- a favorable juncture of circumstances
- a good chance for advancement or progress
Learning to recognize a real opportunity is an important skill to have in your musical career. In our desire to move forward, we can take on projects/performances that can end up being a huge waste of time, energy, and money.
I have heard other musicians say "take every gig and play everything free or not." I don't agree with this statement I am all for diversifying your musical experience. In fact; I encourage it. But, I think accepting every gig/performance that comes your way can actually result in missed opportunities.
“Don't be afraid to give up the good to go for the great."
― John D.
I believe the secret to success is not taking every opportunity that presents itself. Below is some advice to help you figure out if something is an opportunity or not.
What's your end Goal?
You should have a goal. Whether it's playing music for yourself or making it to Carnegie Hall; having an end goal helps you choose opportunities that will be beneficial to you. This doesn't mean you can't have fun and try new things., It means that when it comes to making a decision you have a reference point. Opportunities you accept should align with your end goal.
How will it affect your Well-being?
Your well-being is important, and should be considered when an opportunity presents itself. I don't believe in sacrificing your mental and physical health to further your career. Some blood, sweat, and tears may happen but it shouldn't be a detriment. When an opportunity presents itself you want to do your best. It's difficult to do your best if you're on a path to burnout.
“Turn your obstacles into opportunities and your problems into possibilities.”
― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart
It's all in the Details
My experience has taught me that details are important. If details aren't available It leads to much more time, money and energy than anticipated. Before I know it the direction has changed and I'm out of another opportunity. If the foundation is not yet laid, the opportunity should be well thought out and set up to lead to an even better opportunity.
I have discussed knowing your why in other blog posts. It's important to keep your Why in the forefront of your mind. It keeps you on the path to success, and knowing your why gives you direction when contemplating an opportunity.
Every opportunity will not be perfect, that's ok. But the right opportunities will add value to your musical career. The right opportunity will be an adventure that moves you closer to your end goal.
We all have something to share. I would love to know what opportunities have or haven't benefited you.
Your Happy Musician