By Justin Gray (Songwriter/Producer/Founder of www.mdiio.com)
I always loved this way of talking about the most optimistic version of yourself. The concept is so gigantic and beautiful and invites you to dream big and aspire to something truly incredible.
Every songwriter has a blue sky. What’s yours?
The funny thing about the concept of “blue sky,“ is that the more you think about it, the bigger it gets.
When I first started writing songs my “blue sky” was just having another artist sing a song of mine. Well once that happened, my “blue sky” quickly became small, so I had to expand it. ASAP! Then it became “I want a gold record,” then platinum, and then I wanted to hear my song on the radio, and then I wanted to start getting acknowledgment for my ability, and win awards. 25 years later, my “blue sky” continues to expand. My internal motto is..."I am twice as far as I thought I'd be, but only half as far as I want to be."
Dreams are funny. Once you realize your dreams, you just want to dream more, bigger, wilder!
It’s OK if your “blue sky” is small for now. Hit those targets, achieve those goals, and just dream up a bigger sky.
Here are five must-do’s for the dreamers, aims for the ambitious, faith for the fearless to help you navigate your very own big blue sky!
Be a Dreamer - Nothing amazing happens without a dream first. Even if you don’t think that you can do something, believe that you can. Self-belief will empower you beyond everything. Self-belief will force you to make decisions to support your dreams. At some point, two brothers in Ohio dreamed that they could fly like a bird. So they did everything they could in their power to manifest that dream. Dream big, dream often!
Be Unrealistic - Everybody that does amazing things, has set unrealistic goals for themselves from the onset. Don’t just think outside the box, think outside of everything. What is the most unrealistically huge vision you have for yourself? The best part about being unrealistic, is the fun you have chasing those goals. What’s that saying? Shoot for the moon, and if you miss at least you’ll be among the stars.
Be Bold - I was debating calling this one “be outrageous!“ Make big decisions, and commit to big ideas. Too many people I know have their ambitions held back by crippling self-doubt. If you want to be a potato farmer, move to Idaho! If you want to be a songwriter, get your butt to Nashville, or LA, or any other place where songwriting is happening frequently. Spend some time there, ingratiate yourself to the community, and become a collaborative member. Do something crazy! Fortune favors the bold.
Be Relentless - Find the crack in the door, and kick it open. And when that door closes, find a window. And if that window closes, find another house. There’s always an opportunity for you out there. Using your personal situation as an excuse to hold you back from what you know you need to do, is BS! I hate hearing people use excuses to justify the lack of motivation or success. If you never quit, you’ve never failed. And if you never “go for it” you WILL NEVER SUCCEED.
Be Amazing - Be as amazing as you can be! When you evaluate the last 12 months, are you writing better songs? Are you more committed to your goals than ever? Are you willing to do whatever it takes in order to succeed? I recently had a conversation with a MDIIO member (who may be reading this blog)… They told me that they complete about 12 songs a year. Hate to burst your bubble, but if you are a Songwriter, especially a top liner, that number should be 7 to 10 times that amount. You should be writing consistently between 70 - 120 songs a year. Every song you write is like taking a trip to the creative gym. Each song is a workout, and each workout makes you better and stronger as a songwriter.
The Coda: I think we can all agree that you cannot expect a maximal return from a minimal investment. And that investment is not only financial. It’s time, energy, and emotion. If you want to gas up your jet, take off, and write your name across your own big blue sky, first you have to get your pilots license, or at least write a song that buys you the plane. Then you can hire the captain.
See you next week, and keep writing them hits!