DISCIPLINE VERSUS INSPIRATION
Once again, hello people of the electric interweb. I think this is going to be a rather short one...or so I hope :) Let's see...
Normally I spend many hours writing an article. I have to refresh my knowledge sometimes, I have to research and fact check and then find the right words (remember that english is not my first language) and find the right "design" or format.
The idea to write about this came to my mind a few minutes ago when I came back home from my studio. On the way home I heard the Music Production Podcast with and from Brian Funk (aka AfroDJMac): It was episode #40 I believe and he was talking about how not motivation is most necessary for your artistic endeavors but discipline is.
(Check out Music Production Podcast - http://www.afrodjmac.com/podcast // the episode is called The Most Important Lesson)
This is the point that Brian is making - I absolutely share it !!!
To keep your hits coming, you can't rely on motivation, it won't always be there for you, instead rely on the discipline to simply create! ...no matter what!
You will always go through periods of missing motivation or inspiration but to utilize the times effectively when your juices are flowing, you have to work on your craft constantly...NO MATTER WHAT !
I think that can never be emphasized enough. So even without knowing where to go with your newly started track, keep working on it. Even if you don't feel like doing anything at all, you have to power through and keep them coming and if they ain't no barn burners at the end of the day, then that is absolutely fine ! But push through those times to be ready, sharp and on top of your game when your inspiration finally kicks in big time.
Brian goes deeper and talks about growth mentality and the "not yet" mindset. I encourage you to check out the whole episode.
Pssst, hey !
If you're ever as low on inspiration as I have sometimes been, take your favorite track/song and try to re-create its arrangement and structure or even its sounds, if you want to go that far. It will help you work on your technique and your understanding of music. Your skills will thank you for it.
I'll be paraphrasing now but Brian also mentioned something like this on the podcast:
The pro will not focus on the outcome, contrary to the amateur, but instead he will focus on his process of creation, he will focus on the "journey".
I realized I applied this principle throughout all the time since I first started making music, without ever noticing it as an important thing, it was second nature for me. So of course that podcasts message absolutely resonated with me when I heard it and like I said, I realized I always worked by that principle. That's why I'm writing this and although I did not come up with this article's message myself, I feel like it's an important one to share with you here.
My article about how important it is to learn to finish tracks also carries part of this message in It.
"Perfection (doesn't exist anyways) but comes from honing that craft like a good sword. You're driving it to "perfection" over time by completing your work steps and doing them again and again." (The importance of finishing tracks/songs)
This is part of the principle above. Always(!) do your work and then, at times of peaking inspiration, you will have the training, the experience and tools at hand to utilize that peak.
Don't ever see that as a waste of time.
Also Don't wait until your next wave of inspiration comes in and then start your DAW and figure something out. If you do it that way, you will actually have wasted useful time.
Amongst others, Brian also talks about Jocko Willink, who, to me, is a reoccurring figure. I heard him, as well as people like him, on the Joe Rogan Experience, sharing their strategies to overcome adversity and to push through hard times and there's always something to take away from their ideas. Those hard times don't always have to be threatening your existence, but remember, surrendering to a lack of inspiration can ultimately still cost you a career !
Now ! You know what to do, right ? Keep your blade sharpened and when you finally see that target clearly, you'll be ready to strike like there's no tomorrow.