“Nobody’s perfect.” We hear this all the time and have probably uttered the popular phrase, yet we still try to hold ourselves to the impossible standard of perfection. While noble, aiming for perfection can be extremely detrimental to the success and progress of creatives, especially in the music industry. Keep reading to discover why you should adapt a “Done is better than perfect” mindset and start getting your work out there ASAP!
Have you ever worked for hours on a track just to end up deleting it because it’s not quite right? If you’re a human, and you should be, you’ve probably felt lost before, metaphorically speaking. And if you’re anything like me, you’ve definitely been lost in the literal sense. Creator’s block is a common ailment that affects many.
Creator’s block can seem like an insurmountable hurdle to climb, but by implementing some useful techniques, we can allow our creativity to flourish and start making real strides towards accomplishing our goals.
Instead of saying, “I have dozens of projects that I can’t seem to finish. Now they’re just sitting there giving me the middle finger,” try saying “I have a lot of melodies and riffs that I can go back to and possibly incorporate into a new piece.” Progress isn’t always linear. This is even truer when it comes to creative self-expression. Don’t hold any expectations for what you think your process should be. Sometimes it takes leaving a track and coming back to it later to give you some much needed clarity.
Sometimes in our quest to create the perfect track, we end up overcomplicating the process. When things become overly technical, the creative flow can get bogged down and that initial feeling of ingenuity fizzles out. The music making process in an expression of your inner creativity but sometimes that process can become muddled or bogged down by unnecessary plugins or complex melodies. Sometimes the best thing we can do is simplify.
Many of us can probably relate to the experience of having a vision or expectation in our minds but when we try to replicate that, it’s just not as the same. But here’s the thing: no one really knows what it’s “supposed” to sound like except for you! If you get through a piece and nothing seems glaringly bad, chances are it’s better than you think. It’s best to let your momentum carry you through to the end of a track so you at least have a rough draft. Once you have that, you can always go back through and make improvements.
Always remember that there are very few people in this world that will be as hard on you as you are on yourself, so don’t worry if a project isn’t “perfect” just yet. Don’t overcomplicate the process or try to make something fit that just doesn’t work. Yes, options are a good thing but too many can lead to factory overload. From there, it becomes all too easy to abandon your progress entirely.
Making comparisons is human nature and almost impossible to not do. No one’s journey is the same. We all come from different backgrounds that impact our behavior, thought process, and opportunities! So making baseless comparisons is a huge waste of time. Put your blinders on, maybe do a social media detox, and remember that the success of others does not equate to your own failure. If you put your content out to the public with confidence, then the right people will appreciate it and you’ll start to find yourself as a musician.
It’s hard to imagine people who we consider to be successful in music production having the same issues as us but, in an interview, Russ opens up with Gary Vee about how he was able to establish a strong social media presence and fan base. His strategy was to create as much music as possible and then release a song every single week. It’s important to note, he made sure to build up an arsenal of work first. By doing this he was able to put out music on a consistent basis, get as much feedback possible, and win some loyal supporters in the process.
Creating music is incredibly personal experience, so sharing that with others can be intimidating, but take a moment to imagine all the artists you look up to for inspiration. What if they had been too worried about people’s reactions to share their music with the world? You might not be where you are today! It’s important to share your creative passion. If not for yourself, then for others who might be in need of a little inspiration right now. If you're not sure where to start, check out these tips for boosting fan engagement on social media.
You know the saying: “It’ll get worse before it gets better”? Well, “Before you can be great, you probably have to suck!” Unless you’re Domino from X Force, nothing’s guaranteed to work out in your favor. We can’t all be inexplicably lucky and equally attractive. (Sigh)
If only! But the good news is, at least when we do get a hint of success or growth, we’ve earned it! Embrace feeling uncomfortable. Embrace the suck because the sooner you get through it, the longer you’ll be able to enjoy your success.
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Nia is a classically-trained musician with nearly ten years of
professional experience. She studied music performance for one year at
Georgia Southern University before ultimately pursuing a degree in
public relations. Combining her passion for music and knowledge of media
relations practices, Nia aims to provide musicians with the know-how to
become successful in the music industry. Stay tuned!