Archive for July, 2010


Consistency

I’ve been experiencing some downtime. It’s funny because a week ago I was overwhelmed and decided to take a “slow week,” and I’m now feeling the stress that comes from not seeing things happen. I seem to get more stressed about not using all of my time well than about having too many things to do.

I’m no expert on productivity and stress management and the like, but I know the thing that has helped me the most with this is actually my phone. It’s an Android phone so I have acces to a lot of apps. The most useful so far has been Gtasks, which is a pretty basic app that brings Google Tasks to your phone, and even has a widget. I use it along side the phone’s native (Google) calender app and 3Banana notes. These are all widgets, so they’re right there on my home screen and immediately accessible. And ofcourse with Google, everything is synced together and connected.

This makes it way easier to keep things at a steady pace: using up as much time as possible without becoming overwhelmed or double booked. In the business world these are the first things people learn about. The thing is, I am in the business world. Time is my investment, people are my profit and I am my margin. It’s a good thing I have a dayjob!

Seth Godin

Seth is an author and a blogger. I read his blog every day. It’s amazing. I don’t care who you are, if you have any motivation to accomplish anything with your time, you need to read it.

http://sethgodin.typepad.com/

I have a lot of different things I want to do before I die. The kind of things that people devote their whole lives to. I want to make music that reaches a lot of people; I want to write a novel; I want to make a movie; I want to make money as a stand-up comedian. It takes 10,000 hours of focused practice to get good at something. Shouldn’t I know better than to believe that all that is realistically attainable for me? I’m 23 and I haven’t done any of those things.

Then again, there’s over 87,000 hours in 10 years alone. I should have no excuse!!

As an artist, I slacked off for a long time. I never forced the issue. After I finally realized that I can’t live without writing, without expressing my art, I began to actually see where I was at. How far along I had gotten in my journey to be a recognized singer/songwriter: no where. Because I never made the realization that I HAVE to get there, and the subsequent decision to live it out. I was pretending. If you want to be an artist – musician, painter, writer, poet – you’re going to want to read this:

http://www.sfgoth.com/~immanis/rilke/letter1.html

Letters To A Young Poet from Ranier Maria Rilke. I actually heard about it from a Youtube video of Lady Gaga. Yup. This really applies to ANY artist. Even if you just get one small piece of useable knowledge from this work, it will be something that will stick with you and fuel you. Most likely it will be the question that Rilke poses: can I live without my art?

I’m here making a blog for the first time ever, taking care to make sure it looks legit and believable. I am competing with so many other blogs! Forget that, I’m competing with so many other people; artists, authors, promoters, thinkers, whiners, political types. Chances are that if you’re reading this – at least at this point – you know me. How am I going to break out of that “only-people-that-know-me-read-this” membrane? It’s like that cocoon that contained Neo in The Matrix, except its a blog and it doesn’t have pink gel and robots and tubes and Keanu Reeves.

I guess I’m just going to have to get to know more and more people. Isn’t that the best kind of relationship I can have with my “audience,” aka the giant, arbitrary blob that is supposed to buy things from me, listen to me, and be influenced by me? Such a thing doesn’t exist! I think knowing that is an essential first step in turning your ambitions as an artist into actual realities in the world. No audience exists for you. Just people.

So I can’t get thousands of subscriptions to my blog in only a few weeks. I can’t invest as much time into it as fulltime bloggers. But I can build one piece (read: person) at a time, just like anything else worthwhile is built. Besides, I WANT to know everyone that reads this, and that listens to my music. As an artist, if I’m expecting people to see any kind of value in my work, I first need them to know that it’s mutual.