By Thomas DeVoy
"Tell me who you're hanging out with and what books you're reading, and I can tell you what kind of person you will be in five years"
I don't know who said this and I probably botched the entire thing but I think it holds a lot of truth.
I recently started tracking the types of food and the amount I have been consuming. I ate out almost every meal, not only hurting my wallet; but also my body. It was incredible how regular of a customer I was at Taco Bell. After about a week of strict dieting, my friends we're already starting to comment about me looking more healthy. At which point I subconsciously decided "I have arrived" and spent the next couple days relapsing into old habits.
I think diet and exercise is great because you can see physical results. If something isn't working, you can trial and error until you see the results you're looking for.
The same concept in theory, should apply to achieving our goals as an artist. It's not that easy to determine if what you are doing is working, and physical results are a lot harder to see.
Big dreams require big actions.
How you spend your time now will dictate the person you will be tomorrow. Here are some things I have learned (from smarter and more successful people than myself) to help you along your journey.
1. READ BOOKS AND LISTEN TO PODCASTS.
This is HUGE. If you're not moving forward than you're moving backwards. There's no "like riding a bike" scenario. If you don't continue to learn and apply it regularly than you're going to loose it. For me personally, Dale Partridge and Seanwes are the two main influencers for me. I pay monthly subscriptions for deeper content because I know the knowledge is valuable. If you want to continue to grow than you're going to need to find resources that can help you.
2. PRACTICE A SECONDARY SKILL.
Creativity flows between all mediums. And there are a ton of workouts to exercise your creative muscles. If you focus on something for too long you're likely to burn yourself out, even if what you are doing is something you love. Take some time to focus on a side passion you might have and get some creative energy flowing. You might find coming out of that time that you start to have great idea's about some of your more dominant priorities.
3. GRAB A MENTOR AND DON'T LET GO.
You need people in your life to influence you. Find someone who is succeeding at what you want to do and buy them coffee. They will more than likely be willing to share their passion and are excited to see someone as fired up about it as they are. But there's a part two. This person needs to be someone who you can trust. You need to allow your mentor to speak into your life and trust that their advice is valuable. Sometimes that might make you angry. But trust me, if you find the right person, they will KNOW WHAT THEY'RE TALKING ABOUT. Learn to take their coaching and apply it to your own passion.
4. SET BIG GOALS.
It is entirely within your reach to achieve your dreams. Take a look at the big picture of where you want to be. Write it down and set a date of completion. Then list all of the things that are required to achieve the big goal, set realistic dates to complete all of those things and STICK TO THEM. Think about it like a job. Schedule yourself to "go to work" and actually SHOW UP.
5. DON'T GIVE UP.
There comes a point where you should give up and refocus on something else. But don't give up too quickly. Things will go great for a while and then down the road SOMETHING WILL GO WRONG. It could be a financial issue or people may not respond to your idea as quickly as you might have hoped, but don't turn back at the sight of hardship. If you want it, go for it! There's going to be conflict and struggles along the way. That's life. Things won't come to you overnight. The road is long and bumpy, but if you can manage to stick it out, you might just create something sustainable that you are really proud of.
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