This article comes from life & career coach, Ariane Paras. With 15 years experience in the music business, she supports artists and music professionals to help them reach their goals and perform at their best. She helps them find clarity and direction so they can get to the next level of their career and reach their goals. In this helpful piece, she discusses 5 common mistakes than can stop artists from achieving those goals and provides tips for overcoming them. Let’s dive in…
5 Mistakes That Stop You From Achieving Your Goals
You know how life can start to resemble an unexciting routine, in which you find yourself doing pretty much the same things day in, day out… wash/rinse/repeat? Granted, working in music means there’s a bonus cycle of play time, but even if you’re an artist, a studio-flight-gig lifestyle can quickly become “same old, same old”.
It can feel like you’re drifting along down the river of life, and despite a few rapids here and there, suddenly 5 years have passed… and you’re pretty much in the same place. Not that this place is inherently bad, but it may feel like something’s missing.
Do you know what’s probably missing?
Knowing what you REALLY want out of life and identifying the specific goals to get you there.
If you do have goals, chances are it’s hard to reach them or maybe they don’t make you as happy as you thought they would. To avoid this happening to you, here are some common mistakes to watch out for.
Your Goals Are Not Really Yours.
Imagine you have a goal to start earning a certain salary before you’re 35, or to get married, or to play in 3000 capacity venues or to be super popular on Instagram. You may well reach those goals and STILL be unfulfilled, unhappy, and wondering what the hell went wrong.
That’s because you may have set the wrong goals for yourself: goals that are based on other people’s desires, agendas or what society pushes down your throat, or else goals that don’t reflect your own values and what YOU find important.
Not only will these goals be a pain to work on, you’ll also have wasted time and effort in the pursuit of things that are ultimately meaningless to you.– Make sure you follow your true desires and remember we’re all different. No goal is better than another. All that matters is that your goal fits with who you really are.
Sharpen your skills…
Your Goals Are Too Vague.
Let’s say you want to get promoted, or to be represented by a top agency or management company.
This goal could actually have multiple underlying meanings. It may mean that you want to earn 20% more by the end of the year, or maybe that you want to choose the exact projects you get involved in, or otherwise that you’re aiming to collaborate with someone who’s great at what they do and also a pleasure to work with.
In short, be sure to specify exactly what it is that you’re looking for, and in detail, or you risk getting something else entirely.
As Chuck Palahniuk once said, “If you don’t know what you want, you end up with a lot you don’t.”
You Don’t Have A Plan.
If your goal is to ‘be healthier’ and you wanna make this happen, for-real-this-time, you need to be a wo(man) with a plan. Once you’ve defined what ‘healthier’ looks and feels like to you, you need to figure out what are the best ways for you to achieve this – whether that involves exercise, diet, reducing your alcohol or drug intake or something else.
- Decide on some specific sub-goals and action steps, and set milestones to help track your progress. This way you can celebrate when you reach them!
- With that in place, it’s gonna be much easier to achieve your goal (and KNOW that you’ve achieved it) rather than spending months trying to be ‘healthier’ and never knowing if you really are.
Madonna once said that she kept the same goal she’d set as a girl: to rule the world. You bet she divided that grand goal into smaller goals to get where she is today! I mean, where do you even start when you plan world domination? If you’re Madonna, it starts with hanging out with the influencers of that time (the underground DJs) and getting them to listen to your demo. #selfmadewomanwithaplan
You Go It Alone.
Sure, your other half and your friends want the best for you, but they also have their own lives to live and there’s only so much they can do to help you achieve your goals.
In some cases, your goals may even go against THEIR interests. For example: like when you’re wanting to reduce or eliminate naughty stuff and they’re used to having you as their partner in crime, they may not be quite so keen for you to change your habits.
It’s important to be accountable for your own progress, but also helpful to surround yourself with supportive people, whether it’s in the form of others who have the same objectives as you (a gym buddy, for example), apps that help you stick to your goals, or mentors.
You Wanna Quit Too Soon.
Man, good goals are neither easy nor quick to achieve. When setbacks or obstacles appear, it’s easy to throw in the towel and find excuses as to why you can’t carry on.
This is where your secret weapons are useful: a killer mindset, plan Bs, and motivation techniques to stay focused and committed.
Successful people succeed because they persevere in the face of obstacles. At various points they may lag behind or fall down, but they pick themselves up and try again. And again. And again. Imagine if, as a baby trying to learn how to walk, you had given up at the very first hurdle: you’d still be crawling now, and let me tell you, it’s very tricky to disco dance on all fours!
Have tools at the ready, so when the going gets tough you keep advancing, instead of giving up way too early.
When you set clear & obtainable goals, have a plan to get you there, know strategies to overcome obstacles and are able to build an effective support network, achieving your goals will be MUCH easier. More importantly, the process will be a lot more enjoyable. (If you want some of that in your life, click here to check out how I can support you so that you can start to make your goals a reality.)
It’s been said that a good goal should scare you a little and excite you a lot. Here’s to bringing some excitement and purpose into your life, and moving in the direction of your dreams!