Updated: Aug 8, 2019
We're all guilty of leaving things on the proverbial back burner, as well as spreading ourselves too thin; this is just the way many of us learn to better prioritise our work flow. Demands on our time, even within our own business practices, have a way of testing our time management skills. Despite how well we plan things out, we often have to adapt to whichever demand is hogging all of your priorities. Hell, look at when I wrote the post before this one!
This leaves the question, how do so many folks out there get seem to get so much done!?
I feel like the answer to this one lies somewhere between the "Iceberg" analogy and understanding your own work habits a bit more intimately. It's true that you should not get too in your own head and begin comparing your output to those of your peers, again that brings us back to how much of an iceberg juts above the surface of the waters. We all work at different rates, and that's perfectly ok.
I've known many folks who have been envious of the success of others, and it is sincerely a false economy. Whole heartedly and genuinely, you should find a sense of happiness seeing your peers succeed, but also try to find an understanding in what is working for them; you could very well pick up something that could benefit your own practices. Not to pontificate, but it's important to always keep learning, we're all students in the end.
For me personally, I've always been one for working towards "the long game". I've been guilty of spending so much time being tangled up in preparing and building foundations, and this often leads to a lot of unnecessary guilt. Ultimately, these negative feelings, which I know many of us feel within the creative arts, don't serve any purpose except to trip us up on the things that are most important to us personally.
So, since starting my long climb with my business, how have I learned to curb this guilt? Honestly, so long as you're creating and achieving measurable goals, you're achieving small wins. Problem is, especially for the workoholics out there, we often forget to accept credit for these small wins. We just keep grinding at our work in an attempt to create a viable living that we sometimes don't stop to smell the roses. Personally, that was a big thing I was missing , and I was finding myself needlessly drained as a result. This year, with my loving fiance's unwavering help and support, I've managed to grow my business, play my part in our relocation to Melbourne (arduous), and finally get my new band THE INCANTUS finally rolling forward at a great rate of knots.
So what could you take from all of this?
If you find yourself feeling like you're in a rut, despite how much work you put in, despite how much you prioritise and create SMART goals and such, try these simple nuggets of conventional wisdom that are working for me: 1. Be nicer to yourself about being waylaid from your creative and business pursuits. Take a step back and list what you've accomplished in the last 6 months. Be honest with yourself, shake the guilt and be constructive! 2. Enjoy your small victories, use these to spur yourself on to create new measurable goals. Hold yourself accountable to these goals and will them into being. Keep flexibility and achievability in mind when setting these.
3. Revel in, and support the success of others. Absolutely mean it! There is no doubt a few oubliettes about for those that are insincere and snipe/connive. Simple rule: Just be a nice and helpful member of the music community. So whether your one for resolutions or one to just keep "swinging the hammer" and consistently keep setting short and long goals (more the later myself), I'm hoping the handful of points above help you out in some way. One last bit of conventional but hard won wisdom, find synergies everywhere! Your network is at it's strongest when you form genuine bonds and friendships within your scene. After all, we're all in this for the love of music :). Keep it metal folks and much love! More next Friday.