I received a really nice email from one of my followers the other day. She was fairly new to joining my music community and replied to an email I had recently sent her. Most of you know that when you join my community, I send you 3 songs to download and enjoy. She responded:
“I enjoyed the three songs very much. You definitely have talent and I hope it gets recognized.”
That got me thinking, which could be dangerous! 😃
It got me thinking about success. What is success? How do you measure it? What do you measure to decide if you’re successful in any of your endeavors? This can be very subjective and can depend on many things. For musicians, success used to mean “getting signed” with a record label, touring the world and selling millions of albums/CDs. If you didn’t achieve that, you weren’t a “success”.
But then, the internet happened. The record companies were no longer the “gatekeepers” deciding who’s music was released and shared with the world. Now, the musician decides. We have all the power that used to belong to a very small, exclusive club.
So, what does that mean to someone like me? Well, it means I get to decide what songs I write and record and release to the public. I get the privilege of creating my own community, filled with folks like you who enjoy my music, buy my amazingly cool “merch” :-) and support me in all my efforts. I get to interact with you one on one, whenever we want, without getting permission from anyone else.
Also, we both get to decide what is important in our world. One of the goals that I set out to achieve in my life is to be an example for anyone who has struggled with mental health. I want to share what I did to overcome my own struggles, hoping that it helps you in some way by lifting your spirits and improving the quality of your life. I often share the tools that I use to improve my mental health, hoping it helps you. For me, it’s not just about the music. It’s about you and what I can do for you. That does mean wanting you to enjoy my songs but it also can be so much more.
So, back to success. After reading that email, I replied to her with this:
“Thanks so much, xxxxxxx!! I appreciate you letting me know that you enjoyed my music. Your hope that my talents get recognized has already happened. You recognized them and that means the world to me!! You're more important to me than any record executive or music critic. I don't need them but I do need you and people like you to recognize my talent. I sincerely thank you for already making me successful!!”
Just like her, you make me successful. Your support and the support of thousands of others like you means the world to me. We get to decide success on our own terms. I get to build and nurture my community and I hope you thrive by being a member. My gratitude for you knows no bounds! I am a huge success! You gave me that!! And I am forever grateful!!!