Steve Jobs might not have been a nice guy, but he had a few strokes of genius. I was reading one of his quotes the other day:
"Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice."
It made me reminisce about all the times I listened to my inner voice when my family and friends tried to get me to make safer choices.
I studied, got degrees, got safe jobs, but all the while, my inner voice asked me to please, PLEASE follow my passion for music.
The problem is I half-assed it for a very LONG time.
When you don't listen to your Inner Voice, you give power to others over YOUR life. I did that a lot, and I still do it from time to time.
What did it bring into my life?
Anxiety and eventually, DEPRESSION.
Pardon my french, but Depression is a motherfucker. You don't have the energy for anything. Brushing your teeth, getting out of the house, calling your friends. Everything becomes a monumental chore.
And before you know it, your life stalls. You become a ghost. And unless you have an incredible support system around you, you're trapped!
You run around in circles and can't figure a way out.
So today, I'd like to discuss with you ways to better listen to that inner voice.
I'm a nervous wreck. I bite my nails, shake my legs, scratch my head, clear my throat. I'm no expert, but I'm pretty sure if I were to gradually replace those with long, deep breaths, I would be WAY better off.
My nail-biting is actually a thing of the past.
What I think had the best effect of my anxiety was to completely overhaul my lifestyle. Watch my first Youtube videos. You might not even recognize me.
I was livid, fat, and didn't smile a whole lot. Oh… and I didn't blink often!
In the past 4 years, I have lost close to 40 pounds, got off 2 medications, changed my diet, and started to exercise several times a week.
My confidence is way up, and my mind is much clearer.
I love the movie and book "Peaceful Warrior". The acting is meh, the soundtrack generic, but the message is incredibly powerful.
One quote from the movie that stays with me to this day is when Socrates tells Dan to take out the trash. He just threw him in a river, Dan bolts out, furious, and asks him what kind of martial arts that was he never saw coming.
Here's Socrates' explanation:
"Take out the trash. The trash is anything that's keeping you away from the only thing that matters. The only thing that matters is this moment, here. now!"
How do you take out the trash?
First, by recognizing the noise. By being able to tell your friends' words from your own.
The way to observe your thoughts. I know… "Here we go again with this meditation crap". Meditation is tough. It might even be annoying, but we all do it. We are thinking machines. That's all we really do.
So think about this: how healthy is your thinking?
How positive is your inner dialogue?
Take out the trash.
Once your body is clean, and you have found a personal way to monitor your thoughts, your energy level will grow. It's time to use that energy wisely.
I love this quote by Richard Yates:
"Hard work is the best medicine yet devised for all the ills of man - and of woman."
When I started to work full time as a music producer, I didn't sustainably use my energy. I depleted myself by working too long and taking no breaks. I would have these shorter and shorter bursts of inspiration, followed by longer and longer periods of rest and inactivity.
I only found the solution lately: hard work is a smart use of your mental and physical energy. Slow and steady. Always finish your day with a positive outlook on what has been achieved. Always trust the process, even when you didn't get any creative breakthroughs.
More often than not, if you follow this exercise daily, the next day, a miracle happens. I can't explain it. But the more I finish my days with gratitude, the faster the next breakthrough comes my way.
And then, you become like a train. You start slow, but once you get going, nothing can stop you.
Then momentum builds.
And once you look back, you see days and then weeks of steady, good work.
The healthier you become, the happier you become with yourself. It's a process.
I find that the happier I become with who I am, the clearer I hear my intuition or gut feeling. This is not the same as fear.
Your inner voice is calm and soothing. With practice, you'll hear the difference.
Now the idea is to take its recommendations and run with it. So this takes us back full circle to action.
Take care of yourself > Clean your thoughts > Stay Busy > Hear your inner voice> Take More Action.
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Did you search online for ways to make it as a full-time music producer? Do you find yourself always being sold a marketing course? If you’re like I was at the beginning of my career, you want to focus on what you’re passionate about: music.