This thought brought to you by nearly 12 years of hardship, trials and tribulations and a ton of goofing up along the way and figuring shit out the hard way. Think about this one for a hot minute. Our social support system is critical to determining whether or not we keep on pushing through with goals and aspirations or if we give up. Do you really want it? Do you like the idea of wanting it? I’ll use my experience as an example, please let me know if you can relate…

I have spent so much time in my own space, developing my craft, fighting to be heard, struggling – really struggling. Some people, often closest to me have told me to give up. Others call me stubborn, or even just plain stupid. It’s not like that to me. It’s not a choice. I would rather wonder where my paycheque was and continue to make positive impact in the lives of others than go work for some company and build their dream. I truly don’t know what I’d be doing if I was not a catalyst for lifestyle change in others’ lives.

I’ve had a lot of time to think about the next thing, the next way to inspire to the masses, another promotional strategy to communicate my message …the list goes on and on… it’s really quite a thing for me. My overactive mind still sometimes gets the best of me and I find myself reeling these extravagant thoughts and dreams of creativity and purpose in so that it’s fuel to the fire. But at times, it goes unnoticed. Actually, I feel like most often it goes unnoticed. That’s okay though, except for when it crosses a certain line. I am human and emotions do play a role.

More often than not, I’m the butt of most insensitive jokes. What’s batshit crazy about that, is that the jokes come from people you wouldn’t expect. Just little shots from those on the sidelines, not really sure what I’m doing behind the scenes and clearly not in tune with how the words they speak may affect others around them.

“Will you pay me in exposure.”

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This is a real example from a real person in my life. A person I would have in the past called a friend. Harmless or not, the demeaning nature of this comment temporarily derailed my train from the tracks of my greater purpose. It was like a callous shot in the arm. A sting from a wasp. Albeit temporary, I’m not going to die (thank the heavens I learned this past summer that I’m not allergic to stings!) it still hurts like hell.

Why?

Because it’s from the perspective of an individual closer to me (although now that could be argued) than a random person. A person that knows (some of) my story and has seen my growth, seen my shortcomings and been there on the path for some of it. They were not alongside me shoulder to shoulder, but ironically enough I met this person and had a positive impact on their lifestyle. Typical me, years ago we met and  I provided my professional services to incorporate wellness into a lifestyle darkened by poor nutrition, alcoholism and inactivity, stress and so on and so forth…. So the comment itself bamboozles me. And feel free to use that word when given the opportunity this week. It’s under-utilized. Anyway, I know my value and was miffed by the lack of discretion. I felt like calling them out with something like:

“Hello, we got on so well because we learned from each other in times of critical need. Now you want to dismiss the work that I do because of whatever insecurities or predisposed commentary you have about my business practices…”

I did throw fire back, unapologetically – as this wasn’t the first time this individual made the exact same discerning comment. I laughed it off the first time, something like 6 months ago… but once the knife is in and turned a couple times around it’s hard to not take things personally… you know?

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However, today as I look back on it, I have let that shit go. It was not a personal attack against me. Who knows what the people around us are going through. They could be just reacting and projecting a story they have in their head about you. And that brings me finally, to my main point. Ta da! See? Full circle…

The people we hold closest to us in our personal lives have a story they’ve built up about us. So no matter what you accomplish professionally, no matter how much experience you gain in your field, you’ll always be “sonny”, “baby brother” or “one of the boys”, “daddy’s girl” the “party girl” or “wild child” or whoever you were to them when they met you.

You’ll only become a prophet once you leave your hometown.

 


 

Now, for those of you wondering what the heck I was getting flack on Facebook about anyway, I actually made a calling for an IT/Web design tech savvy person to bounce some ideas and see what they would recommend for a project I’ve been working at for a while; my new online store. I am prepared to hire the right person as web design, though I can do it – is not a great use of my time. I’d prefer to have someone much more in love with it and proficient to get it done right and with the same kind of passion as I bring to my clients.

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This is what the comment above was in response to… the backstory is that in our industry trades of services and “promises of fame” often act in lieu of monetary compensation. So I felt that comment delegitimized my credibility and assumes I wouldn’t flat out hire someone to do the job. Not the case at all. Se la vie… 

Turns out for the time being anyway I don’t need to hire anyone on. I was able to figure things out and get the coding done DIY style so now all of you can check out the products and services I offer to musicians, via remote coaching, webinars and soon to be released, E-Programs.

That’s right, I’ve got a few introductory exercise workout programs and stretch techniques that I’ve built and can’t wait to release to help people conveniently take care of themselves at home with proper instruction!

