Christmastime is usually so crazy that it leaves me a jumbled mess. 2015 has been one hell of a weird ride, and it has gotten me really excited for a fresh start and new energy. This is why I have compiled a list of new year’s resolutions specifically designed for musicians! I’ve included some that are pretty easy and some that are a bit more challenging, but hopefully all of them will be both rewarding and FUN!
1. Write A Letter To Your Hero.
For this one, I’m talking about a real handwritten letter, with an envelope and a stamp- not just an e-mail. It has to be something that is genuine and comes from a real place. This resolution is really exciting, because you MIGHT get a response back! I know someone personally who ended up having a correspondence with his hero because he was bold enough to reach out to him. Besides, you also get the experience to express what their music or career has meant to you. So, grab your stationary set, and get with it!
2. Give Away Gear That You’re Never Going To Use Again.
As the saying goes, “Someone’s trash is another’s treasure.” Find someone who has an interest in music, and see if they can use any of the equipment that you’ve abandoned. If you are reading this, you are probably a musician so you MUST be a gear hoarder just like me. Find something that you’re not going to use anymore, and try to help out your fellow man and get more life out of that gear at the same time. I know there are a lot of parents out there that don’t have the money to invest in a new instrument for their kids, and it would be such a treat for them to have your musical hand-me-down. If you can’t afford to give it away, then sell it on craigslist and lighten your load a bit. Then you can invest in that new set of Bose speakers you’ve been longing to have.
3. Adopt A New Artist To Research Every Month.
This one is great, because you can either plan out your whole 12 months in advance, or you can choose by the month based on how you are feeling. With this goal, you can dive into the history of bands that have a huge catalog that you really want to sink your teeth into. Read books and articles about them, check out their list of albums, and by the end of the month you may have gained some new motivation or insights. Keep their albums in your car or jam out to them during your workouts. Listening is just as important as making your own music.
4. Dance For 15 Minutes EVERY DAY!
This is where a lot of you will retreat into your turtle shell. You’ll have to trust me that this one is SO much fun to do! The first couple minutes you’ll be judging yourself like no one’s business, but if you make it into minute three of this exercise, you’ll be dancing with wild abandon. I’m not just talking to the ladies out there; I’m talking to the gents as well. Let me tell you this- girls LOVE it when a guy is light on his feet, so get out your dancing shoes, throw on some Motown, and get active.
This one is helpful for a few reasons: It gets your endorphins going, works on your cardio, and is another 15 minutes where you choose to listen to music without overthinking it. This one is the perfect resolution for including other people as well. Grab your partner and twirl them around your living room. Forget those dance routine videos; set a stopwatch and pump the jam you actually want to listen to. Be silly and enjoy the small moments in life.
5. Brush Up On One Skill You Have Been Avoiding.
Every musician has that thing that we avoid practicing. Whether it is your memorization, technique, or theory knowledge, step up to the plate this year. Set aside some time and really plug away at it, because they say it takes about 40 hours to really get the hang of something. You can accomplish a ton in that trouble area if you set your mind to it.
6. Go To A Festival Or Concert You Have Been Dying To See!
Life is too short to postpone watching a life changing show. This show will not be just one day of the year in 2016, no, no. This show is going to be a memory you carry with you for the rest of your life. To make this experience even better, find a gaggle of friends to take with you and make it into an epic memory. DO plan ahead as much as you can, because it will save you tons on ticket prices, and once you have your friends locked in with tickets, they will be more likely to follow through and get the work off that is required for these types of getaways. You won’t regret it!
7. Get One Big Career Goal Accomplished.
Hopefully by the end of 2016 you’ll all be landing deals and cutting albums, but let’s start off a bit smaller, shall we? I have learned the importance of creating benchmarks in my life to keep myself productive when I’m feeling lackluster. As musicians it’s hard to know when creativity will strike or how long it will be around, so work on clarifying your big goals and stick to achieving one of them this year. Make it ambitious and work your tail off to get there, because you will be so proud once you reach your goal. Even if you don’t quite make it, you’ll be surprised at all you did accomplish in that pursuit.
Thanks for reading guys! Hopefully you can take a couple of these ideas and add them to your own list. In the meantime, I’m curious to know about your New Years “musical resolutions” for 2016! Post them in the comments below!
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