Transition Period
How does getting ready for the new year look like to you?
A time to reset and plan new goals.

During the year 2021, we have collectively battled between staying at home and playing it
safe, and living life normally, however that may look to us. As a creative myself, the
uncertainty of getting up on stage and performing love, and simply sending a video
submission from home for my degree, has been a frustrating process.

In some ways, It has been quite refreshing to know that people are flexible to change a little bit. Rules and expectations do not seem quite as enforced at University, and creatively in general. It has been nice to simply alleviate some of the pressure of constantly moving all the time.

With social media providing us with content, we can feel a mixture of motivated and
intimidated (I know I do). Highlight reels that show you the perfect “morning routine”.
Endless journals and planners on offer, promoting “getting your life together”, can be a
daunting process. I must say, 2021 has taught me many things, but slowing the pace down and saying no to certain things, has been one of the biggest lessons.

Setting creative intentions
I had the intension, of writing out all of my goals in various categories, such as music, fitness and writing. Creating an engaging and colourful vision board seemed like the perfect way to do this, and yet I kept putting the task off. Now things are open and a new version of normal, It seemed like a logical next step, to throw myself into all the opportunities, since we have been deprived of face to face action for so long. Yet again, I was putting it off. Measuring realistic goals in music can be hard to get right, as well as making sure that your mental health is in a good place to make these moves.

I found myself writing lists of organisations and open mic night opportunities, and music
societies at University that I wanted to join. After a long winded process of planning, I
assessed all of the musical objective and organisations that I wanted to immerse myself in, and thought, this is not realistic. Although, it is great t get involved, meet new people and redress music in a collaborative way, it is essential to check in with yourself.
For me, placing myself with people in a music based setting, can be quite anxiety provoking.

Although it is motivating to be around other creatives, finding a structure that moves you
forward as a creative can be overwhelming. It is no secret that progressing in the arts, is not a linear process. There will be times that may feel stuck and other chapters that feel like everything is progressing at once.

Finding balance in 2022
Instead, I cut down my list to organisations that I was familiar with, ones that I knew I would feel safe with. This way, I can still network and make music, but at a pace that works for me. Potentially, when the pressure of a “January Reset” calms down, the concept of networking and being social, will feel more approachable.

 

Finding out what Music means to me
Music does not need to have an end goal or a number attached to it. Music can simply be
what it is, sound. Growing up, I only saw music as an escape route from day to day stress,
but never considered music to being something measured by success. Success, again, will
present itself in different forms. Singing was naturally, a part if my day to day ritual, without a thought of “what do I want to achieve here”. , writing in general, for the sake of singing, because it made me feel good, organically led to song writing.

On reflection, this is something I want to apply to my daily ritual again in 2022. Although, those days were a little less stressed, we could all learn something from simply being creative for the sake of enjoyment. Starting University, although an amazing place to meet like minded people, has an essence of competitive nature. While some promote upcoming work and scheduled performances, others work behind the scenes. It makes me question where I stand in this field of reaching for a particular goal. Thoughts about being overlooked because I am not sharing enough, or sharing too much, and coming across too “full of myself”, can be exhausting.

Why did you start music?
Reverting back to childhood days. Singing acapella in my bedroom, and at times with a microphone, remind me of why I started to begin with. Without the mask of social media and the scheduled in performances, with bright lights, a minimalistic approach to music can be so much more rewarding.

Goals are now, are far more based around what makes me feel good, as opposed to what
looks successful on Instagram. This could be as simple as making time, one morning a week to not set an alarm, and let myself sleep in to whatever time my body wants to. As
someone who constantly feels the need to be productive, taking rest days has an inevitable goal for me. This could also show in the form of saying “no” to others socially.

It is easy to get swept up into saying yes with the flippant social events, so my goal is to be a little mindful with regards to my well being. Equally, one of your goals could be to frame out some more time for those that you haven’t seen, or been emotionally available for. The point is, it can all be changed and shifted, and they do not need to be performative changes, in order for them to be effective. Let’s aim to not load on too much pressure, enjoy the present and be mindful that our own self care comes first. Yes, I have goals on a practical level, but the pandemic has definitely highlighted things that I should have had prioritized a long time ago.

Milli-Rose

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