For now, online coaching services and free weekly webinars – if you’re interested in checking it out, please head to the MusicFit Collective New Online Store at

—–> musicfit.yondo.com

The first webinar is set to help explain what kind of exercises are best for you in The Musician’s Guide To Working Out and I’d love to see you there.

Until next time,

Namaste sweet!

M

 

Featured image by Joshua Alfaro on Unsplash

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“I dunno.”

The only words to escape my empty mind at the time. Fast forward to a couple nights ago. Similar in approach to a tee.

“I dunno.”

See, human beings are fascinating creatures. Oftentimes we tend to think about all the things at the end of the road. Meanwhile, we have missed the beauty of the turns, the hills and the coastal view all along the way.

It’s right in front of you.

But only when you’re ready will your eyes clear the fog and let you see for yourself.

And that’s okay.

We’ve got all the time in the world. It just likes to chase us.

Thanks for listening, namaste sweet.

Goodnight. 😚

-ms

The minute I quit the snow removal job last week, not officially, but in my head.. was the minute everything came together.

I’ve since gained 3 new clients, secured another 3 month term with Ronald McDonald House and most importantly, felt happy about life.

If you’re thinking, I need a “what if” safety net, you’ve already allowed yourself permission to fail and thus the likelihood of you succeeding is greatly reduced. Instead, I want to challenge you.

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This is a shot of me with my friend, Garth in front of the exact machine he learned how to produce on with his late father, Jack, which is now housed at National Music Centre in my hometown, Calgary Alberta. I spend a lot of time at NMC. Had I not committed to my dream of immersing myself to the music community a few years back, I’d have never met this incredible human. I’m so grateful to call him my friend. He’s changed so many lives and is genuinely one of the most caring humans I’ve ever met.

Dare to dream your wildest dreams. Dare to go above and beyond what others, maybe your closest, nearest and dearest think is absolutely insane. Super high risk. “Not something they’d do”.

Why?

Well, no one was ever inspired by someone that excelled at mediocrity.

Take an effin’ chance and commit to what you love.

Instead of thinking “What’s the worst that could happen, think:

 

“What’s the best that could happen?”

The kids loved this tour, Jason was amazing. Thank you, NMC.

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This is one of the 9 pianos David Foster has donated from his foundation. Look closely, see if you recognize any names. What an inspirational tour – behind the scenes at NMC.

That was my day. Had I tried to stick out the Plan B, earning a steady paycheque, grind out the bullshit hours for “income” I wouldn’t have had the chance to be with my friends and in my lane as a leader and educator in the community that has given me so much in return.

Cut the horse crap. Cut the Plan B. You’ll be successful when you believe you will be successful.

Happy Sunday, thanks for listening.

If you’re feeling inspired to dig in to what you do truly and help express yourself, I’m here. I’ve created an online course to help you get there and learn how to exploit your true weirdness and personality.

Monkey Tree Marketing Social Media Marketing ABCs

 

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If you’d like to learn more about my role in the Canadian Music Industry, I might recommend you check into my first book, “The Musician’s Guide To Surviving The Rock Star Lifestyle”

And for any musicians out there interested in learning more about MusicFit and the services we offer, please head to MusicFit.ca We have a ton of resources and services geared specifically towards musicians. So, let’s chat.

 

 

 

 

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Okay, for real now. Thanks for listening, have a great week.

M

 

I don’t expect anyone to understand.

But support is more than just providing a bailout, or your infinite wisdom and sagely advice… it’s about having the courage to drop your own values and encourage the crazy, even if deep down you might doubt it. Don’t let them hear that doubt… Their crazy is what’s going to change the world. You don’t realize how powerful the removal of all doubt can be in that. So let them know that they have got this. They’re crazy. But you believe in them.

I️ get it now.

I️ actually caught myself, first thing today – “I hate this job.”

Woah. Okay, what?

It’s not the job. Well, kinda. I️ mean, I’m still super grateful for having friends that can help me out in dire times, but the lesson has been learned.

“You’re so much more than a shovel.”

That’s what Steve told me when I reached out for help and support today when I️ was really hurting. There’s been few people in my life over the years that can pick me up with elegance but also get me to respond and make the appropriate change. Thank you, Steve. And everyone else I was in touch with today.

I stopped my job, emailed cardiology; my nurse and counsellor from when I was down after skating had to stop, and realized this time it was all about me.

My body was not going to do it today. Chest tightness, palpitations, you name it. My heart was not happy. Which is super concerning for those that know me. Overall, an uneasy fear described my morning. Like I said, “I hate this job”. Well, my body listened today.

It’s such a battle. Some days are totally fine. I’m 10/10 happy, jumping around being silly, then days like this make me want to quit everything and just lay in my bed.

