Okay, so I guess it took me a while to write another one of these. I am sorry. Been thinking about it long and hard and this time I focused more on the inner self. I present you the grassroots manual to keep your sanity intact. How to keep the momentum going once you get the ball rolling and how to debunk all the silly shit you come up with in your twisted head. Creative people and your self-doubting thoughts. Okay, here goes. Sorry for the long post.
This may sound incredibly obvious, but it is one of those obvious truths that we don’t consider enough. Because considering it might actually motivate us. The key to creating momentum is to keep moving. The longer you keep moving without changing direction, the bigger the momentum. And, the bigger the momentum, the more unstoppable you are. I’m speaking about achieving your dreams, fulfilling the vision you set out for yourself. Dreams don’t come true instantly as you might be led to believe because of what you see on TV. Seriously. What gets left out of the bigger picture is usually the hard part. You achieve your dreams by achieving a series of breakthroughs. And there’s no such thing as breakthroughs without first creating momentum. Do you know why dreams die out? Because of the lack of breakthroughs. What causes lack of breakthroughs? Lack of momentum. What causes lack of momentum? Lack of movement.
Here’s a fact: most people sit around waiting for something to happen.
Some will do things randomly which they think could break them. But, I won't be the first to tell you, you won't achieve your dreams that way. No matter what you’re aiming for, you can find out how to do anything by doing a little research on the internet. There are tons of instructions, tips, how-tos and of course a shitload of clutter as well. Whatever the process, I want you to remember one phrase.
Keep fucking pushing.
Set your goal, achieve it and repeat the cycle. I know of people who learned the how-to’s but lacked the patience and perseverance to do the same thing over and over again until they achieve a tiny breakthrough that would motivate them to push forward. Then, did it all over again until they achieved another breakthrough - and then again until they reach the level they want. It takes fucking years to get anywhere and the process is hard. It's the same with everything.
My great friend used to say: whatever your goal, you need to invest 10.000 hours to become an expert of your craft. Spot on, amigo.
“When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps.” – Confucius “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” – Jim Rohn “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius
Approach the goal you've set and complete it, no matter how mundane, no matter how tiring. You must do it. Create momentum. You must always be in motion, in action. It’s the only way you’ll ever see your dream materialize.
Don’t sit around. Don’t be depressed. Keep moving.
You booked club shows, but no one really showed up. You bought boxes of t-shirts, only to sell a handful. Perhaps you had some internal crew fights, lost a couple of members and had to start the long and painful task of searching for new players. And that’s when it happened. The self-doubting pessimist appeared. The why-is-the-world-against-me-can-I-get-a-fucking-break kind of attitude? And guess who he brought with him? Mr Negativity.
And so began the fight within yourself. The stupid shit we all do.
You became your worst enemy, constantly telling yourself that no one cares, no one will ever listen to your music, no one will ever visit your website or go to your club gigs, no one will ever book you for a cool festival performance… no one within the industry will ever want to work with you. But you kept on going because that’s all you knew… despite being totally consumed with negative, self-loathing thoughts that made you bitter towards everyone and everything. Chances are that if you feel like you’re stuck, it’s due to the negative energy you’re consumed with and are putting out into the world. It's standing in the way of you overcoming a temporary situation. If you’re filled with self-doubt you clearly won’t be concentrating on your goals. And if you’re filled with negative emotions, they will undoubtedly affect others around you… who perhaps may not want to work with you because of your shitty attitude.
But here’s the thing that most people don’t realize; those crazy, self-doubting and fearful thoughts are biological.
They happen to all of us. In fact, they’re actually leftover evolutionary relics from the ancient lizard brain that still resides within our thick skull. Seriously. I’m not kidding. It’s the oldest part of your brain, and it’s called the amygdala. These pesky thoughts must be changed in order for you to move forward with positivity and success in your life. But believe it or not, those dark thoughts can be easily toned out and reprogrammed. You can trick your amygdala into making those feelings disappear!
The first step is to simply be conscious of the negative thoughts. Be aware.
When you catch yourself thinking crazy shit like this, just tell yourself to snap out of it and knock it off. Now, that may be easier said than done, but just being aware of them is half the battle. Once you’re aware of these old lizard brain thoughts, use positive affirmations to reassure yourself. Tell yourself you're the best shit around and pretty damn handsome as well or whatever you need to. God damn it! Be strong and believe it. The only suggestion I would add is while you've got your momentum going, only "bite off as much as you can chew". In other words, don't worry about running the marathon if that overwhelms you. It's what my father used to say as an ex-marathon runner. Focus on the first 3 miles, then keep on going and focus on the next 3. Or even simpler: look for a goal you can see in front of you. See that tree or a house? Reach it. And don't stop running. Pretty soon you'll be much farther down the road. Then set another goal in front of you. You get my drift.
Remember that you need to keep life interesting - for yourself and your fans.
Yes, do something and if it works, do that some more. But do it as it happens, give every moment your signature spin based on who you are in that moment. You'll love it more as it will soon become natural to you. You'll be aware of your purpose and so will your fans if that's what you're meant for. If you’ve been trying to make your passion a reality, do not quit. If something doesn’t work, all you have to do is change your approach. Look at people who are already doing what you want to do, and learn from them.