3 Ways To Successfully Create Margin In Your Life

NOTE: This is a guest post from my friend and fellow creative, Dustin Pead. Dustin is the Creative Arts Pastor at Friendship Church on the Southside of Indianapolis. You can learn a little more about him here. Or connect with him on Twitter.

Creating Margin, margin, productivity, Darren A. Cooper, Dustin Pead, guest post

Most of us would say that we would be more creative if we just had more time, more room to think, room to create for no reason, room to just…be. This means we’re craving an essential part to being an effective creative. (more…)

On The Block (7 Simple Ways to Defeat Writer’s Block)

NOTE: This is another guest post from my good friend Benjamin Cannon. Ben is the brains behind such companies as Spark Joy Music and Shine Indy. He is passionate about music and is an all around great guy. You can find him on the Spark Joy website, Facebook or Twitter.

Writer's Block

So let’s see, you’re staring at the blank screen. Your brain is fried, and you can feel a headache coming on right about now. You know you should be writing, but you can’t do this anymore. Your muse is gone and your well of inspiration is empty. You’re not just bored or tired, this is far worse, you have writer’s block.  (more…)

4 Out of the Box Ways to Grow Your Worship Team

A common question I often hear from pastors and worship leaders is, “How do I grow my worship team?” It doesn’t matter the size or location of your church, it’s an issue we all have dealt with. So let’s talk about some practical ways to grow your team.


Over the years I have observed one thing about musicians. Especially musicians within the church. The really good ones will never speak up. Tell me the last time a killer lead guitar player came up to you after the service and said, “I’m your next lead guitar player.” And it actually worked out. (more…)

A Simple Change To Help You Clarify Your Communication

When it comes to leadership there is one topic that we can never talk about enough. Communication. The way we communicate is the linchpin in our leadership. Learning to become a better communicator will always strengthen your ability to lead. There are many factors of communication we could talk about, but I’m learning one this year that I hope helps you as well as it’s helped me.


This past week I had to have a pretty tough conversation with a good friend of mine. After weeks of torturing myself by playing out the conversation in my head. I decided it was time to go talk with him. Thinking about how I was going to start the conversation, I played out every possible way to say what I needed to say to without disappointing him. (more…)

The Power of Living Life With a Vision

We all have an idea of where we want to be in life. Not always the best way on how to get there. There are many experts out there, but who do you listen to? I took some notes from one of the best leaders out there today, Michael Hyatt. He gave me an easy way to clarify my vision so that I can achieve what I know is inside of me. I guarantee it will help you too.


The past few weeks I have been preparing for a talk I’ll be giving at a local conference here in Indy. I start out by telling a story from my teenage years. A time when I really didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. In my notes, I wrote “most of the time I just let life happen to me, instead of happening to life.” (more…)

The Danger of Playing the Comparison Game

In today’s culture, it’s really easy to fall into the comparison trap. With social media feeding us the highlight reels of everyone we’ve ever know. Advertising showing us all we don’t have. And need… Before we know it contentment escapes us. Leaving us empty and searching for more. But the comparison game is a slippery slope that never takes us to where we want to be. So let’s take some time and talk about it. Drag it into the light and expose it for what it really is.

Untitled design

This idea slapped me in the face last week and I was writing. I had just finished a good hour of uninterrupted creative composition and was really enjoying the way it was all coming together. As I sat back, feeling satisfied with my work I stopped to check my email.  (more…)

How To Rethink Your Pain

Let’s face it. Life is tough. It beats us up and leaves us for dead. Just when we think we are safe another wave knocks us down and sends us into a tailspin. It’s really easy to get upset and stop trying. But we can’t give up. There is too much at stake. Plus it’s possible we can find a purpose to our pain.

create your art, darren a cooper, music business, music marketing

In previous posts, I have alluded to some pain I have experienced this last year. Real tragedy that has caused ups and downs on the road of life, not to mention my own creativity. This has caused me to second guess who I am as a person, as well as what I contribute to the world. Who I was created to be. (more…)

The Good, The Bad, The Stress

NOTE: This is a guest post from my good friend Benjamin Cannon. Ben is the brains behind such companies as Spark Joy Music and Shine Indy. He is passionate about music and is an all around great guy. You can find him on the Spark Joy website, Facebook or Twitter.

Stress, Creativity, Create Your Art, Music, Art, Spark Joy

Stress can be one of the fastest things to halt our creativity. Whether it’s a troubled relationship, financial crisis, illness or a stressful job, these situations as a whole tend to damper our emotional and mental energy, hindering our creative flow.


The Truth About The Way You Think

Let’s face it the music industry is changing. No one really knows what’s going on. As independent artists it’s easy to allow the unknowns to scare us. To frustrate us. Even allow us to become jaded. In the wake of such change, what do we need to do? How do we navigate these new waters?

Productivity, Thinking, Art, Creativity, Create Your Art, Darren A Cooper

Growing up I’m sure you heard the story of the tortoise and the hare. Most of the time that story is told with the moral being, slow and steady wins the race. Which is true. But what if we looked at it a little differently. Say, consistency with a positive attitude wins the race.