Bob Baker's Indie Music Promotion Blog

News, notes and ideas on music marketing, self-promotion, artist empowerment and more

August 20, 2008

The Power of Habits (Don't Make This Mistake)

This morning I drove my daughter to school and once again made a mistake I didn't intend to make. It's a mistake you may also be making with your music career.

You see, Kelli started middle school last week. After six years of attended an elementary school about 10 minutes from our house, she is now in the 6th grade at the middle school, which is also not far from home.

Here's the thing. So far, every time I've driven her to the new school, I absent-mindedly take the route to her old school. Most of the drive is the same, but at one stop light I should now go straight instead of turning left.

But, without fail, I've been either lost in thought or in a conversation with her when I get to that light. And I turn left like I've been doing for years, instead of continuing straight to the new school.

As a result, it takes us longer to get to our destination, and I end up feeling a little frustrated with myself for screwing up.

What does this have to do with your music career and promotion efforts?

  • How often do you take actions based on your habits of the past ... instead of what's best for you now?

  • When do you absent-mindedly go through the motions and take the long route to your music goals ... instead of waking up and realizing there's a shorter and better path?

  • In what areas of your life do you operate on auto-pilot ... instead of evaluating your actions and the results you're getting?

  • How much frustration do you experience because you are stuck in old behavior patterns?
To push the school metaphor even futher ...
  • Are you still living your life with an elementary school mindset ... instead of graduating to the next level of your personal growth?
Your homework assignment: Get out a pen and paper, do some soul searching, and honestly answer the five questions above.

Who knew that the simple act of driving my daughter to school would give me such an education :-)


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posted by Bob Baker @ 8:49 AM   4 comments


At Aug 20, 2008 11:56:00 AM, Anonymous Will Kriski said...

Great post Bob. I've recently done some soul searching on my own weaknesses/habits and have come up with an approach. I think many musicians do the same thing I do such as:
-trying to do everything yourself because you have some computer skills or because you don't want to spend any money on your career/business
-not being consistent in actions such as marketing (blog entries, posting to forums, etc)

If there are things you need to be doing on a consistent basis that you are not following through on, or you have produced less than stellar quality in your music or other materials, I suggest you get help even if it means paying money. This should be seen as an investment and requires a belief in yourself, that you will be successful.

At Aug 20, 2008 4:36:00 PM, Anonymous Steven Cravis said...

Excellent points, Bob. I constantly try to see the newest things or trends that are coming and prepare music to be ready in the future for big opportunities. Much along the lines of what Dr. Deepak Chopra described as "success = when preparation meets opportunity".

At Aug 20, 2008 4:40:00 PM, Anonymous Thirsty Howell said...

Call it a Habit, Pattern, Rut?

I think deep down we all realize that if we keep doing the same things - but expect different results, we are fooling ourselves.

Bob - why don't you try taking your daughter on a totally different route to school. Leave a little early and you might find something interesting along the new path (even if it is just a few extra minutes with your daughter)
Peace, Thirsty Howell

At Aug 21, 2008 1:17:00 PM, Anonymous Brandon Chance said...

Haha.. I've definitely been there. but I think you should try what Thirsty said.. The fact that we make routines limits us from seeing the other possabilities.


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