Today I rolled into work and there was a quote in our daily in/out email. It really got me thinking and I wanted to see if it would do the same for you. Here it is.
“The more you seek security, the less of it you have. But the more you seek opportunity, the more likely it is that you will achieve the security that you desire.” – Brian Tracy (Personal And Professional Development Author and Speaker)
It really made me think about how I've been playing it pretty safe for most of my life with “security” as an excuse. The few exception being joining the National Guard and quitting a foundry job to go back to school while working another job for a lot less pay – both of which, by the way, turned out to be some of the most fulfilling, cherished and “alive” feeling periods in my life.
My most recent flirtation, with things not associated with security, would have to be the exploration of my musical side. For years I dodged it because I was scared. Scared of what people would think. Scared of getting up in front of people. Scared of letting people know what is going on in my head via the songs I write. Scared if my thinning hair line was gleaming in the limelight and on and on. I was just scared.
Other than this inner knowing that I needed to do something greater than just waste away in a cubicle during the day and in front of the TV at night, I also thought about my kids. I looked at them and thought about the future. I feel that being scared is no way for a father to act. I mean how am I supposed to tell them to follow their heart and block out all of the noise if I can't do it myself? That is not the example I want to set for them (and for the record I am deathly afraid of being a hypocrite and – to keep my honest – you are welcome to call me on it any time).
Out Of Thin Air
Now since I've been implementing this type of thinking, I notice a funny thing happening. When I started looking at music as being an opportunity, things started to fall in place and continue to do so. For instance, places that I'd like to play at became available, old friends come back into my life and offer their support, I meet other artists and industry people who answer questions and provide guidance, I find all the resources necessary to help me record my CD, and I could go on and on!
The other thing I noticed was that the work I do (write and perform music) is about as fulfilling as anything I've ever experienced. It is so freakin cool to have people come up to me and tell me about how a tune of mine made them feel better about something, made them think a little more about a subject or just helped make their day better.
It is double freakin awesome to see the community that is slowly starting to arise around the music. When I play live it is surreal to be able to look out into the crowd and see old fiends, new friends and family all gathered in the same place, interacting with each other and having a good time. What more could I person want?
Bottom line, if I had stuck with the security of playing my guitar and singing my songs behind closed doors, I would not know any of this. I may not have met a good guy like Ray “Yeah Baby” Roberts. I never would have known what old friends Stacy and Marcy were up to these days. I might not know how dedicated my brother Troy, sister Heather and the rest of my family are to going above and beyond helping me out. I might never know what a great excuse playing live is to go out and party with my friends all without my wife getting mad (had to throw that in). And again, I could go on.
What a boring waste of life it would have been to have not known any of these things.
So ask yourself this “Am I playing safe in some part of my life?” And then ask yourself, “what could I be missing out on because of it?”