Essential Secrets 81: Define Success
Knowing What Matters to You
Everyone knows what success is. Success is when you succeed! However, only you can define what success means for you. Feelings of success are highly personal, and you should develop your own definition of success so you know when you achieve it.
In general, there are two ways to choose your definition of musical success:
1. Using external cues like a reviewer’s opinion about your performance or the amount you were paid for a gig.
2. Focusing on internal benchmarks that other people may not even recognize, such as mastering a particular piece of music or developing a new technique that lets you be more expressive.
The external signs of success are public and easier to see, but the internal have more meaning. The main difference between these two is who decides when you’re successful. You define and control internally-defined success. The external is determined by other people. Your musical life might be difficult if you let other people decide whether or not you are successful.
One thing is clear: If you do not define success, you will never feel satisfied with your bass-playing abilities. You could be achieving all your goals and still feel frustrated. You need to know that you’re successful when you achieve every milestone—even if you still have dozens of musical goals on your list. Learn to enjoy the successes along the way, so you can feel confident and appreciate the progress you’re making.
Defining your own successes, and feeling good about every one of them, will keep you motivated to return to your bass every day. The only way to keep learning at an accelerated pace is to stick to your practice regimen. Keeping to your daily schedule is crucial to your success—no matter how you define it.
Books by David Motto:
THE TEN MINUTE
FOR ELECTRIC BASS
COMPLETE 3-VOL. SET