‘Feel the power that comes from focusing on something that excites you.’ Oprah Winfrey
When I came back to India at the start of this season, I was all guns a blazing, looking forward to the next phase of the album – the Goa launch and India tour. The band was back together and I was feeling really excited about the next few months.
Meetings, planning, marketing, PR, ideas flowing, potential collaborations in place.
Only thing was, that I was feeling really tired. In fact I had got to the point of being tired of hearing myself say how tired I was!
With that in mind, I decided to take advantage of one of the main delights of living in Goa. The opportunity to take a hut on the beach, spend time with nature and myself and re-charge my batteries.
As so often happens when I take the time to connect and listen to myself, one of ‘Life’s Surprises’ occurred and I discovered that what I was feeling underneath all the excitement was actually something very different.
‘Let music lead the way’ has been my motto for the last however many years. However, I realized I was no longer letting music lead the way, I was letting a preconceived idea of what I am supposed to do with my music lead the way.
Is ‘marketing’ music? Is ’PR’ music? Is ‘planning and management’ music? Whilst all necessary, my motto had subconsciously become ‘Let business lead the way’!
Being in the creative world has (in some ways) turned out to be harder than anything else I have ever done. Law, business planning, the corporate world of consultancy, although hard, had a structure that included other professionals to help you do your job. Musicians in the current market, often find themselves needing to do everything, with little or no resources. Luckily (due to my work background) I have the ability to do most, however something was going amiss.
Doing it all in the preconceived way I thought was necessary to be successful was causing a tiredness and a tension in me. A ‘disconnectedness’ in myself that was the direct opposite to what my music first brought me – A common theme amongst anyone trying to make a living from their passion, I am sure.
What if I were to bring the focus back to the creative and drop the idea of what I was supposed to do?
What if creativity, whilst bringing us back to our souls and our roots, also links us in with the magic of life?
If (as I believe) when we honor ourselves and our passions, things do work out for us, I needed to take the leap of faith in relation to my musical ‘success’ and create the right space for some ‘magic’ to happen.
The first thing I did to honor my re-found wisdom was postpone the album launch from November 2016 to January 2017. As it turned out, the weekend that was planned for the November launch was the weekend the Indian government decided to de-monetise. What a disaster that would have been! Our actual album launch (held in January at the Museum of Goa) turned out to be such a great event, I really couldn’t have asked for anything more.
Since my ‘return to heart’, every time we have played our performances seem to have got better, our crowds have got bigger, our appreciation stronger, and for the first time my phone kept ringing asking us if we were available to play. What a nice turn around that has been. What’s even greater is that it feels like it is only the beginning!
One of the beautiful things I learned when I first came to India was to let go of trying to control the outcomes. ‘Success’ as we know it is out of our hands. All we can do is honor our needs and trust that when we do that things work out.
When my body is tense my voice is tense, when my body is tired my music is tired, when the music is tired how can an audience be drawn to me? I am sure this is the same for everyone in every type of work that we do, just particularly obvious when it comes to me and my music.
So I (yet again) end this blog in a similar way to before:
Maybe our creative passions are there to teach us and help us in everyday life, as much as they are for us to gain joy? Maybe they need to be seen as a critical part of who we are as opposed to a luxury for the talented few? How would life be if we all managed to get over our fears and follow the yearning of our hearts and our passions?