‘In a day and age where there are many moving parts to one’s career; the importance of having a checklist, is so you don’t miss any important step during the process’

Introduction

When I think of all the tasks I have to do as a modern day musician, I’m shocked at the amount of work I actually have to do! Not the work itself, but all the small and fine details that come along with it. I mean, let’s take posting a Youtube video for example; the number of things you have to keep in mind for a successful upload is a lot, and missing one key task can ruin the end goal if we are not careful. That is where checklists comes in; it gives you a step-by-step program to guide you in making sure you don’t rule or miss out on any important step during the process. An example of how my Youtube upload checklist is:

  1. Make sure lighting in the room is good
  2. Make sure you speak loud and clear during the video and stay on topic
  3. Make sure you have enough battery and memory for the video
  4. Transfer video to PC
  5. Transfer video to video editing software
  6. Edit video
  7. Add brand logo intro

And so on…

If you come to think of it, once step that I forget, basically ruins the whole process AKA failure. And that’s what we’re trying to avoid.

Start with the end in mind

So how do you create a checklist, and for which tasks do you need them for? Well, all of them; from songwriting, production, promotion and everything else in between. The first step is to clarify your goal, let’s say to practice your instrument/vocals. The obvious step to do is to get a pen and paper and start writing all the individual tasks that come along with practicing and then start to order them in a step-by-step way. For the sake of having an example, mine looks like this:

  1. Have a pen and paper
  2. Block out 1 hour for practicing, no distractions
  3. Make a cup of coffee/tea
  4. Place my instrument next to me
  5. Brainstorm lyric ideas or titles
  6. Choose a key signature

And away we go!

It’s just like a muscle

You’re probably wondering, ‘do I really have to do this’? The simple answer is no, not really, but if you want to give yourself a higher chance in creating better results, you’ve got to have better processes. And checklists add clarity to the process, by giving you a more focused action plan for any task. It’s like having a friend to guide you along the way! If you imagine top athletes, they don’t just go out and ‘exercise’, they have a routine and strict process before they go out there. And in some form or another, that is a checklist at the heart of it. And the more you use checklists, the more you’ll understand the power that lies with it. It saves you time from thinking of the next step, it gives you peace of mind to know you won’t make a mistake, and it strengthens your habits and actions. Eventually, all these tasks feel easy and smooth, because you’ve strengthened the muscle for taking on that particular task!

Conclusion

I personally wouldn’t be as productive and successful with my endeavors if I didn’t use checklists; and to be honest, I wish I knew about them sooner! I hope that you take this information and use it to start strategizing how to apply checklists in your own career. You’re giving yourself a higher chance to have better results, and every little aspect you add to your arsenal, solidifies your foundation, so when the storm hits, you stay strong! Here are other benefits of using a checklist if I still haven’t sold you on it:

  • Motivation – ever tried to do something and didn’t know where to start? or you we’re unmotivated? Checklists motivates you by guiding you along the process!
  • Creativity – feel overwhelmed with all the parts to making a song? Checklists help you identify what’s wrong or missing!
  • Organization – do you keep making the same mistakes and missing vital tasks that you overlook? Checklists are there to remind you of those steps!

Thank you for reading the blog, let me know what you thought of it and if you have any feedback or comment 🙂 Here’s to more music and success!

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