By putting songwriting into your daily calendar, you give your songwriting a sense of purpose and importance.
Almost everything significant that you do in life is something that you plan to do. It’s part of the daily calendar that you write down or keep in your smart phone. Whether it’s your job, the classes you attend, or going to your weekly guitar lesson, you know that it’s going to get done because it’s written into your schedule. Keeping a calendar means “This is important.” So here’s a quick question for you: does songwriting ever make it to your calendar?
When you go to bed at night, you know all of the important things that you’ll be doing the next day. All of the other things –grabbing a cup of coffee in the middle of the day, stopping and chatting with a friend, shopping at a store because you’ve seen that they’re having a sale — these are the things we don’t necessarily know we’re going to do until we do them.
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Many songwriters treat the writing of music with the same level of importance that they treat picking up a chocolate bar. If you find yourself frequently suffering from writer’s block, the lack of a daily schedule is probably one of the most likely causes.
When your day is done and you’re crawling into bed, do you usually know when you’re going to be doing songwriting the next day? If not, you should.
If you work full-time, most of your days will look very similar. That can help you schedule songwriting, because you know that it’s likely going to happen in the evening. But if you do shift work, or if you’re a student, one day will often look very different from the next. That makes the keeping of a songwriting schedule even more important.
So before you go to bed tonight, do the following: Take out your calendar and create a 1-hour block of time tomorrow that is your uninterrupted songwriting time. It needs to be a time that you won’t be distracted by friends, family or work commitments.
Now do that for four more days this week. The ultimate aim is to find five days every week for which you can schedule songwriting. And it’s ideal if those daily times are the same for every week. In other words, an example might be that your Monday songwriting time is always 4pm – 5pm, your Tuesday songwriting time is always 7 pm – 8 pm, and so on.
Once you’ve done that, you’ve done something very important: you’ve raised songwriting to be something more important than buying a cup of coffee.
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