If you’ve watched True Detective, How I Met Your Mother, Hart of Dixie, General Hospital, or Ballers, you’ll recognize actress Alyshia Ochse. But you might not know that she’s also an author, accomplished athlete, and host of her own podcast “That One Audition.” Alyshia and I met through mutual friends and I totally admire her sense of humor and tenacity, and wanted to learn more about Alyshia’s approach to her career, creative expression, and commitment to fitness even while on set.
Did you always want to act, and which came first for you: writing or acting?
I’ve always wanted to be an actress. One of the first memories I have as a child was daydreaming out the living room window making up stories about the people outside. Stories fascinated me, the people fascinated me. Movies allowed me to escape my reality. When I was learning how to write in kindergarten, I wrote a note saying “I want to be in the TV when I grow up.” Writing came later in my life. I started writing in a journal and writing poetry around 10 years old. My first poem was published when I was 11. Sitting in math class, words poured into my mind and I scribbled out a poem with words I didn’t even understand. Words that I had to look up and learn. Creativity knows no age and I am grateful for the opportunity to daydream about another reality for myself. Writing is now a tool I use to feel my way through a situation, to express myself and to be connected to the flow of pure creativity.
Hollywood is a funny place. It IS the place where storytelling dreams do come true. But the thing that I have learned about Hollywood is that your “dream” is another person’s long journey that they achieved with a set of goals. Typically, an actor’s dream becomes a reality about 10 to 15 years after they have been grinding at it. It is not for the weary. You must be resilient and remember that it is about climbing and staying the course. There is no overnight success. Only the press makes “overnight successes.” Many of those actors and storytellers have been working relentlessly not only on their craft but on many side jobs to keep the bills paid. My suggestion after surviving for 16 years is having a game plan and having annual goals that allow you to see your progress to help you from being discouraged.
You host a podcast called "That One Audition." Tell us about the inspiration behind starting your podcast and what the process is like.
“That One Audition” spawned out of a hilarious audition experience where I was running in a bikini and my own flatulence was THE show stopper that left a whole room speechless. I left that room and wondered how many other people had bombed auditions or how many auditions left the actors ‘ vulnerabilities exposed. After discussing the experience in my acting class, many other actors shared audition stories that were beyond hysterical and exposing.
At the time I was volunteering at Young Storytellers helping kids learn how to write a story. These kids held the acting profession in the highest esteem but for reasons that made actors not human, not capable of making mistakes. I wanted to expose the journey of an actor through various different audition stories that allowed others to see the amount of rejection, humility, vulnerability, excitement, serendipity and hope that transpires day to day in this profession.
The process for the podcast is simple. I find creative storytellers that excite me for their longevity in this business. Every conversation leaves me with an insane amount of insight into another creative’s journey, pure inspiration and tangible tips to improve not only my career but the career of every listener.
How does Studio LB fit in to your fitness and wellness routine while on set? Have you taken a strong interest in your health your whole life, or is it something you've focused on more as an adult?
Studio LB is my go to workout when I’m on set because very rarely do I shoot at home. I have done Studio LB in an airport, a hotel, in my trailer, and at midnight when I arrive to a new location. It keeps my jet legged body feeling strong, agile and in shape without having to search for the nearest gym. I am so much less stressed now when I travel or when I work because I know I just need my computer or phone to get in the workout that keeps my mind and body in flow. I’ve always been a person who loves to workout and keep my wellness in check. My body craves a good sweat! The best part of Studio LB for me is even on days when I don’t want to workout I can still motivate to do a 5 or 10 minute workout.
Do you have any methods for or ideas about creative expression to share?
I have daily practice to allow myself to be in the utmost, connected creative expression. Every morning I write three pages of just free flow, uninterrupted stream of consciousness that is not grammatically correct but just getting the thoughts out. These pages are a part of my ritual to get ideas out of my brain and flushed out. The pages also provide a safe space for me to work through any conflict or negative self talk that might be getting in the way of my art or life.
Also, in order to completely be of service to my creative process I have to do a daily ritual of mirror work. Louise Hay’s morning ritual of mirror work always allows the negative inner critic to take a back seat and allow the Universe/God to work through me. It is a three minute process of looking in the mirror and affirming my love for myself. Health and wealth of thoughts giveaway to the best creative expressions for me.