Thursday, March 11, 2010

Hard Times/Good Times

“Do what you love, not what you’re taught.” David Foster

The message in this statement is twofold. First, many of us let our professions in life choose us instead of us choosing them. Secondly, many of us spend too much time learning and not enough time doing.
In these hard economic times, most of us are evaluating and reprioritizing our lives. For some, it is scary. For others, it’s exciting.

It is important to remember that the number of hours in each day has not changed. YOU may have more time available than you used to, but you have the same amount of time each day as everyone around you. You can spend it worrying about what you’ve lost or use it preparing for what you want your future to be.

Being a “glass half full” kind of person, I think it is a great time to get out of line and chart your own path. There are opportunities to pursue goals that heretofore may have been pushed to the back of your bucket list. If you’ve always wanted to be a songwriter, maybe this forced change in routine is your chance to do it. No doubt, these hard times are going to thin the herd in most businesses. But it will also open up some new positions for those brave enough to fill them and leave fewer to share in the spoils.

If you buy into the “invest in yourself” mentality, and have been dreaming about becoming a serious songwriter, this is your time to put up or shut up. If you want the big payoff in the business of songwriting, invest your time to write your best songs, your money to record your best demos and your energy to find good placement for your songs.

If you are already a committed songwriter, I urge you to forget everything you’ve been taught about songwriting and write songs that you love. What have you got to lose? If you’ve been writing formulaic, safe songs trying to be “commercial”, they’re probably not your best work and won’t get you noticed anyway. You may as well use your unique voice and see what attention it brings to you.

Dreams live through hard times and will always find a way to survive. They will also respond to the attention you give them.

Do what you love, not what you’re taught. The result will be your greatest work and your most fulfilling life.

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