I live for playing music. Rocking out is one of the few things that consistently brings me to the present and fills me with joy. Yet another week went by and I forgot to do what I love … again.
How can that happen? You’d think that something that makes me feel so good would automatically be motivating. It’s not some chore like cleaning the toilet that I procrastinate because I really hate it. I like to blame my band mates when practice doesn’t happen,
“Damn it! The guys canceled practice.”
My fingers will be on my bass no matter what.
But I know I can practice on my own. Actually, I was so frustrated trying to coordinate our schedules and priorities for practice and shows that I started a solo project. Guess what? I still don’t end up practicing as often as I want to and I am the only one to blame.
I know I’m not the only one who experiences this because I ask this question of my clients and I hear responses of weeks to years that they have neglected to do things that they love. Finding time to do everything can be difficult, especially with all of the deadlines upon us.
For me, deadlines and scheduling are the keys. I always play more and write more when I have a show coming up. During those times when I do not have a show or other external deadlines, I create my own deadlines. Setting a music-related goal with a realistic time frame: I will write one new song every month. Scheduling time in my calendar for practice: Every Tuesday I will practice for a minimum of two hours. Scheduling time for songwriting drives: Every Sunday I will take a drive alone to do some songwriting.
That last one reminds me that I have to also prioritize time in my life for finding inspiration. This doesn’t require a lot of time but I must be alone, without listening to music, with my phone on hand to record or take notes.
Finally, having a daily, weekly, and monthly check-in where I inventory my progress, celebrate my successes, and remind myself what I love to do and how long it has been since I did it. Even writing this post is helping me to recommit to my own goals. I have plans with a friend to jam this evening, whether or not that actually happens my fingers will be on my bass no matter what.
What do you love to do? When is the last time you’ve done it?