I HAVE been acting and dancing since I was five-years-old. I carried on performing growing up and worked as a model. Then at the age of 18 I moved from my native Australia to Mumbai so I could purse a career in acting. I have been fortunate to act in TV serials and films in India since then including my latest film Hotel Beautifool. I enjoy my work and God willing, I will move onto bigger projects. Here are 10 tips I would give other newcomers who are going on the same journey.

Know your craft: Being a pretty face and having a great personality isn’t enough. Learn the nuances of acting, singing or whatever creative pursuit you have. Although you should get the schooling early, its never too late to get training. Then you will enhance that knowledge further with practical experience.

Stay healthy: One of the most important decisions you have to make is to look after yourself. Make sure you have a healthy diet and balance that out with an exercise regime. This will keep you energised and looking your very best. All actors and actresses must be physically fit as the job is demanding. The sacrifices you make will result in professional gains.

Good appearance: Your appearance and body language will make you stand out in the crowd. So look after how you look and be aware of your appearance because that will give others a good first impression. So look good, smell great and have a confident demeanour.

Great photos: Get some great photographs taken by an experienced professional with some sort of track record. Have cool, classy and creative images that bring out your best features. For some casting directors this will be the first they see of you and for others it will be a way of remembering who you are.

Audition:Remember jobs are won or lost in auditions. Don’t be afraid to audition for the role you want and be mentally prepared. This is a way to express your talent and impress someone who will take your career forward. If you have been given a script beforehand make sure it is properly memorised before an audition.

Be strong: Acting is perhaps the most competitive industry, so be ready for a long journey and rejections along the way. There are lots of other people who want that job, so be prepared to queue and have that something unique that will set you apart from the crowd. Each experience will make you stronger.

Learn: One of the greatest things about acting is that you never stop learning and have an infinite number of possibilities. Don’t ever be that person who thinks they know everything. Directors, actors, writers, producers and others will all teach you something. Also go a step beyond by reading and doing your own research.Don’t be afraid to ask questions if you don’t understand anything.

Contacts: Build up your contacts list and remain in touch with people who are in the same profession. Go for quality contacts ahead of quantity, as there will be people who will be dishonest or time wasters. So do some background research by using tools like Google.

Remain motivated:There is no recipe for success, but staying focused and motivated will enable to you reach your goals. Motivation and hunger will lift you up when you are down. Remember you are not alone and there are plenty of wellwishers including family, who will be there in times of need or demotivation. Take the blessings of elders, remember why you started and pursue your dreams without fear.

Smile:Last but not least, enjoy the journey and the whole process. Everyone’s journey is different so you can’t compare yours to anyone else’s. Find your own path, keep smiling and remind yourself this is what you love