Your Greatest Asset

Do you remember the last time some asked you, “So, how’s the music career going?” And do you remember your answer? How you answered that question is all important, and here’s why.

Your reply tells a story not only of your present experience of your success (or failure) as a musician, but of your beliefs around your ability to be successful in general.

Consider this: At the point when Edison was halfway through the hundreds of different materials he was trying for a light bulb filament, he had not yet succeeded. At that moment, was he failing? Perhaps an onlooker would say “yes,” but surely Edison himself would have said, “No, I have SUCCEEDED at finding what materials DON’T work. I am that much closer to finding the one that DOES work.”

So what’s your story? Do you see yourself as succeeding or failing? Attitude is everything. If you’re not working, be preparing for work that you KNOW will come. If you’re getting no results from calls to agents or song submissions, know that you are eliminating the ones that won’t work, and are getting closer to a win. It’s extremely important to know that you have a choice here of whether to proceed with confidence, or whether to feel shut down and defeated. What feels better? What’s more fun? OK, the answer is obvious, but you know what? The thing that feels better also works to your advantage. If you are happily in the process of getting from where you are to where you want to be — however long that takes — then you are on your way! You will succeed! Fall in love with and be passionate about the journey!

And what about your beliefs? Do you find yourself saying, “It’s so hard to get a break in this business. The industry is so cut throat! You really have to know/be related to/pay/sleep with somebody to get your foot in the door.” If this is the tune you’re singing, chances are you will find that you are absolutely right — it will play out just like that. Your beliefs cause thoughts and self-talk that serve to manifest, before your eyes, the very things you believe in.

You may not even know you have them, and yet, they are there, working tirelessly to create for you. Once you create what you believe in, you reinforce that belief, and so you get to be right. You have gathered “evidence” that supports your belief. And what’s more, your beliefs become a filter that won’t let your senses pick up anything other than what those beliefs support.

What if you turned that around? What if you could consciously decide you would like to have another belief — one you like better? Suspend what you think is “reality” and try on a new belief for size. “I find it easy to contact the perfect people in the music industry to hear my songs, and they LOVE them!” How do you react to THAT? If you’re rolling your eyes, you probably have beliefs that are NOT serving you. Think about it. Why should it be any less true than a pessimistic view?

Try this: Make up a story that would be a dream come true, like success at your craft, and the wealth, joy and fulfillment that comes from that. Now start doing things — small things at first — but doing things that someone would do if the new belief were true. Look for evidence that the new belief is true. It may not be a big windfall or success at first, but it may be a reaction, a smile, a notion, an answered phone call. Look for magic in this process. It is at work, and there if you open your eyes to it. As you begin to gather evidence or proofs of the new belief, the old belief begins to erode. You can completely replace old, non-serving beliefs with new ones that can be your dreams come true.

Now when someone asks you how the music career is going, what will you say?

— This article draws on the work of Mike Dooley.

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