Newbies in any career path will always be intimidated by those who are already succeeding (or on their way to success) in their career. Newbies will have a rough start, and they will experience loads of frustrations. Sometimes, it comes to a point in an aspirant’s life that they would want to quit. Some would actually do it, some would live with the frustrations, while some will bear in mind their frustrations but move forward in their career. I’d rather be the last kind of aspirant, but I will tell you this now: it’s hard to do that.
Earlier today, I recorded a cover of Jensen Gomez’s song All I Want from his solo album Umpisa. Okay, I’ve been fangirling over Jensen Gomez and Jensen and the Flips for the past few days. It has even come to the point of me using my dad’s credit card for purchasing Gomez’s Umpisa, Gomez’s song with Reese Lansangan called Maybe, and Jensen and the Flips’ Honeymoon and BTTR.
ANYWAY, so I uploaded my cover on SoundCloud and shared the link on my Facebook and Twitter accounts. I even tagged Jensen Gomez in my tweet. And guess what!!! HE LIKED MY TWEET! He said thanks, and I said thanks too. Hehe, kilig! Anyway, it was not the first time he favorited my tweets, but to get noticed and “recognized” because of a song cover I did was big for me. And that brought a wide smile on my face.
But before Gomez reacted to my tweets, I made this tweet, and I quote, “Wanting a music career with little skills in instruments, little followers, and no connections is beyond frustrating. Am I not good?” Why did I tweet this? Well, because it’s not often that someone checks out my SoundCloud, especially for my original songs. So I felt so bad about it, to the point that a depressive episode started in me. But then there came Jensen Gomez to save the day (thank you so much!). But then this came up:
I felt attacked, to be honest. It hurts so much to be strongly criticized by an anonymous person, especially that I cannot say that I have a music career. For someone who’s not out of tune (and, in fact, can sing well) to be told that their voice is sub par at best is somewhat an insult. I get it, I still have to learn and improve, but to tell me that outright is hurtful. Okay, my skills in playing instruments are not good, and I know that very well. Not much of a problem there. But this got me so bad: “you don’t have followers [because] it is extremely difficult to like you”. Um, I didn’t quite get that, for I did not know in what context that was taken from. But anyway, I was badly hurt.
My eyes were tearing up while there were strangers (visitors) in our living room, which was where I was. It was actually a good thing that I was using my laptop; at least I was able to “hide” my face in it. I immediately sent messages to my friends, containing the screen shot and a short message: self-esteem now at rock bottom.
Some of my friends told me to not mind comments like those, and I told them that I eventually will bear those in mind for my growth. But, I also told them that I should let myself validate the hurting feeling, because no one can simply brush off comments like those, especially if they seldomly get them. I seldomly get harsh criticism, and I’m a very sensitive being. So I got hurt…a lot.
Now that my day is almost over, looking back, I think this is a lesson for me. If I do want to have a music career, I should prepare myself for a lot of harsh criticism from people I don’t know. If I want to be successful in this path, I should expect a lot of “haters”. But despite all of those people who might give me stress, I will most likely have supporters, even if they’re my family and friends only. I guess I’ll just have to cling on to their support whenever I feel down because of those negative comments I receive.
Also, I should learn from those comments. Hey, those comments might spring out growth in my music, my career, my life, and so much more. So yeah, I should keep them in mind, but not in my heart.
That comment discouraged me for a while, but because of my friends’ reassuring words, I feel like I’m back on track. My self-esteem has been boosted a bit, and my faith in myself has been restored. Now, I’m refueled to go ride and drive on this road I chose. I will not stop singing. I will not stop writing. I will not stop learning. Only death can stop me from this ride, and this is one of the few promise I will ever make in my life.
This will all be worth it. It just takes time.