So in the last post, I talked about a very important lesson, which is: always be willing to learn more. Always learn that you have a lot more improvement to do for yourself. And as you will see (if you read the post), I use a first concert experience as the symbolism and the center of this all.
In this article, what I want to do is talk about a very common trap, performers and people in the “arts world” tend to fall into, and that is the trap of success. Before I jump right into my thoughts here, let me just mention that because of the industry, you can feel that you are successful even if it doesn’t reach the metrics of nation wide celebrities. If you gather a group of a few hundred people to your concert, you can get the feeling that you are a big shot.
My first advice for people that are doing well for them selves (either on a local level or nation wide level) would be that you keep on moving: never say “my audience was large enough, let’s take a day off tomorrow.” Being an artist is a job like any other. And you have an inferred duty towards yourself to treat it like it. So bottom line and the center of this advice would be: don’t get lazy!
Another thing I would say is: don’t believe that you are actually a big shot. I don’t care who you are. I don’t care if you are Taylor Swift. The success you are happy about and are proud of, belongs to the past. Please don’t dwell on the past. I hate people that sit all day on their rear ends, dwelling on things of the past, like it even matters. Notice that greatly successful people like Taylor Swift, or Bruno Mars still get up at the crack of dawn and go to work. You are never become good enough, you are never successful, you never win. You keep on becoming successful and you keep on winning. When you stop, that’s when you lose (and most of the times, it’s true even if we talk about actual results.) I won’t beat a dead horse here, but please go to work.
What’s the trap of being overwhelmed with success? Besides the laziness I talked about, and all that, success also makes you feel you are in control of things. It makes you reckless and takes all fear away. Sometimes it’s good to not be cautious and fearful as you are willing to risk and achieve more. But just because you achieved some level of success, doesn’t make you a person with no flaws and no space for improvement. I sure hope you are the best you can be, and you won’t be making any huge mistakes soon. I really do! But we are all humans, and we all make mistakes. The extent and significance of those, are mainly determined on the way you treat those situations. If you aren’t serious about what’s happening and you aren’t thinking straight, slap yourself a few times and wake up. Or failure will give you a wake up call you wished you never faced. There is no worse feeling than failing and feeling you could of done a lot more on your part to prevent it.
Lastly pride is something that comes with success. Pride is a good thing, and whoever isn’t proud of themselves has very low self esteem. It’s true: in order to make the decision to crawl out of bed and go out there, you need to have pride. When someone appears to have “the guts”, he really has the pride. I’m not talking about being a person that believes he is above all human beings. That is extremely faulty, and that person shall fail miserably. But loving the sound of your own voice sometimes, is a good thing. I see a lot of people with the lack of confidence. They don’t trust themselves. It’s wrong! Your state of psychology is so important! It plays a huge role in the end result. Having said all this though, don’t set yourself above all other humans. You will definitely be more worthy than some others, but you are still human and you should always remember that. I guess the biggest problem with pride, is again that it makes you reckless. So these negative things that follow success, are more bad for yourself than the people around you. To be frank, if you are successful, you should not care about other people’s opinions. Focus on yourself. Because you will be the first victim of a wrong doing, or a mistake due to incompetence.
Reach out to me for a constructive related discussion.