What To Do If Your Music Goals Aren’t Inspiring You
What do you do when your music goals just aren’t inspiring you? When you look at that to do list, you get this heavy feeling, or you have a knot in the pit of your stomach, or maybe you just want to run away.
You might start to think, “Maybe I really don’t want this music career as much as I thought I did. Because if I did, I’d be so excited to tackle my goals. I would jump out of bed every day ecstatic to work on music. Is this just a slump? Or is there something else going on?”
Your Music Goals And Your Journey
If you’re feeling this way, you’re definitely not alone. I want you to know that this is very common. All of us musicians go through periods like this.
When you have lofty music goals, when you have goals that are really important and integral to following your calling and your life’s purpose, you are going to have these periods of feeling disconnected with those goals. Maybe it’s because you’re just tired of the grind. Is it because you’ve got all these shiny objects around you that you think you should be focusing on.
It’s totally normal when you have a very big goal to want to run away from it, especially if you’re getting close to that breakout point. It feels scary when you’re about to do something that’s far out of your comfort zone. If it’s going to take you to the next level, it probably feels a little or even a lot uncomfortable.
Staying Consistent with Music Goals
But sometimes it’s just the grind of consistency. If we really want to accomplish something, we have to work super hard to stay consistent at it.
Remember when you first started learning how to play an instrument, how to sing properly or to write songs? You had to do a lot of work in that area. And some of it wasn’t fun. A lot of it took time when you felt like you were kind of spinning your wheels.
So know that it is always part of the game. There are always ups and downs. And you will experience super high highs and sometimes super low lows. That is just part of the journey.
When It’s Hard
I remember when I was in college and I was performing with the school’s ensemble. We used to go out on weekends and perform all over Southern California, sometimes even Northern California. For me, academics were very important. I was getting a double major so I had a lot of work to do. And I could have just decided to toss these academic goals aside to focus on music, because that’s what was taking a lot of time for me.
But I didn’t. I figured out how to do them both at the same time even though it was hard. I remember times where I was doing homework in the van late at night with a flashlight on the way home from a gig. Often I had to go find a quiet place in between gigs or when we were doing a soundcheck for somebody besides me and just get some reading done because I had very limited time.
So just know, if that’s the kind of thing you’re going through right now, that is totally normal. But if you feel like it’s something else, if you feel like you’ve been super consistent, and you’ve been very steadfast, and you felt good about it for a long time, but now there’s just something going on, I’ve got an idea of what it might be.
Measuring Your Music Goals
When I’m feeling really disconnected from my goals and really out of alignment, the reason is usually that I am using the wrong measure of success. Now don’t get me wrong. I do think it’s important to measure whether our music goals are successful. We need to have a metric for that. But a lot of times you’re using the wrong metrics.
You’re probably using vanity metrics. Vanity metrics are things like how many Facebook likes you have. How many Instagram followers do you have? How many Twitter followers on your account? How many email subscribers do you have? How many people are showing up at your shows?
Now, I’m not saying those aren’t important metrics. They absolutely are. But when it comes down to it, when you’re feeling stuck and unmotivated, those are just numbers. They aren’t something that are going to fuel you forward.
How You Should Measure Your Music Success
Where can you get the motivation you need to keep going? What should you be using as a metric to measure your music goals?
I say the best metric, especially when you’re feeling a little bit in a slump or not excited, is engagement of your fans. Measure in the times when people come up to you after shows and want to talk to you and tell you how much that song that you did or that story that you told really touched them. They explain how it reminded them of a time in their life.
Think about the people sending you direct messages on Instagram telling you how much they love your new single and how they shared it with a friend.
Consider those times when people come up to the merch table and want to buy not just one CD, but two. They want to take one home for themselves to remember the fantastic experience they had. But they also want to take one home for their friend because they weren’t able to make it and they wanted them to have even a bit of the experience that they did at your show.
And then there are those amazing emails that you get. I got a few of these recently that got me thinking about what really fuels me towards my goals. These emails say something like, “what you said on that video, or what you said in your song was exactly what I needed to hear today.”
You need to save these emails. Create a special folder for that. Go back and read them when you’re feeling like maybe you want to give up. Read them when you fear you’re not as serious about your music goals as you thought because it feels hard and it feels like maybe you’re just not that excited about it. That’s when you open up those emails and you remember the feeling that you had when you first read them.
These metrics help remind you what you are doing is having an impact on people. We are not just creating music for the sake of creating music. We are making a better world because of our music and because of our message. Don’t ever forget that. Let that light a fire under you to achieve your music career goals.
How To Improve Those Metrics
Are you getting the kind of engagement that I was just talking about? If not, I want to invite you to come to my free masterclass at www.musiciansprofitpath.com. I will teach you how to attract your 1,000 true fans without wasting valuable time and money on the wrong marketing techniques.