May 9, 2024

Struggles As A Musician And Over-Coming The Obstacles Of Being A Creative

Creatives are different.  I should know because I am one. At times my emotions ebb and flow like tidal eddies.  And I am distracted by the thoughts and “noise” in my head — the voices we all hear that want to tell us how or what to think.  Even now while writing this at 4:00 in the morning, there’s that voice whispering in my ear, “who really cares about ANY of this, Sarah?! Just go back to bed!!”  And sometimes I let my emotions get the best of me and am pulled in different directions and it’s just so hard to focus. Like, man, I just want to get to the gig! Can’t we just get to the fun stuff??! It’s hard for me to sit still. I know it’s good for me to meditate, but really, like, WHEN?? I remember in grade school I took home a report card on which the teacher hand-wrote “lacks self-control.” And my dad called me a “wiggle worm.”  Trying to sit still in the doctor’s office one day when I was a little kid my mom hissed at me to sit still or she was going to tell the doctor that I had St. Vitus Dance syndrome!  I guess I have a busy and curious mind.  And that’s the thing about creatives … but, man, you don’t want us piloting your airplane!

Plus, I’m a dreamer … another “tick” on my report card in grade school: “daydreams.”  But I have come to accept for myself that all the energy and the free-flowing thought is a positive gift that makes me who I am and when channeled helps me achieve things and express things I thought I’d never accomplish. I think I feel things and see things that many other people don’t. It makes me attentive to the audience, I can “feel” and “read” the room and connect in ways that others may not.  It’s hard for me to play background music in a quiet venue, because by nature, I want to connect at a deeper level. Just give me a stage and a mic, and when my band is hot, it’s the greatest experience in the world for me. I feel alive!

But as with so many things in life, these positives can be negatives.  You ask, how do I practice? Well, it’s definitely a challenge for me. I now sure wish I hadn’t, but when I was ten years old, I gave up piano after two years because the discipline of practicing when my friends were outside playing was too much for me. How many times have you heard that? So, I try to carve out time every day to practice and I my personal goal is to not let a day go by without having touched my guitar because it always leads to playing for even just a little bit. 

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