Before we hit 2017, I want to share an extremely personal story with you all that I haven't shared with very many people before.
My hope is that this story will help motivate you (and the rest of the drumming community) to start 2017 off with a little push.
Exactly 2 years ago today, I was named winner of the Tommy Igoe Groove Essentials Contest by Hudson Music (video here). It was such an honor to be recognized by the drumming community and seriously meant the world to me.
What meant more to me was the opportunity to then get to have a lesson with the incredible Tommy Igoe, someone who I look up to both as a musician and an educator.
Little did I know that my lesson with Tommy would end up changing my life.
You see, during our lesson in 2014, we actually barely played any drums at all (Maybe 15 seconds on the hi-hat).
Instead, we spent the entire time talking about life, music, and identifying what my goals/struggles were in both.
I had really needed to hear his advice at that time in my life. While I had both a great drumming gig and a solid corporate music job, I'd been feeling super stuck in my life for quite some time.
Deep down, I knew that I was continuing to play it safe, yet at the same time was too afraid to actually do anything about it.
Can anyone else relate?
In the lesson, Tommy told me something that I'll never forget:
"Steve... NOBODY lays on their death bed and says: ' You know what?... I sure wish that I had NEVER had taken a shot on that thing."
These words hit me like a brick wall! (If you missed it, re-read it again, placing yourself in that situation)
The lesson I learned is that our existence on this planet is seriously a blip on the radar (when you really think about the grand scheme of the universe). This isn't meant as a negative or as something dramatic, it's meant as a literal reality-check.
Inevitably, you and I will also be on our deathbeds too someday, reflecting on how our 20's, 30's, 40's, 60's, 80's, etc. went.
Once you become comfortable with this reality, why WOULDN'T you just go for it in life??? It would seem silly not to!
Tommy motivated me to start taking more chances in life and to STOP playing it safe. He pushed me to put myself out into the world fully, not just as a drummer (I've since been playing drums for the show Rock Of Ages), but also with my various online projects (Rules For Drummers, Ask The Drummer Podcast, 24 Days Of Vinnie, etc.) to help inspire the drumming community.
It's all been SO rewarding and I can honestly say that today, I feel so much closer to living my life's true purpose than I was in 2014. I have Tommy to thank for this!
The point of sharing this story with you all is this:
If you are even remotely THINKING about doing/creating/taking action on something in your life, JUST DO IT!
Thinking doesn't give you any results. Action does.
Don't be afraid to take action on the things you really want in life! You will lay on your deathbed feeling happy that you took that shot, not the other way around.
Thanks for reading and I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday and totally crushes it in the new year... GO FOR IT!