Balancing the Grind With LA-based, South African Actor Jonathan Peter

Jonathan Peter is a South African actor, currently based in Los Angeles, building up his film career with credits in such works as Days of Resilience and Done Deal.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

I remember the first time I ever performed in front of a live audience was when I was around 6 years old in a local Christmas play. I remember leaving the venue with so much enthusiasm and it was at this moment that I knew I wanted to act for the rest of my life.

Throughout my school years you would constantly find me in the theatre but a few years went on and I discovered that I wanted to become a screen actor. I set out to find an agency which I did but things did not work out. I had been signed with the agency for 2 years but I never received a phone call from them.

I then decided that I would aim for even bigger instead of just settling. After a lot of hard work I moved to finally moved to Los Angeles to pursue my dreams. Since moving to Los Angeles I have been privileged enough to feature in many short films with some great directors and I have met and been trained by many notable people in the field.

I currently have a project which is in post-production set to release in early 2020 which I believe is some of the best work I have ever done. It is a story about a young man trying to make a better life for himself and his family while also meeting a stranger who changes his perspective of life.

2) What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

I start off every morning in the gym. It helps me wake up and feel good about the day. Then I start doing industry related research and speak to friends and family.I generally love scheduling auditions early in the morning because I find that I have much more energy in morning casting sessions. My day really starts off around midday.

Everyday from around 12pm to as late as 10pm I will be in acting classes. Whether its a voice, movement or technique and scene study class I give it my all. In the evening I try to catch a movie at the theatres as often as I can, if not I will spend most of my evenings hanging out with friends.

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?

  • 7am: Wake up, go to the gym.
  • 8am: Shower, eat and scroll through emails.
  • 10am: Read a book, hangout with friends, call family
  • 11am: Have some lunch
  • 12 noon: Head off to an acting lesson.
  • 1-10pm: Acting lessons and dinner.
  • 6pm-10pm:Acting lesson, watch a movie.
  • 11:30pm: Prepare for the next day and go to bed.

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

Work-life balance for me means working hard towards your goals but still having the time for a social life an staying healthy. At the end of the day we only live once so we need to make the most out of it.

5) What do you think are some of the best habits or routines that you’ve developed over the years to help you achieve success in your life?

Maintaining good habits are crucial in your life. My best habit is waking up early every single morning. I go by the early bird catches the worm mentality. I tend to be super constructive early in the morning getting majority of my work done.

6) Are there any books that have helped you improve over the years?

I recently became very fond of reading informative books. Jeremiah Comey has a book The Art of Film Acting, I learned so much while reading this book about acting, the show business and just life choices in general. I had no idea how much work actors do behind the scenes in order to portray a character.

7) What is the number one thing you do to make sure you get the most out of your day?

Every single day I wake up hoping to be one step closer to my goals. A lot of people normally make monthly or yearly goals but I make small daily objectives which motivate me to work diligently every single day.

8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?

It would be my role model Dwayne Johnson. He wakes up early in the morning every single day, he then works out, has time to film and still be a father and spend time with his family. I would love to hear about how he balances it all.

9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

I would just like to say that we should all aim to work as hard as we possibly can but still make time to interact with friends and family because our time is only limited so we need to make the most out of every moment.

If you’d like to have a conversation with us about how you balance the grind, get in touch with us!

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About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.