Four Important Self-Care Tips for Musicians

We musicians can be our own worst enemy. Our passion causes us to care too much, our perfectionism causes us to avoid practicing, and our unclear career paths stress us out no end. So in order to make sure we actually succeed in this art that we love, we need to take care of ourselves. Here are four self-care tips for musicians to make the most of their passion. Take purposeful breaks. Procrastinating does not count as a real break. A real break is on purpose, to rest, and fe

How to Handle Fear of Uncertainty

So I realized the other day: I’m an adult. I’m like, old. In a year and half, I’ll be entering the Real World finally, and I’ll need a for-real source of income, not just my campus job. This was an uncomfortable realization, to say the least. Most musicians’ careers aren’t likely to fit the “traditional” trajectory that people imagine. That uncertainty is nerve-wracking. Here’s how we can all handle it! Take up a side-hustle. Something that helps me keep my anxiety under cont

How to Have a Bad Day

So. In the past two hours I have: Forgotten my lunch Gotten so lost that I ended up 45 minutes late for work Destroyed my phone screen, which is partially why I was in fact 45 minutes late for work Got sent to a 7th floor that doesn’t actually exist, thanks random professor dude It hasn’t been a great day so far. It has, in fact, been bad. Bad days happen to everyone. Literally every single thing that could possibly go wrong seems to go as poorly as possible. By the third or

How to Handle Being Sick During School

If there is one thing I excel at, it’s doing my schoolwork even when I’m sick as a dog. This is because I have the immune system of an infant squirrel, and catch colds like Ash catches Pokemon. I just GOTTA catch’em all. However, after long experience, I can promise you it is possible to keep on top of schoolwork. Yes, even when your head and sinuses are full of cotton wool. Be kind to yourself. Being sick, by definition, means you’re not at full capacity. Trying to be high e

5 Ways to Feel Better in 5 Minutes

I know at least one person who has lost all motivation because summer has begun. There’s something about not being in a regular, structured environment full of like-minded peers that just kinda brings people down, you know? However, you don’t have to succumb to feeling gross now that summer is here. Remember, self-care is important! Here are five tips that can be completed in five minutes and make life feel a little better. Wash your face. It doesn’t have to even be a full wa

Battling Insecurity

The biggest demon of most musicians is a feeling of insecurity. It’s the creeping (or blatant) suspicion that you are literally the worst musician in the world — or at least nowhere near as good as you “should” be. It can also manifest as the idea that you’re going to: get laughed at by your peers, be a complete failure at everything you ever attempt, be revealed as a fraud, find out everyone is just humoring you, find out that your doubters were right, end up completely dest

How to Handle Messing Up

A lot of musicians are perfectionists. Surprise surprise, the kind of person willing to spend four hours practicing a day wants to be perfect! However, in college and in life, there are going to be times that you, for whatever reason, do something just really remarkably poorly. It might be a performance. It might be a project. It might be an assignment you have at work. And eventually, one of these times are going to result in negative consequences. It’s the way life works. I

The Importance of the Brain Vacation

So yesterday, I bought a fish tank. I probably should not have, because it ate up all my free time yesterday, and it was expensive, and it’s going to take regular maintenance until I decide I no longer want fish. It was silly, and unnecessary, and maybe a little weird, and it doesn’t even have fish in it yet, but I love it. My fish tank is a good example of what I like to call a brain vacation. As a musician, my life revolves about 98%  of the time around music. For the most

Four Healthy Meals from the Cafeteria

It’s like a fact of life that no matter how good your school’s dining halls are, you will hate them by the second month of your freshman year. However, that doesn’t mean switching to a take-out and vending machine diet is a good idea. That is how you get scurvy, folks. No, you should probably stick with your cafeteria as much as possible, especially if you have a meal plan. After all, that means it’s already paid for! With that in mind, here are four healthy meals I’ve put to

Self-Care for Musicians

DID YOU KNOW: Being a music major is widely considered highly stressful. A friend of mine made a joke the other day about how she is always on the verge of tears, she is so stressed as a musician. Then she saw a squirrel and started crying because it had an acorn. Keep in mind, my school has been in session three days. And while that might be a bit extreme, that constant sense of stress is something a lot of musicians are familiar with. However, just because being stressed is

Seven Study Moods to Start School Strong!

Semester begins, for me at least, in about two weeks. Academic stuff is already beginning to fill my plate, with graduate school applications starting to be due in MID OCTOBER, jeegus. This means that it’s time for my first STUDY MOOD post of the new school year! These are all ways I like to study – they keep me focused and grounded in what I’m trying to do. Pick your favorite, or try one a day all week! The Gardener: Drinking mint tea, drawing mind maps in a nature-filled sp

4 Reasons to Stick with Music

I will be completely honest here: one of the strangest but most predictable events of my musical school year is the annual Fleeing of the Freshmen. This event, as regular as the tides and sad like lemmings, occurs around the end of first semester. Freshman who were only three months ago bright-eyed and bushy-tailed head to their advisers’ offices, and for a million reasons drop their music majors and switch to something else. It might be class loads that they don’t like – “Ho

How to Handle Failing an Audition

If you are, were, are going to be, or even considered being a music major in college, then you know the fear of Not Getting In. (Heck, in broader terms this applies to college in general, too.) It’s the fear of finishing the application, of doing the audition,  of getting through everything, and then being told, “I’m sorry, but we had many wonderful applicants this year and you were unfortunately not chosen.” Or even worse, just getting a form letter. Or worst of ALL, just ne

How to Use Your Summer

Hey! Are you like me? Do you ALSO have huge plans for stuff you are going to accomplish over the summer? And yet, do you wake up in September to find you didn’t do, like, anything? Awesome! And by awesome, I mean the opposite of that. We have a problem, you and I. We suffer from Summer Procrastination-itis. Summer Procrastination-itis can be rough. It stems from having too much free time – this is one of those “too much of a good thing” scenarios that sitcom mothers warn peop

How to Handle Self-Doubt

If there is ONE problem out there that every musician suffers from, regardless of age, skill level, profession, or whatever, it’s self-doubt. Self-doubt, I swear, kills more careers and opportunities and dreams than anything else out there. At least a third of the messages I get on my social media are about how to improve confidence, how to stop doubting the sender’s abilities, how to believe in themselves, how to stop beating themselves up about stuff. ALL of these things ar

Self Care Musts for Musicians

It’s getting to be recital season, jury season, finals season. It’s getting to be near the end of the semester, when all those things that seemed SO far AWAY and unlikely to ever actually happen are suddenly less than a month away. That is TERRIFYING for a lot of people, I know. For musicians it can mean (combined with that musician-y trait of perfectionism) spending too much time practicing, too much time panicking, and not enough time doing basically anything else. Self car