I had a super haunting nightmare last night. I was back at the old house, Sarah answered the door. I was going back to just apologize, but it was mid day, so I️ don’t know why I thought I would see them all at Tuscany. Anyway, I don’t remember much but sitting around the kitchen table by myself, waiting.

There was an eerie feeling, hence the nightmare. I actually thought he was going to come home to kill me. A lot of people don’t know this, but on one of my first days at World Health Curtis attacked me with a belt, broke skin through my gym shorts across the side of my leg. I still have a scar. It would have been fitting for our first and last engagement to be so violent. Fucking psychopath.

I think the dream set my intent on the day.

I was not going to succumb to imminent death. I was glad to have woken up. So glad.

And from the nightmare of lack of control today and doing things that rob me of my soul, take my power and I’m committed to no longer allow for that.

Thank you Flo. As always, thanks for listening.

Reach out if you’re feeling like you’re in a dark place. There’s a ton of support and free counsel. Call health link, 811 for more info or just talk to your doctor. I gotta run to my appointment right now, so PEACE!M

On Stillness:

Do you ever just sit down and tune out?

This has been fairly effective way for me to prioritize my thoughts and I had an awesome experience last night as I was packing things up from my parents farm out just east of the city.

The cold air made for a deafening silence and I only really heard the crunching under my feet. I was filled with love from having just played with my niece and nephew for three hours, totally surprise style visit as my ma and pa didn’t tell me Sean and the fam would be there… intentionally surprising me I’m sure, knowing how rough of a last couple weeks I have had and what seeing the kiddos would do to my heart.

Those two kids just have a way of warming up the room, but it was the reflection piece of that that got me the most this time. Playing with those kids, not being glued to my phone, all the work I could be doing, the news, the Instagram likes and Facebook news – none of that distraction… that was the stillness I needed.

On Productivity:

I’ve been up since 7am working away on a few different projects. Get up, stretch it out, train some clients, eat some food, have some meetings and get back at it. One of these projects I’m particularly proud of is something I had been sitting on since the fall, before MusicFit. Of course, another entrepreneurial expansion of my trades, Monkey Tree Marketing. It’s my Personality Marketing venture – Head here to find out what that’s all about.

And check out this video below to get an understanding of how I came up with the name, the brand and my experience from the ashes of some of the worst depression I have had since 2013. Enjoy. These guys are pivotal in my life, both musically but more importantly on a social construct kinda way…

Hug those you love, do good and be well.

Thanks for listening,

For some reason Florence + The Machine’s “Shake It Out” popped into my head and I was carefully cycling home tonight from work. I mean, yeah – I’m a little crazy for biking in -20. But today it’s out of necessity. And cycling is fucking therapeutic. Movement and motion is fucking therapy. I mean, I would have done it anyway if I did have gas in the Tiguan, but today wasn’t by choice because it was a nice day for a ride.

The line “It’s always darkest before the dawn” really echoes with me today.

I had $3 in change to pay for groceries today, thankfully I had $20 to redeem but I had to get crafty to hit just over $20 to be able to use that reward. $23.74. Thank God.

That’s how close to poverty I am right now. I just spent the weekend riddled with another bought of depression, triggered by memories of certain places within Calgary I hadn’t been to since my time with my now ex-wife, and former friends and family of mine. It was very abrupt. It was very cruel. And depression doesn’t give two shits if you’re ready to deal with it or not, it comes in waves. I truly felt like I was drowning.

However, the bike ride taught me a few things.

No matter how slow the go is, you just focus on one pedal stroke at a time and you’ll get there. Don’t focus on the result, focus on the process.

Being physically fit to ride across the city at any given time in any given season is fucking rad. I’m grateful for my physical ability and health.

Also, much like overcoming the darkness of mental health, even the most seemingly insignificant victories go a long, long way to the betterment of ones psyche. And you need to close down those past traumas and reinvent yourself.

So while to some the thought of biking home in the cold, dark winter of Calgary in November is just silly… to me it means a lot more.

It’s always darkest before the dawn.

Thanks for listening. If you feel compelled, please consider helping to bring awareness to mens mental health issues in the music industry. I’m very proud to be a part of Mo Music. I’m fundraising for Movember and representing the men in the local music industry. Depression is a fickle bitch, anxiety is running rampant and the stats on men committing suicide are ridiculous. Help keep our music industry men healthy and let them get treatment and have the resources to stay away from the darkness.

After my bought last week I remember all too well how cold that darkness is. -20 on a bike in the dark at 9pm in Calgary has nothing on the deep freeze anxiety and depression has put on me. But I am working on that. I want others to know that they’re not alone.

Please support me and my homies of Mo Music here ———> https://mobro.co/coachschwartzy?mc=1

Every single dollar helps.

Thanks for listening,