Why healthy habits matter
One of the more common stereotypes associated with musicians is the reckless, drug-addicted party animal. Unfortunately, much of this image is enforced by the way some music makers choose to spend their free time.
The truth is, though, that you don’t have to play into that cliche. Debauchery, destruction, and unhealthy habits are bad for you in the long run – both as a musician and as a person.
If you want to be more professional, organized, and, in the end, successful, you should try to develop repeated behaviors that facilitate those positive traits. In other words, you should try to develop healthy habits.
4 healthy habits every musician should develop right now
To help push you and your music career in the right direction, I’m sharing these 4 healthy habits that all musicians should develop. They’re simple and easy to repeat, so they won’t take long to evolve from new behaviors to helpful healthy habits. If you’re tired of spinning your wheels and you’ve been looking for something positive to replace your old bad habits, get started on these healthy habits ASAP.
1. Spend lots and lots of time outside being active.
I view nature as a wonderful facilitator of the arts. Here’s why:
- Being active in nature inspires some of your best and most creative ideas.
- Being active in nature can help increase your focus.
- Being active in nature can also produce increased energy and enthusiasm in all parts of your life, including your musicianship.
- Finally, and most important, being active in nature can inspire new songwriting ideas.
The best part? You don’t even have to spend a lot of time outside. It’s now proven that walking in a green space for a mere 25 minutes will boost your creativity.
2. Ditch any creative dependencies.
If you are dependent on certain substances or conditions just to write music or “be” a musician, now is the time to stop.
Your musicianship should happen naturally. Make sure you can create at any time, without depending on anything else to make it happen.
Your creativity comes from within you. While the presence of certain people, places, or things might inspire increased output, the absence of those people, places, or things shouldn’t cause decreased output.
3. Embrace early mornings as the best time to do your thing.
I know it sounds like a ridiculous idea, but mornings are actually an excellent time to unleash your creativity. In fact, recent research shows that the best time to write and create is early in the morning.
If you can get up and moving early enough, you’ll find lots of energy and a clear mind waiting for you. Some folks believe they can only do the creative thing late at night, and for certain night owls, that might be true.
But I urge you to try mornings instead. The clarity and freshness of a new day will work wonders for your body, mind, and creativity.
4. Spend time each day meditating, praying – or just relaxing and thinking.
Sometimes the mental clutter we accumulate during the day clogs our creativity. All the doubts, fears, and worries we gather can leave us flat out exhausted, with little to no energy left for creating. As musicians, this is a very negative place to be.
To counter this, spend a few minutes a day in calm isolation. It might be meditation. It might be prayer. Or it might be you simply sitting there and focusing on something positive for ten minutes.
However you do it, and whatever you call it, you can expect the following benefits of sitting in silence: a greater sense of clarity and control, less anxiety about your musical ambitions, and an increased awareness of yourself as a songwriter, musician, and creator. Sounds good to me.
Need more convincing? Check out this superb video by David Eby, a.k.a. “The Inspired Musician.” In it, he perfectly sums up the benefits of meditation for musicians.
So, what healthy habits do you suggest?
I’m always looking for more ways to fine-tune my craft while also improving myself as a person. The habits described above work for me, but what works for you? Feel free to share in the comments any healthy habits that have worked for you.