They say, “find a job or career that you want, and you’ll find yourself not working a day in your life.” It sounds wise, but there are real-life implications that this adage does not address properly. Your music is your passion, and it is your life. But it can be more than demanding, and it can make you feel exhausted. And when you do, you need to take a break.
Taking a break may seem a bad option for overly passionate individuals. “Why would I take a break from doing what I love?” — that’s a question some people ask. But you need to, especially if your body’s telling you so, and your inspiration is running dry. You may feel guilty that you’re doing it, but it’s necessary. However, remember that even virtuoso musicians take a break from their piano lessons, and artists go on hiatus.
In case you have thought things through, here’s what you need to do next:
Just let it flow
When you take a break from music, your first few days off may feel odd. You may not have something to do, and eventually, you may feel bored. However, remember that you do not need to force yourself to do something. Just take things easy, and let them flow. Take time to pamper yourself, decompress, and de-stress. Your mind will eventually tell when you should start doing things again.
Pursue non-music things
You may be thinking of going to your nine-to-five job or pursuing a small business — no problem! Go to the gym or go backpacking in Asia. When you do non-music things, you may discover other strengths of yours you did not know existed. And it is also one way of expanding your social circle, as you get to meet people that are outside of your industry.
Or pursue tiny music-related projects
Sometimes, you do not need to take an absolute break from music. You may take a break from just a specific section or niche of the industry. For instance, if you’re a songwriter, you may leave it for a while to explore other musical disciplines. You may do music production. You may choose to learn a new instrument. You may go out and scout for talents. You may even attend seminars and gatherings where you can expand your network. You do you!
Know when you’ll be back
Unless you have decided to absolutely leave everything behind, you should still know when you will be coming back. You might have unfinished projects, or some people are waiting to collaborate with you. You may set a date depending on your current engagements. However, do not forget to notify others about your return.
Don’t rush things
If you don’t feel like coming back yet, do not feel guilty. You are not supposed to beat yourself up. Take your time and understand that you’re doing it for yourself. At this point, you need to come up with back-up plans in case you have decided to leave the industry indefinitely.