I’ve always been the type of person who is rather independent. If I wanted to do something, I’d go ahead and do it. If I was having an issue, or thought something was unfair, I’d speak up about it. I’m maybe too picky about what I’m looking for, or what I want sometimes, and I want to make sure things are right. I’m someone who does not settle. I don’t pick just any photographer to take my headshots, I will wait and pick the right one. I don’t settle on doing something just half way, I go all out. In the grand scheme of things, I am someone with big goals, aspirations, visions, and passions.. I don’t believe in settling on anything, or for anyone. You were born into this world to be something. To be someone. So why would you settle and only meet your expectations half way?
Call me crazy, but I want to make the most out of my life. I want to win jobs, I want to teach masterclasses, write books, form organizations that make a difference, and I want to earn my DMA. These are the things that excite me, and make me want to work and push myself past my limits. It’s about drive, ambition and motivation. In the performing arts world, you need that. To make this work, you have to be willing to do what it takes to have a successful career. You’ll hear of people practicing 6+ hours a day, people who network and are constantly putting themselves out there, people who are swamped in homework, or are putting their own money into a start-up. You have to be willing to sacrifice time, and energy to build a career for yourself. But my question still stands.
If you want things for yourself, why would you settle for anything less than the best? Why would you only meet your expectations half way?
Don’t do it. I’ve always dreamed of creating a vision board. Maybe over the holidays I’ll finally get to it! It’ll consist of my goals, dream schools and programs; my job aspirations and inspirations from my journey as an always evolving musician. I encourage everyone to try this out themselves! Your future in music is limitless; there are so many paths you can take! It’s awesome because you can really create the kind of future that you want for yourself. This is part of what really inspires me to continue to make blog posts and put out content that I hope will really help someone.
This is great, but how do I go after what I want? How do I reach my full potential?
Be fearless. Go after and do everything you want to do. Where do you start? Wherever you think is right. When I started Mind Over Practice, I started with the basics. What is this about? Why and how will it benefit people? What can I do with this moving forward? Even the smallest things like, what do I name my blog? Once I decided what I wanted to talk about, and gave myself my title, I began to write down everything I ever wanted to talk about including what and who interested me. I then had to decide where to go from there. With these posts came feedback from so many people which inspired me to keep going. I created an instagram account where I post content related, and unrelated to my blog each week. I’ve now given masterclasses on the topics of Performance Anxiety and Artistic Confidence. There’s more in the works, but I don’t want to give too much away right now!
Reaching your full potential is something that isn’t impossible as long as you have the skills to do it. When it comes down to it, I personally feel like the performing arts is one of the hardest careers paths to take and make a comfortable living. It takes a lot of effort, skill, time, patience, and drive to make it in the business, more than some have or are willing to put in. That’s the thing about it. Sometimes we need to ask ourselves the honest questions:
Are we willing to put in the work?
Are we willing to do whatever it takes to build the career we want?
Are we willing to sacrifice things for a successful future?
Do we have the patience to be in such a competitive field?
And so on.
Reaching your full potential is about commitment to your craft; It’s about looking past what you want and aiming high while being realistic about time frames, goals, etc. I’m personally a realist. I don’t have unrealistic ideas about getting into certain schools or winning certain jobs at a certain age. I’m real about where I am right now and what I can achieve at this moment. I don’t like setting myself up for disappointment with unrealistic ideas and goals. I’ve done that before and the end result wasn’t fun. The more I’ve looked at my life analytically and recognized what’s attainable and what’s not at each stage, the more I feel like I have the drive to go after things and build the future I want. Being honest with yourself helps you to establish other achievable goals. When you go after an achievable goal, even if it doesn’t work out in your favor, you can always be proud of the progress you made.
I’m currently applying for schools and there are some that still feel like a stretch for me, but I’m going for it anyways. I’m preparing in the best ways I can, and I am excited to eventually find out the outcome. I don’t think it’s impossible, or out of the realm of possibility, but I do feel like it's a fingertips length away of an achievable goal. Just because it might be a stretch does not mean that you shouldn’t give yourself the opportunity to pursue this goal. Go for it! This is part of how you reach your full potential. Even if that stretch goal doesn’t work out, you have the skill set to go back and analyze what may have gone wrong or what factors may have negatively affected the outcome. Take those things, put them into practice, and allow yourself these opportunities again at a later date! Never let giving up be an option. We are each capable of every opportunity that comes our way. Just because it doesn’t work out the first time, does not mean it wont the second or third. Allow yourself opportunities that push you to be great. Be realistic about them, but don’t sell yourself short by not giving things a second chance or trying new things that might be a stretch. This is the kind of drive and ambition you need to make your performance career a successful one. Don’t settle. Push yourself into the next realm and allow yourself to take every opportunity that comes your way.
Now, understand that even though you need to go the extra mile and push yourself, everyone has their limits. There is a healthy way to go about creating the life and career you want and also an unhealthy way. Do not burn relationships with family and friends to get to where you want to be. You NEED their support! The people who love you understand and want you to be successful. They may even be willing to help you get there. It’s important to remember to support them and their endeavours as well. Grow together, not away from each other.
Lastly, it is not selfish to put your success and career ahead of certain things in your life. That’s your pride and joy; that’s your living. To an extent, everyone feels that way. If you’re doing a job you hate, obviously it’s not worth it so do exactly what you want. Write that book. Play that clarinet. Win that job. Be your own boss. If anyone ever asks you to give something up, don’t do it. Don’t sacrifice yourself, your career or what makes you happy because someone told you to do so.. Live out the life you want and if others can’t accept your success, or are preventing you from succeeding, maybe you need to evaluate your relationship with that person. Do they want the best for you? Again, the people who love you will support you.
Don’t settle for something because someone held you back or told you to settle. Don’t settle because it’s the easiest thing to do. Don’t settle because you think your goals might be too far out of reach. Reach for your full potential. In the end, you’ll be happy you did. When you find love and success in what you do and are surrounded by those who supported you and helped you get there, there will be no better feeling in the world. Even if you’re on your way to success, savor every win. Celebrate every obstacle you overcome, or every move you make that gets you closer to your dreams. Don’t settle for less than what you want, and deserve.
Tune in next week for another brand new entry! In the meantime, give this a like and share it with your friends! Make sure you follow Mind Over Practice on instagram @mindoverpractice to keep up with any new details and posts. I’ll be doing a giveaway when I hit 1,000 follows so stay tuned!
Questions, comments, need advice? Message me on instagram or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. For now, have a productive week of positive practicing!