Finding Your Balance
By J.P. Kallio
When your work is something you love, which is the case with many musicians, it can be hard to switch off. I talked about the importance of taking a break in past blog posts. But lately I have been taking a little bit different look at it all. What I think is even more important than taking a break, is finding the balance in our everyday life.
Being a full-time musician can be a crazy busy job. That is why you do need to love it with every last bone in your body. If you don’t, you’ll be heading into a burnout in no time at all. There are a lot of late nights, early starts, endless miles and when you’re not on tour or playing the promotion side will keep you glued to your computer all hours.
What the years have taught me is that time is one of your most important commodities. To use it wisely is probably your first step to success. Here’s the thing though, you can only do so much in one day and even more so you can only perform at your best only so long before you need a break. Our brains were never designed to work nonstop for 12 hours at their peak performance. It’s the little breaks throughout the day that lets you recharge.
Got a lot of tasks you need to finish in one day? Split them into blocks and allow yourself breaks between the tasks. Just remember to get back at it and not get side tracked to watching cute cat videos for hours. And at the end of the day, take some time just to unwind. Read something unrelated to your work, watch a movie or I might even say watch some crap on TV. But all of this works as a great way to unwind if you don’t overdo it. Spend time with your friends or loved ones, go out for a nice dinner and get a good night’s rest.
And yeah we all talk about the importance of exercise, but it is amazing how in the corporate world companies still don’t make time for it during the day. Sure many companies have their own gym for their workers, which is a step in the right direction. But the optimal time for your exercise to benefit your work is actually midday, not first thing in the morning or after work. As most of us artists work for ourselves, we can make time for this. And it can be something as simple as 15 min walk after your lunch. You will be more energized for the rest of the day.
For some of us music can be a sideline. In this case, it can be even harder to find the time to work on your promotion or music itself. Proper planning becomes even more important here. Schedule tasks when you know you are more likely to do them, rather than lounge on a couch after a long day at work.
The truth is building a career in music takes long time and lots of hard work. Often it can feel very overwhelming, but proper planning, determination and hard work it can be done. Just make sure you don’t forget to take care of yourself as well.