We’ve all been there. We know what we should be doing for our music careers, but we just can’t seem to find the time to get to it. It’s so much easier to do almost anything but the necessary work to move forward as a songwriter. Well, in the end, this is a recipe for countless missed opportunities and a career that moves forward slowly if at all, despite how talented you may be. Here are a few ways to stop yourself from procrastinating when it comes to your music.
1. Remember that you’re running a business
Sometimes it can help to remember that if you’re hoping to generate income from your songwriting, this means you’re running a small business. And, just like in any business, you’re not allowed to skip work just because you don’t feel like going in. The intersection of art and commerce is a tricky one, but taking a more business-like approach to your career will help you show up and do the necessary work to move your career forward.
2. Break the work down into smaller pieces
One of my favorite expressions when it comes to any task that feels overwhelming is to “eat the elephant one bite at a time.” Thinking about ALL the work you have in front of you when it comes to your songwriting and music career can be so daunting that it’s easier to avoid it all. However, if you chip away a little at a time at the “work” parts of your career that aren’t as fun as the actual writing part, you’ll find that over time you’ve made great progress, even if you’ve only done it in small “bites.”
3. Get over your fear
When it comes to songwriting, sometimes procrastination is a function of fear. I’ve been writing songs for thirty years and I’m still a little scared each time I sit down to write. I believe it has to do with digging into your own emotional depths to come up with something meaningful. And not only is the actual writing of the songs scary, but so is pitching them. It’s tough to take your songs that mean so much to you and expose them to potential criticism and rejection. Making yourself vulnerable in this way is a challenge, but simply recognizing the fear for what it is can help. And, besides, without a little bravery, nothing good happens. So be brave.
Figuring out a way to keep yourself motivated in a songwriting career is a daily challenge. That said, the rewards - both spiritual and financial - can be great, so looking for ways to avoid procrastination and keep yourself moving will be well worth your while.
Cliff Goldmacher is a songwriter, music producer and educator with recording studios in Nashville, TN and Sonoma, CA. Through his studios, Cliff provides songwriters outside of Nashville with virtual, live access to Nashville’s best session musicians and demo singers for their songwriting demos, find out more. Download Cliff’s FREE tip sheet “A Dozen Quick Fixes To Instantly Improve Your Songs”