily realizes in classes that she has to adjust herself to be more sensitive which she has been trying to do for over a decade.

Sarah knows how badly she wants to go on a trip and as soon as she starts to think about it a surge comes into her being. She can feel the push in her body to be willing to do anything to get what she wants. Instead of being pushy she trusts that her inner life is activated.

The scene starts and relaxes into her Emotional Preparation and pays attention to the other Actor for a entirely different reason of the scene. The undercurrent of her Emotional Preparation supports the scene without her doing much more. The scene finishes and she knows she has somehow done better rather than just following through demanding what she wanted in her Emotional Preparation.

If Sarah can achieve a temporary ability to be more effectively stimulated than most can.

Example2: Dean Bobby is a quiet guy and doesn’t appear to respond to much. His Emotional Preparation is getting tired of how he is being treated which goes along with the scene’s happenings. He knows that he cannot Emotionally Prepare on the scene but instead does by remembering how his brother John had treated him. Even though the real-life story how his older brother mistreated him gets a bit political he finds through the details of it all the inner life of the abuse that he has felt from his ‘brother’.

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As John went on to control parts of the estates of those they were both benefactors on Dean Bobby was left out at the whim of his brothers decisions rather than his own.

Dean Bobby gives up the storyline of the prior event and reality with his brother but has the impulses and feelings that are very much stimulated in him. He then enters into the reality of the scene putting his attention on what is external to him rather than what he has already internally stimulated.

The scenes focus for Bobby is on the external but the internal Emotional Preparation that he has done before the scenes happening is still emotionally active within him. This gives the scene a context of reality and fantastic contrast to resonate differences off of his Acting partner. The scene looks and is a real event occurring rather than a put-up front of acting.

Example 3:

Timothy Osh, fictional acting student is learning from the other cowboys how to do Emotional Preparation on a Roy Rogers cowboy set. He is helped by another who instructs him to find something intense to become upset by. He is able to find an upset issue that is can resonate with and even though he struggles with his own moralities he feels that the issue of putting up a good chivalry outlook is important. He feels strongly that he does not want to the ladies to know about the men’s business affairs. Thinking about this stirs him up into a hatred of how things are for him. He gets steaming upset.

When it comes time to do the scene, he has a strong and extreme mindset. He gains mentality over his acting partner and inflicts his partner with his emotional trauma from his emotional preparation. The scene comes off extreme and although the director can work with it is insensitive and short lived. Nothing of what his partner did caused any of the upset.

Timothy Osh thinks he has done a good job but everyone on set is just bypassing his efforts. The Director says it works and moves on to the next scene. Timothy looks to the guy who helped him with Emotional Preparation for approval as he gets little reaction from others.

What Timothy is missing is the humanity in the work of Emotional Preparation. He has failed to understand what Emotional Preparation is and failed to release it with any zest or subtleness. He uses a technique and exaggerates it which is his right to use it as he wishes but he bypasses even his own good will for the excitement and adrenaline seeking outlook.

John Wayne often said on the sets the Females were the ones that used Emotions more effectively.

It is important to access yourself and with how you really feel. If you leave your opinion in unopened and determined ways you will undermine your own efforts. The availability of your Emotional Preparation to others and to your circumstances are paramount over determined delivery of your emotion.

How to Express yourself as an Actor is key. Emotional Preparation is part of successful Acting.

Copyright 2019, 2022 Simon Blake

Imagination and Mental Health in Acting

Mental Health is on the forefront of exploration for Actors. Actors better themselves and expand their humanity by finding and releasing emotions into the artwork of acting. The artwork of acting is the canvas of which Actors get to discover themselves, their habits and expand their consciousness.

Mental Health in acting and the expansion of consciousness builds up internal strength and awareness of self. Actors do a brave thing when they work with both Imagination and Emotion.

It is a fact that Believing things that are not real but emotionally stimulating is part of the journey of acting.

Releasing is Part of Acting Technique

It is incredible how much releasing your “Acting Baggage” after Acting holds such importance. Talent is both the ability to find authentic emotion as well as release the emotional build up from doing a scene. Actors need to develop a consciousness to release their acting baggage and live Drama free lives in their real life.

Many new Actors both Professional and Aspiring will try to hold on to emotion in life so they can bring it into their improvisations and scene work. Limiting this type of situation is key with Emotional Preparation as Emotional Activation is the acting technique to be able to achieve and self activate the emotion just prior to acting. An actor with acting technique will not need to torment themselves in their life because they have the acting technique to find their emotion for their acting.

An Actor with acting technique will also have the ability to let go of their acting baggage and all the emotions that were stimulated in their acting improvisations and scenes. Thus they are able to live having even fuller and freer spontaneity in their acting work because they let go of that emotional weight outside of their acting work.

This is a really big key! .

How Emotional Preparation in Acting Resonates within Actor Scenes

The goal of how Emotional Preparation in acting resonates is to add timing and interplay to the scene work that is natural and authentic. Authentic acting is not planned execution but emotional timing. When an Actor Resonates their Emotional Preparation within the scene the emotions they self activated become part of the scene by Interaction!

Interaction is the key component that is proof of how Actor Preparation with emotion resonates in improvisations and scene study. Taking the leap into oneself to find and self activate an emotion is the critical element to then receive the other actor while being vulnerable and open emotionally.

Being vulnerable is a huge part of how emotion works in acting. Your brave courage is the courage in acting to affect yourself in an emotionally vulnerable way and then receive the other while staying open emotionally to how you self activated your emotion. Your attention will change to be completely on the other Actor while the remnants of emotions from Emotional Activation will bleed into scene work and improvisation.

About Simon Blake

Simon Blake has studied between 30000 – 40000 acting exercises and studied over 8-10++ thousand acting students work in acting. Studying their Emotional Preparation to their Spoon River Work. Studying every area of Meisner training work with well over 30 Teachers including himself.

“Meisner In and Out Exercise, which was later known as Doors and Activities give a basic building blocks to modern day acting” Emotional Preparation is an acting tool for actors, musicians and creators.

Simon Blake runs and operates the website EmotionalPreparation.com which teaches Actors how to add Emotion to their acting using improved acting techniques.

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