week 43: purpose
My self-help quote for the week is from Liz Danzico: “Learning to play music is an long exercise learning to be kind to yourself. As your fingers stumble to keep up with your eyes and ears, your brain will say unkind things to the rest of you. And when this tangle of body and mind finally makes sense of a measure or a melody, there is peace. Or, more accurately, harmony."
Learning to play music is a long exercise learning to be kind to yourself. Gosh, isn't that true! I took piano lessons, voice lessons, played in orchestra, played in marching band, played guitar, grew up in a whole family of musicians and still I can't seem to grasp the concept of being kind to yourself. You can probably relate, we all want to be good at what we do. Sometimes we don't want to put in the effort. Sometimes we do anyway, and still we don't meet our own expectations. For me, it's a lot of "I should know how to sing this," and "I don't even want to listen to me, why would anyone else want to listen to me?"
But still we show up and keep working anyways, because it's not like we can just stop doing the things we're passionate about. That's not (nor has it ever been) an option! It's taking me a long time to learn how to be patient both with the part of me that doesn't measure up, and with the part of me that's holding the bar too high. That's a lot of patience, a lot of self-grace that I don't know if I have. It's a lot of effort to not take yourself so seriously, especially when working on something that's really important to you. But if the alternative is to not work at all, I'd much rather kick myself in the pants and square up!
Right now my studio is in my bedroom, because we're putting a bathroom in our basement...where the studio was originally. There's been a lot of shuffling around, but finally sitting down to plug out this week's track has been a refresher course on being kind to myself. Also, it's hard to take yourself too seriously when you're covering Justin Bieber.