I have been able to dabble in my life long dream of A&R/artist development as of late and it's been really fulfilling. That has always been the area of the music industry that I know I am best suited. One day I was in the studio going over music for a project and the artist I was working with started to share some personal things with me. She is an upcoming artist who I think is incredibly smart, talented and has a lot going for her at the moment. Candidly she shared with me that there is a guy that had broken her heart not too long ago who has started flooding her with phone calls and messages. "You have so much going for you right now" I told her."You are building a great momentum and people are really starting to see what it is that you can do. You need to guard your Achilles heel". The Achilles heel reference was in regard to the fact that I know a little bit about her history. I know that there have been some men to trip her up in the past. These situations have hurt her confidence and in turn have kept her from really coming into her own.
This conversation has made me think about my own life history and the things that get me off course. According to Wikipedia, an Achilles heel is "a deadly weakness in spite of overall strength, that can actually or potentially lead to downfall." Everyone has an Achilles heel that needs to be guarded. It's an area that if not protected from attack can cause you to get swept off your feet and on your butt quicker than Daniel getting his leg swept by Johnny in The Karate Kid. For me they can be a number of things but the older I get the easier they are to spot. These are all things that attack my self esteem and they come around like clockwork. The bible says that there is nothing new under the sun and that is so true. These distractions may have come with slightly different faces and slightly different circumstances but they are all very similar. Now that I am old enough to see the pattern, I can now say that I have let myself get bamboozled a number of times. My dad calls it "falling for the okey doke". Yeah I can't count how many times I have had my leg swept by the okey doke.
I have learned recently that the more you focus on what you don't want to happen, the quicker it may happen. Here is some advice: focus on what you want to happen, not on what you don't want to happen. I recently heard this illustration: Race car drivers are trained to focus on one thing when they are driving at incredibly high speeds. They are never, ever trained to avoid the wall. You try to avoid the wall, you are hitting that wall. My focus has been way off. Yes we are to guard our hearts but we can't live our lives standing in front of it like a defense tackle in football. Life is about making touchdowns. Anything else causes anxiety because you are trying to guard yourself against something not happening. We wind up like Job when we do this who after he lost everything said "What I feared has come upon me." My goal in life regarding relationships isn't to not get my heartbroken. My goal is to engage in healthy relationships that are good for me. Anything that doesn't look like that has got to go. Standing guard is not the best position. You have to live life on the offensive not the defensive, moving while bobbing, weaving and dropping fools if need be while going towards your goal. Can you tell I have been watching a lot of football this year?
Now that I have learned this, I talk about what I do want and what I am going towards more. I also think about it more because if you can change your thoughts you can change your behavior. The bad thing about losing focus is that if you stay off course long enough, good things can be happening all around you and you won't notice them. For instance, my pastor as well as other ministers I have heard at the beginning of this year said that this is the year that God is going to resurrect some dreams that people have either laid aside or thought were dead. As I mentioned before I have always wanted to be in A&R/artist development. This has been a dream since grade school that I gave up on. Last night I got an email from another artist I have been helping of a possible CD cover for her upcoming release. In the credits at the very bottom next to A&R it had my name. My first album credit! I couldn't believe it. I hadn't asked for it and I wasn't working towards it. She and her management acknowledged the work I have been doing and gave me the credit. I was just doing what I love to do and helping where I can. Prayers that I prayed long ago are being answered and I have been so distracted by things that don't really matter that I haven't been able to thank God for them and enjoy them while they are happening. Why? Because I have been on the ground holding a sore leg swept after being hit in my own Achilles heel.
Whatever you are pursuing whether it's a career, weight loss, or even peace, do it on the offensive. Go towards it versus looking around in fear of who or what can rob you of it. Keep it in the forefront of your mind so when anything comes around that does not line up with your goal, you won't waste time on distractions. Keep on moving ladies.