The breakdown on getting my very first blog up and running!  

Okay, okay, that does it!  An irresistible urgency to get a blog started at last!  I’ve always loved creative writing, and blogging should come naturally to me, but I keep getting hung up on all the techie stuff and the endless time consumed figuring it out.  However, thanks to Ariel Hyatt’s book “Music Success in Nine Weeks”, I am making fair progress at clearing the various barriers to entry into the new millennium, albeit a decade or so late.

Oh yeah, the irresistible urgency: Ariel threw down the gauntlet and challenged the proud owners of her book to a blog contest, of which the grand prize is a major PR campaign, and I’d sure give my eye teeth to win that.  However, since according to Mr. Murphy, solutions tend to create a whole new suite of problems, that incentive creates urgency to get various other obstreperous waterfowl in a row in order to be positioned to make effective use of the prize, should I win it, which I have every intention of doing, so “Ducks, Hark!”  Here comes another Christmas/New Year’s weekend(s) spent working like a maniac…..

Anyway, I love that book, and am delighted to have an opportunity to share it with everyone!  It can certainly be applied to professions other than music.  The book started off with a very helpful exercise in getting focused and organizing your thoughts, getting to the heart of what you want to accomplish, and breaking it down into manageable goals, and then the important part: writing them down and putting them in a place where you can see them every day.

The exercise commenced by having us write down five things that we accomplished, however stellar or innocuous, and I found that to be an exceptional source of motivation, especially on days when I kept a blank piece of paper close at hand (or Word doc open on the computer) and wrote things down as I accomplished them.  Another thing I noticed when reading through my daily lists of “Five Little Victories” was that the most spectacular successes seemed to occur on the shittiest days when I felt like all I had accomplished was to simply survive!  The most memorable occasion took place on one of the absolute crappiest days I’ve had in a very long time.  Late that evening as I was giving my email a final check before going to bed, hopefully to forget about everything that happened that day, I had a message from someone at a big event production company in Belgium inquiring of our availability and rates to perform at a major corporate event in Brussels next spring!  That was certainly precipitated by the arduous work I’ve been doing over the past year which seems so pointless and devoid of tangible results most of the time.

However now I understand why my goals aren’t coming true, or at least not at the pace that I want them to:  Although I did write them down, I got hung up at the point of making them pretty and putting them in a visible place so that I could remember them!  I also did not prioritize getting up earlier every morning (Hell, I’m a musician for Pete’s sake!) so that I’d have time to revisit them on a daily basis and write out a series of tasks to accomplish during the day in order to make them happen…Mea culpa!!  If I had done that, then no doubt I would be gleefully sharing my results now instead of lamenting the lack of them.

This is so dead-simple – why is it so difficult to commit to and make happen?  Are we as humans so completely hard-wired to sabotage our prospects of being successful by getting sidetracked by every stupid thing that comes up, or letting all of our time and energy get consumed rushing around like chickens with our heads cut off putting out “fires” all day – things we are conditioned to attach great importance to, but in the big picture are relatively unimportant?  Well, documenting this sad state of affairs motivates me to get busy correcting it, so here I go!

In fact, I’ll start right now with figuring out what, if anything, good I made happen today:

  1. I got up and got my husband to the hospital on time this morning for his liver CT scan (that’s quite an accomplishment given the early “call”.  In case you’re wondering, that jackass seems to have blown out his liver with his rockstar-style alcohol abuse over too many years.)
  2. I sustained the progress I have been making in reconnecting with old friends and relatives on Facebook and engaging in regular dialog with them, turning them into “new” friends that I am excited about getting reacquainted with (needless to say, I’m getting precious little else done while at my day job!)
  3. I started this blog!  (Hopefully I will be able to add “I POSTED this blog!” and “I entered the CyberPR Blog-off in the immediate future!)
  4. set up LastFM radio site
  5. Hey, look!  I got my five little successes for today written down, and there’s still time for more!
  6. Bonus point:  I finally got that thing done at work that I’ve been blowing off for two days.
  7. While we’re at it, I followed up with ArielPublicity today to get a SNAFU straightened out with getting my upgrade to “Music Success in Nine Weeks”, version 2.

Next step: figuring out how to open a WordPress blog site (and customize it), and then how to get my blog updates to auto-post to my various and sundry other sites!