- Nyasha Zimba
7 Tips for aspiring super stars to survive the entertainment industry
... and it's dark side from our favourite childhood stars!
Becoming a super-star has never been easier, but the entertainment industry has never been darker. From betrayal, theft, exploration, abuse and more to wealth, influence, and success. The entertainment industry is a competitive and challenging world as evidenced by our favourite childhood stars, Here are 7 tips to navigate it for your goals!
1. Don't automatically trust your money with the people you trust the most (Britney Spears)
(Photo Credit: The New York Times)
This tip in particular was the catalyst of this whole article. The 13 year long exploitation of Britney Spears has been a huge eye opener for many. The more you learn about her story the more you realise that the only mistake she made was trusting that her family had her best interest at heart.
This is going to probably be the hardest pill to swallow in this article because family is always so trusted and assumed to be the most trustworthy people in your life, Britney learned the hard way that this is not always the truth!
For 13 years she has been stuck in an invisible prison where she makes no decisions on her career, money and life! She is unable to spend all of her wealth, on a measly allowance, while her family thrives off of her millions.
I'm not saying to cut off or immediately decide family is untrustworthy, all I am saying is it would probably be smart to keep your cards close to your chest with everyone until you are able to fully assess how your fame is changing THEM!
Tip: Consider even before success, who you can entrust outside of your circle to help in finances. The benefit of hiring external accountants etc is that even if they do screw you over, legally you have so much more to stand on and your emotional connection to them can not be used against you to prevent you seeking true justice like close family and friends would!
2. The people you choose to have in your life is life or death for your success (Beyonce & Jay-Z)
(Photo Credit: Billboard)
So in the previous tip we discussed trust and finance, let's get into environment.
There is a reason why no matter your belief system, across the board we can all see that who you choose to be around shapes your future.
Beyonce and Jay Z are one of the biggest examples of the power of relationships and your environment.
Beyonce being married to someone considered by many to be the GOAT of rap benefits her in many more ways than just clout. It means that whatever she wants to do, she has someone on her wavelength and that multiplies the possibility and successes of what they BOTH can have in each other.
One of the hardest things for aspiring stars today, is the fact that the closer you get to your dream you will probably find less people around you that add value to your life.
Tip: You need to be prepared for this and embrace it fully. If you are around negative people who want to cling onto victim mentality, do not be surprised when you wake up one day as a negative person with a victim mentality. Accountability is probably one of the biggest keys to success. When you surround yourself around people who take accountability for their actions you will notice you are around people who challenge you to bigger and better and you are all actually succeeding.
3. How to have a life-long career, not just a one-hit wonder - (Tia and Tamera)
(Photo Credit: Entertainment Weekly)
Tia and Tamera Mowry are probably most well known to be the twins we first knew and loved from their childhood show 'Sister Sister'. At a young age they graced our screens with their talent.
But Sister Sister first aired April fools day 1994, but they were no fools. They and their parents were dedicated to keeping them grounded. No matter what success they had, or even the fact their first show was made for them and their family, and even the men they married have been intentional about remembering and continuing the authenticity and grounding they had when they started.
Now as fully grown women they are still working in the entertainment industry, on projects they have said on both of their YouTube channels they love. Drama free, moving from success to success with the grounding they maintained from the beginning allowing them to move from strength to strength whilst not getting caught up in the darkness of Hollywood while still continuing a life long career.
Tip: Decide that there are things about you and your family that you never want to change (whether thats the family you had or the one you will create). If you stick to them, you should be able to prevent yourself from getting derailed by the dark and destructive traps of the entertainment industry.
4. Remember YOU are in control, you don't need a label, or management unless they are serving YOU (Spice Girls)
(Photo Credit: Entertainment Weekly)
The spice girls in a very short period of time took the world by storm despite being considered by so many to be talentless women who just got lucky. One area we all can agree they did not benefit from 'talentless luck' is control.
At many pivotal points of people's careers, they entrust management or labels etc to make the game-changjng decisions and moves for their career. The spice girls, however distastefully, continue to assume full control of their careers, even firing managers if they felt they were not allowing them to thrive in the way they wanted. They wrote their own music, created their own industry deals and even made their own outfits at time.
Tip: Do not fall into the trap that you NEED management, representation and labels etc to succeed. The power is with the people. A lot of the things they do, you can do and you have to be mindful as they can always choose to do things in ways that benefit them more than you. Remember, you are the talent!
5. Be intentional about your goals and your WORDS (Tupac Vs Biggie)
(Photo Credit: icon.ink)
This one is quick, harsh and simple, both Tupac and Biggie (whoever's side you are on) prophesied not just with their peers but in their music about death, dying young and how they would die and they were right.
This was first pointed out to me by a wiseman named Kofi, founder of Urban MBA, a course in entrepreneurship which I highly recommend to aspiring entrepreneurs.
At the end of the day, Jay Z and the spice girls, as mentioned already did the very opposite and have had life long careers.
Tip: Speak your dream and only your dream into existence, because if you speak your nightmares, whatever you speak will come true!
6. You need a strong sense of Identity or the Industry will destroy you (Michael Jackson)
(Photo Credit: BBC)
One thing I find that is not spoken about enough in the entertainment industry but that seems to be pivotal is identity.
I noticed this with Michael Jackson, without having a strong sense of his identity, he fell victim to the industry and the vultures around him. I watched an interview he did where he was questioned about his skin tone and his condition.To my surprise, he did not respond defending his condition. On the contrary he complained about how in society it's okay for people to darken their skin and not lighten it. It was at this moment I realised his battle with his identity was what opened the door for the turmoil that came in his life.
Tip: Understand the importance of identity and internal contentment. As great as it is to be a celebrity, famous or rich, all industries of success especially the entertainment industry have many people looking for a talented person with weaknesses they can exploit for profit.
7. Be prepared for how dark the industry can get, or you will get swept into the darkness (Aaliyah)
(Photo Credit: BBC)
Now in the previous tip, we discussed one dark side of the entertainment industry and how i like to call it Hollywood. But it gets darker and if you are wanting to be a super star, you must know how dark it is and plan how you will deal with it or you are doomed to become consumed by it.
Aaliyah was a young, extremely talented and popular singer who rose to fame as a teen. As I mention her, I am sure your mind has not failed to mention the name of the paedophile facing over 100 years in prison now for his crimes despite believing he could fly, R-Kelly.
They married when she was 15 and he was 27, many, without the law would be easily able to see the issue here. Unfortunately, currently the entertainment industry is an industry that is led by many sick and twisted people who encourage and participate in the sexual exploitation of men, women and children for fame.
Many are offered their wildest dreams in exchange for a catastrophic sacrifice of their morals and values.
Tips: Make your morals and values black and white because the truth is the industry is a place where any grey areas can be used and abused by sick, twisted people with money and power to make them more rich and powerful and potentially leaving you with no rights to your work, no money or people you can trust and a whole bunch of things you have done that you swore you could never have done on your weakest day.
This article is not to freak you out, its to equip you with tools, knowledge and mindsets to become a super star and nothing else against that! Our favourite childhood stars have learned the hard way!