I’ve been covering a lot of ground lately. I’m editing videos, cranking out blogs, I’m jogging now, I’m reading tons, listening to podcasts; I feel extremely active and busy. And most importantly I feel in control of my energy and time, very little goes to waste. Even when I’m hanging out having yard beers for hours on a Saturday it’s because I’ve earned, it’s a chosen use of my time because I’ve got so much other stuff done that I can relax guilt-free.
What I can’t seem to do is get any songs out.
Jogging isn’t a matter of discipline quite as much as I thought. There is a struggle to get out of bed on time especially when I have to be ready to leave for work at 9:30, but something I read years ago in a psych magazine has been perfectly helpful. It’s called enclothing theory and the way it was illustrated was that rather than imagining being at the gym when you’re trying to get out of bed just focus on getting dressed. The article went further about how dressing in a military style will cause people to make more honorable choices and dressing in expensive clothes can actually cause you to spend more money but the work out thing stuck with me even though it was a year before I started working out. So whenever I get up I put on my work out clothes and once I’m wearing them it feels stupid not to work out.
Which I guess means I should focus on just picking up the guitar.
I had a conversation about the blog a while ago that has stayed with me. A friend told me they didn’t have the patience to write for themselves. And my answer didn’t occur to me at the time but I realize the blog doesn’t come from my patience. Because I have no patience, it’s one of my lowest strengths. And yet I put a lot of time into drafting and editing blogs because I’m driven to get them done and out. It’s actually and act of impatience as I see.
Whereas I think song writing does take patience. In any song you get to the point where you start feeling like the idea was never good in the first place, where you wish you’d done something else with your time, and you wouldn’t want anyone to hear it. If a song gets over that tipping point and I get excited for someone to hear it then I get the drive and it gets done.
There isn’t a reliable way to tap into that feeling though. If I come up with an idea when I’m with someone and they get stoked for it I still may never even start it. Although I always intend to.
Editing videos is new and fun whereas songwriting feels like obligation.
Yet I know that songwriting is the one thing that makes me feel like me. Like I’m living my life.