5 Techniques for Better Acting & Self-Expression
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 6 min read


  1. Use improvisation to boost creativity
  2. Engage with sense memory for authenticity
  3. Practice vocal exercises for stronger delivery
  4. Adopt physical exercises for better body language
  5. Embrace character study for depth

Acting is not just about pretending to be someone else; it's a profound form of self-expression. It's about channeling emotions, thoughts, and experiences into a performance that can move an audience. If you're wondering how to improve acting for self-expression, you've come to the right place. We've got five techniques that will guide you on your journey to become not just a better actor, but a better communicator, too.

Use improvisation to boost creativity

Improvisation is the first technique we're going to explore. It's like a magic key that unlocks creativity and spontaneity, both of which are vital when you're trying to figure out how to improve acting for self-expression.

Embrace the Unexpected

Improvisation is all about being in the moment and reacting to what's happening around you. You're not following a script, so you're free to say or do anything that feels right. It might feel scary at first, but once you embrace the unexpected, you'll find that your performances become more dynamic and authentic. Try practicing with a partner: start a conversation, and let it flow naturally without planning what you'll say next. It's all about going with the flow and trusting your instincts.

Boost your Creativity

Improvisation is also a great way to boost your creativity. Since you're not bound by a script, you have the freedom to create your own characters, storylines, and worlds. This can help you think outside the box and come up with fresh, original ideas for your performances. Plus, it's a lot of fun to see where your imagination can take you!

Get Comfortable with Mistakes

Finally, improvisation teaches you to be comfortable with making mistakes. In fact, in improv, there's no such thing as a "mistake" — only unexpected twists and turns. This can be a real game-changer when you're thinking about how to improve acting for self-expression. If you're not afraid of messing up, you can take bigger risks and give more powerful performances. So go ahead, jump into the unknown, and see where it takes you.

Remember: improvisation isn't about being perfect. It's about being present, being creative, and having the courage to take risks. So next time you're rehearsing or performing, try throwing some improv into the mix. You might be surprised by what you can achieve.

Engage with sense memory for authenticity

The second technique we're focusing on is sense memory. It's a powerful tool that can help you tap into your own experiences and emotions, bringing authenticity and depth to your performances. If you're looking for ways on how to improve acting for self-expression, this technique is a must-try.

Unearth Your Personal Experiences

Sense memory is all about digging deep into your personal experiences. Think about a time when you felt a strong emotion, like joy, fear, or sadness. What did you see, hear, smell, taste, and touch? By recalling these sensory details, you can reconnect with that emotion and bring it to your performance. It's not always easy, but it's worth it.

Channel Emotions Into Your Performance

Once you've tapped into your sense memory, you can use it to fuel your performance. Let's say you're playing a character who's just received some shocking news. Instead of pretending to be shocked, you can recall a time when you were truly surprised and channel that feeling into your performance. This will make your reaction more genuine and believable.

Practice Makes Perfect

Like any other skill, using sense memory effectively takes practice. Start by setting aside some quiet time every day to explore your memories and emotions. Write them down in a journal if that helps. The more you practice, the better you'll get at accessing your sense memory when you need it.

Engaging with your sense memory can be challenging, but it's a game-changer when it comes to improving acting for self-expression. It allows you to tap into your own emotions and experiences, bringing authenticity and depth to your performances. So give it a try, and see how it can transform your acting.

Practice vocal exercises for stronger delivery

Having a well-projected, clear voice is vital for any actor. Your voice is your instrument, and vocal exercises can help fine-tune that instrument. They not only improve the quality of your voice but also enhance your self-expression while acting.

Breathe Properly

Believe it or not, most of us don't breathe correctly. Good breath control is the foundation of a strong, resonant voice. Practice breathing deeply into your diaphragm, not just your chest. You'll notice that it gives your voice more power and helps you speak more clearly.

Warm Up Your Voice

Just like you wouldn't run a marathon without warming up, you shouldn't start acting without warming up your voice. Simple exercises like humming, lip trills, or repeating tongue twisters can help loosen up your vocal cords and prepare them for performance.

Work on Articulation

Clear speech is crucial for effective communication on stage or on screen. Work on your articulation by practicing speech exercises that focus on certain difficult sounds or phrases that challenge your speech patterns. This will enhance your clarity and make your lines more impactful.

Remember, a strong voice is not just about volume—it's about clarity, emotion, and versatility. If you're wondering how to improve acting for self-expression, consider incorporating these vocal exercises into your routine. They can help you communicate more effectively, express your characters' emotions more powerfully, and ultimately, deliver a more compelling performance.

Adopt physical exercises for better body language

Physicality can often speak louder than words. As an actor, your body language plays a pivotal role in expressing your character's emotions and intentions. Here are some techniques to enhance your physical expressiveness and improve your acting for self-expression.

Yoga and Stretching

Yoga and other stretching exercises are excellent for improving flexibility and body awareness. Regular practice can help you develop a wider range of movement and a deeper understanding of your body. This can translate into more expressive and believable performances.

Dance and Movement Classes

Ever noticed how dancers seem to command a room without uttering a single word? That's the power of well-honed body language. Dance and movement classes can teach you how to use your body more effectively to convey emotions, attitudes, and character traits.

Mime and Pantomime

These art forms are all about expressing stories and emotions without words. They can be a fantastic way to learn how to use your body to communicate effectively and enhance your acting skills.

By incorporating these physical exercises into your routine, you can unlock a new level of expressiveness in your performances. Body language is a potent tool in an actor's arsenal—don't neglect it. If you're looking for ways on how to improve acting for self-expression, working on your physicality is a must!

Embrace character study for depth

Now, let's dig a bit deeper. Literally. Diving into the depths of your character can be a game-changer when it comes to improving your acting for self-expression. Let's explore some ways you can delve into your character more profoundly.

Research Your Character's Background

Every character has a backstory, even if it's not explicitly mentioned in the script. This backstory shapes their actions, reactions, and worldviews. Try to imagine their past experiences—where they grew up, the kind of people they interacted with, their joys, and their sorrows. It's like piecing together a jigsaw puzzle, where each piece adds more depth to the character.

Understand Their Motivations

What drives your character? What do they want more than anything? Understanding their motivations can help you portray their actions and reactions more authentically. It's not just about what they do, but why they do it. This understanding can add a whole new layer of realism to your performances.

Empathize With Your Character

Finally, try to see the world through your character's eyes. Empathize with their struggles and their triumphs. This can make your performances more heartfelt and relatable, helping you connect with your audience on a deeper level.

Remember, each character is a unique individual with their own set of experiences, motivations, and perspectives. By embracing character study, you can bring these individuals to life on stage or screen. So, if you're seeking ways on how to improve acting for self-expression, dive into the depths of your character and watch your performances transform!

If you enjoyed learning about techniques for better acting and self-expression, you'll definitely want to check out the workshop 'Breaking Into Acting: 9 Tips for Aspiring Actors' by Jessy Moussallem. This workshop will not only expand on the techniques discussed in this blog post, but also provide valuable tips on breaking into the acting industry and finding success as an aspiring actor. Don't miss out on this fantastic opportunity to learn from an experienced professional!