The Next Step
Do you remember the feeling when you were young of believing you could do literally anything? I do. I think back to my fifteen year old self often whenever I have a dream or ambition. Too often in today's culture it is easy to get bogged down in the logistics or to tell yourself that your dreams are impossible to achieve. That feeling back when you're young, it is a hope that your vision will be become reality. We could all do with more hope from time to time. Today I want to talk about 'taking the next step' with your goals and dreams. I hope this blog post encourages you today and that you can relate to this feeling of hoping for your future.
All of my life my family and friends have been incredibly encouraging. I am very fortunate to have people in life who are for me and want to see me succeed. Unfortunately, there have been authoritive figures in my life that have crushed my dreams and told me too many times 'you can't do that.' As a woman it has been very difficult to prove myself over the years. I have been passed up on opportunities, not taken seriously and often completely disregarded because I am a woman in music. When I was younger it never entered my mind that my sex would prevent me from getting opportunities and achieving my dreams. I always believed that aslong as I did well then doors would open. In my early days of music I was treated awfully by those who deemed women as 'lesser' musicians than men. So I went away and I taught myself even more, I was determined to work even harder to gain respect. In the long run it did work and I proved myself more and more each gig but this wouldn't of happened if I hadn't of taken the steps to do so. This issue could have discouraged me from taking the next step but I chose to prove myself and to keep going because I loved music. There may be obstacles in your way currently, they may seem too tall to tackle but have courage and know that you can achieve your goals.
There will be many people that come into your life and say 'You can't!' and that is why my advice is find people that say 'You can!' I was very overwhelmed this week when two of my dear friends helped me with producing. They didn't want anything from me, they only wanted me to learn and to grow. I know NOTHING about producing. Its actually scary! When I got my Logic Pro X trial, I was very overwhelmed and spent the first few days incredibly frustrated that I wasn't the next Finneas O'connell! I had no idea what I was doing and I told myself 'Carley, you cannot do this! Stick to performing!' After this I sat down and do what I always do when I'm sad and I watched random Youtube videos and ate ALOT of oreo cookies. Whilst watching Youtube I stumbled across a video of Ed Sheeran sharing one of the first songs he ever recorded. It was bloody awful!! Ed even said 'You aren't born with talent you have to practice and work hard.' This really hit home with me. I thought back to when I was learning guitar, I almost quit seven times within the first two months because I couldn't play bar chords!! If I'd of given up I wouldn't be where I am now. The start is so important. The fact that I am trialing Logic Pro and actually trying to learn is the first step of a long journey. It will take time but if I keep going I can achieve my goal of learning to produce my own music!
You may be reading this thinking 'that's all very well Carley but what about natural talent?' I do believe that people can be drawn to certain things and be naturally better at them. I do also believe that if you love something and have a desire to be gifted in an area than hard work can get you to a point of being talented too. People say that I am a natural on guitar but actually for me I practiced an awful lot. In my opinion I am better at piano than guitar but I had more a desire to learn guitar at a young age. Hard work is SO important and it is often the part that people don't want to do to achieve. An easy option is great but does it challenge and grow you? I wanted to just send off my songs to be mixed and mastered but then I thought 'wait a minute... I'd quite like to learn to do this.' I'm not saying I know I'll be able to but it is my next step. I have created music, I have written music and I have performed music, so now I want to see if I can do all of this in producing.
This little guy is called Chester. He is our gorgeous new puppy! I've included him in this post because A. he is really cute and B. to remind use him as an example. Chester is excited about everything! He is excited if when you return from the bathroom back to him! I always look at puppies an think 'I wish I was that happy and excited about every little thing.' Maybe I could be? Maybe I should take a page from Chester and get excited about the little things I achieve in the everyday. Another piece of advice I can give to you is set yourself little goals and work up to your bigger goals. Get excited and embrace that feeling of when you were younger and nothing seemed impossible. It sounds incredibly simple (most of my advice is) but it does work and it will encourage you to take the next step in whatever you want to do.
That concludes todays word of encouragement. I hope that it helps you and lets you know that you aren't alone. I have felt very discouraged in my career and with my dreams many times. There is no set solution or way of getting where you want to, but keep going and working hard and I'm sure you'll get there. I have achieved things in the last year that I never imagined, it wasn't through anything special, I just kept going and telling myself that I could do it. There will be times where you feel like you can't. Embrace those times and then get up and try again! If I had a £1 for everytime I said 'I'm done! I want to quit!' I'd probably be a millionaire!! I have taken the next step in what I want to do, I have started the journey, that is the most important part. Take that next step!