Berklee Blogs follows Kayleigh Mill, a Music Business major and participant in Berklee’s Summer Internship Program in New York City. Today, Kayleigh tells us how to deal with the inevitable stress that comes with internships and additional responsibility
There’s no way around it – if you want to be in the music industry, you’re going to face a lot of stress. You’ll be challenged, questioned, and criticized, and unlike high school, no one’s going to be there to hold your hand along the way. This is, after all, a business, no matter how passionate we are about the art. No matter how much you think you can handle, it’s best to be prepared with some tools to release or reduce some pressure, because that pressure can and will break you if you aren’t careful.
In recent years, I’ve certainly seen my fair share of breakdowns, and been through a few myself. Sometimes, we just have to remind ourselves of a few things…
Learn When To Say No…and Yes
Sometimes work and commitments just build up, and we’ve been trained from a young age to take advantage of opportunities and do as much as possible ALL THE TIME. Busy means important, busy means dedication. But one person can only take on so much, and you need to learn to distinguish between what will be beneficial to your goals, and what will hold you back and take up time that could be spent more productively. It’s a difficult task, but if you have a clear outline of where you’re going, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to make an informed decision. Anything that isn’t on your path, eradicate from your life as painlessly as possible. Here’s some interesting posts on the subject:
Time Is On Your Side
With the clock always ticking towards deadlines, it’s easy to think that there isn’t enough of it in a day, a month, a year. However, with some good time management, there’s really a lot more of it than we’ve come to believe. How often are you on Facebook? Checking your email? Texting even? Most of these things can wait, and there have been studies that show that checking Facebook even once* can decrease productivity significantly. Get a journal (or use excel) and write down everything you do in a day – it’s amazing how much the little things add up. More helpful posts:
The Mind Is A Muscle
Like a muscle, it needs to take breaks. Constantly flexing your intelligence, concentration, and will power won’t increase their strength, it will deplete it. Of course, it’s imperative that they are used to their full potential, but there should be time every day for a period of rest. Save decisions that require willpower for the decisions that can’t be automatic. Anything that can be automatic – what to eat, when to exercise, any routines – make it that way. Posts:
Keep The Spark Alive
Never forget that you work in an industry of passion. You’re living your dream (hopefully) – not many people are so lucky. It’s an all-consuming industry, sure, but it’s a liberating consumption, one that we choose and embrace whole-heartedly. If ever you feel overwhelmed, pull out the reason you’re here (song, album, band, instrument) and remind yourself how lucky you are.
Be sure to follow Kayleigh via Twitter @musikleighalive
Kayleigh Mill is in New York for the summer with two internships in the music industry. She’s been at Berklee for two years with one to go until she graduates with a Music Business degree, and has embraced the opportunities the college has to offer. While at school, she runs the Berklee Songwriters Club as well as the Ski/Snowboard Club, is on the board of the Berklee Fitness Club, and writes for The Groove.
After graduation, Kayleigh plans to move to New York to pursue her entrepreneurial ambitions, as well as experience as much of the music industry as possible. You can read her full blog at musikleighalive.wordpress.com or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.