How to Stop Drifting and Start Succeeding as an Artist

If there is one thing that independent musicians don’t lack, it’s tasks to be done. My list seems to double before I can even cross off one item. I’m sure you can relate to that. The problem is, how do you gain traction when there is so much to be done?

Music business, success, art, creativity, create your art

One huge mistake I made when I started Grizzly Music Company, was that I allowed myself to be tossed from idea to idea in hopes that something would catch and propel us to success. Although the ideas were solid, my inability to follow through lead me (and those who chose to go with me) on a path to nowhere.

I spent most of my time letting outside forces dictate who and what my dreams would become, instead of drawing a line in the sand and declare, “this is where we’re going, come with me”. I just drifted, and drifting never leads to success.

What I should have done is make a clear decision where we we’re going, and then worked as hard as I could until we got there. Once we hit our goal, then we could move on to the other amazing ideas we had.

I see this type of thing with artists all the time. Ideas get bigger and better, our to do lists grow and we easily get tossed from idea to idea. This makes us really busy, but being busy doesn’t mean we’re accomplishing anything.

So as artists we have a choice. We can let our career happen to us or we can make our career happen.

As artists we have a choice, let our careers happen or make our careers happen. What's your choose? Click To Tweet

In order to stop drifting there are some simple ideas that we can begin to put in place to help. They are really easy to write about, even easier to talk about, but the difficult work comes when we choose to take action.

Here are 3 simple ways to gain traction in your music career.

1. Create A Plan

Most of the time there is so much to do that I get overwhelmed and end up accomplishing nothing. But by simply creating a plan I have already seen huge success in my own career. I’m hitting goals and getting items off my list that have been there for years. It’s amazing what a written plan can do for you.

It sounds simple I know, but try it. Today, take some time and write out what you want to accomplish this year. Put time lines on it and don’t let yourself get distracted. Create a plan. Stick to the plan. Find success with a plan.

I truly believe that you will be shocked at what happened when you just simple write out what you want to accomplish.

2. Get A Mentor

Once you have created a plan you need someone to be there to help support you when it gets tough and you start questioning what you’re doing. Finding a mentor is a great way to help keep you on track.

Often I hear, “I don’t know who to ask” or “no one really understands what I’m doing” and honestly I get it. But I also can’t take that as an excuse, because I have used them myself and learned it’s a bunch of crap. So here’s 3 different types of people you could ask when you are looking for a mentor.

1. A friend or family member. 

2. Someone who is a little further down the road in their career than you. 

3. A group of likeminded guys or girls trying to do what you’re doing. 

In order to stop drifting you need a plan and you need someone to help you stay on track with that plan.  That is what a mentor will help you do. I challenge you to find one today.

3. Don’t Let Fear Win

Fear is a funny thing for us creative types. Often we come across confidence in our work and in who we are, but under the surface we question everything we do.

The reality is when you decide to start showing your work, fear will come. The question is how will you deal with it?

For me I have to rely on my mentor(s) to get me through the times when fear begins to win. I want to quit and say this isn’t for me, but that’s when who I surround myself with is really important. They have the ability and permission to kick my butt when needed.

Stop letting fear win. Rise up and #createyourart Click To Tweet

I’m not sure what works for you, but in order to find success you definitely can’t let fear win and a mentor can help you when the process get’s tough.

So don’t find yourself looking back three, five, or ten years from know wishing you wouldn’t have just drifted to where you are today. You can be successful in today’s music industry. You can make a living from your art. You just need to create and plan, find a mentor, and kick fear in the face.

Now get out there and #createyourart

Question: How have you made sure you aren’t just drifting in your career? What has worked for you? Comment below or ok Facebook and Twitter. 

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Darren A. Cooper

Darren A. Cooper

I am a writer, musician, and creative telling stories through music. I create to challenge and inspire you to create your art. It's your life. Your art. What are you creating? #createyourart

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