New Year resolutions for musicians are hard to keep. I could write a book about failed new year resolutions – from rehearsals and gigs to composing and recording projects. It’s hard to keep up your momentum.

We all have legit reasons for stopping – breakdowns in planning, unforeseen complications, or attempting too much. However,  each new year is an opportunity to learn from mistakes and press on toward our musical goals.

Some new year resolutions for musicians are essential.

Musicians can grow and learn from failures and mistakes.

When we learn from your past, it can renew our drive and focus.

We aren’t trying to be perfect, but always working to improve. After all, if we aren’t disturbed by weak performance, there is no motivation to improve.

So, jere are 7 new year resolutions for musicians to bank on. These fundamental items can keep you on track. And yes, I’ve learned them all the hard way.

1. Finish what you start

Generally, most musicians juggle too many projects.

We are involved in multiple gigs that pull us in so many directions.

Unfortunately, our personal goals get put on the back burner by gigs that pay more money.

Getting paid is important. But don’t lose your dream in the mix. Keep making strides toward it. Keep the faith and finish the things that are important to you.

2. Learn to say NO!

You can’t do everything.

Sometimes you must protect your time (and sanity) and decline invitations.

Many artists desire your expertise and being the kind soul you are, you want to help them out. There isn’t time to help everybody. Look in the mirror and practice saying this… “NO!” Try it again, deep breath… “NO!”

Believe it or not…

  • The world will keep spinning.
  • Gigs will happen without you.
  • Showcases and recordings will succeed without your presence.
  • Songs will be written despite your absence.

It’s painful to admit, but we can’t do everything.

3. See the big picture

Learn to think long range.

Your decisions must be for the future, as well as today. Big goals are reached by lots of little goals, one step at a time.

There are many things to juggle and you have to keep it all organized toward the BIG goal. Keep your eye on the prize. If you don’t, nobody else will.

4. Get a hobby that isn’t music

It’s easy to think that music is everything you need.

True, it is usually fun, creative, rewarding and exciting. But, it’s also healthy to take a break. Find and grow other interests to enhance your life.

Doing something new and differenct can clear your head and keep you fresh.

5. Be excellent at something

You should specialize.

What is your unique musical gift?If you aren’t sure – nobody else will either.

It is vital to be excellent at something.

Today, I do a lot of musical gigs. But, for many years I was known as a vibraphonist. The skills I developed opened doors for me. Being too general leads to old saying, “jack of all trades, master of none.”

6. Build a team

I just returned from the Association of Performing Arts Professionals (APAP) conference. It was spectacular.

However, there were many personal factors that almost kept me from going. Without a team, I could not have made it.

Three days before leaving, I found an inch of water flooding our newly remodeled studio. Plus, one of my daughters was diagnosed with the flu and I was feeling pretty rough too. Then, the van was diagnosed with a $700.00 repair.

Plus, if that’s not enought, my wife had just broken her foot and couldn’t function by herself. It was a terrible time to leave town for 4 days.

Thankfully, my band, Here Comes the Sun, a celebration of the Beatles music, was taking care of business.

They did it all: Countless phone calls, emails, texts, reservations, decisions and details.  Our band excelled, despite all the craziness. That’s the power of a team.

Also, EPIC Arts Managements, our management team, promoted their artists the way most of us only dream about. Thanks Ron & Melissa!

7. Smell the coffee

You’re not superman or woman.

Learn to rest, experience the moment and enjoy life today. Music leads to incredibly rewarding situations and relationships. Don’t miss them for the deadlines, notes and hustle.

There’s always another gig, but friends and relationships are gold. It is important to be the best musician you can be, but just as important to be a great friend and team player.

It’s easy to always be anticipating and preparing for an upcoming gig, and miss the beauty of now. Don’t just slam your coffee – smell it.

New Year Resolutions for Musicians – Biz & Personal

These should help whatever your doing with music. Don’t try to reinvent the wheel.

  1. Finish what you begin
  2. Learn to say no
  3. See the big picture
  4. Get a hobby
  5. Build a team
  6. Smell the coffee

New year resolutions for musicians can differ greatly according to your situation. But there are fundamental steps to success with your music in any environment. Here’s to making the right new year resolutions to achieve your musical dreams this year. Cheers!