Do You Still Make Music?

Do You Still Make Music?

This question came through on WhatsApp yesterday.

I had to laugh.

But I know that we all get a little wrapped up in our own worlds, and don’t necessarily follow or even remember what others are up to. So, I thought I would address this issue head on.

Okay, so What’s the Deal?

The deal is yes, I’m still making music.

I’m not pumping it out like I’m pumping out blog posts right now (daily) and I’ll probably talk more about that tomorrow.

Either way, I continue to play quite a bit of guitar, and since moving to Abbotsford, I’ve been writing and preparing quite a bit of material.

New song

A little something I was working on earlier this year.

And since June I’ve been working on a separate project (full album’s worth of material), some of which will see the light of day soon. Getting this project done is priority right now.

But All You Ever Talk About is Your Books

First and foremost, I’m quite proud of my books. And based on all the great feedback I’ve gotten I know they can make a big difference for music makers out there.

I’m not going to shut up about my books, and it’s not really a thing of how many sales I can get. It’s about how much of a dent in the universe I can make. It’s about how much of an impact I can make.

Maybe this wasn’t totally obvious either, so let me put it as clearly as I can: I’m also a musician coach, and have been for many, many years now! That’s why I created Music Entrepreneur HQ and all associated products. Not so that I could self-promote better, strange as that may sound.

But the reality is I talk about a lot more than just my books.

I talk about my courses.

I share about spirituality.

I answer questions.

And on my podcast, I’ve repeatedly shared about my comedic tribute to the 80s project. I even played guitar on the latest episode of the show.

I realize I haven’t released anything since Spirit Searcher, Vol. 1. But I’m creating the possibility that 2021 will be a better year.

I could release a few remastered tracks, but I just haven’t gotten around to it yet.

To top it all off, I’ve also got a substantial backlog of live performance videos to share. I haven’t nailed down a release schedule yet, but I thought you might like to know.

Final Thoughts

In closing, thank you for asking. No, I haven’t given up on music. Yes, I’m still working on quite a few things. And I look forward to sharing them with you.

I’m more heavily invested in doing things I love and enjoy versus trying to find commercial success. So, I might be a little all over the map in what I create (just as I have always been). But I’m having fun. And that counts for more than making huge sums of money.

I’m looking forward to sharing more with you.

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How Dare You Call Me “Unlimited”

How Dare You Call Me “Unlimited”

As is the wont of social media hounds, I received a non-sequitur, context-free message on Instagram today.

I don’t understand exactly what the question or situation was. But if I were to recreate it, the essence of it was this:

How dare you call me unlimited when even my government prevents me from feeding my family?

Here is what I can share:

Limitlessness is Not About Your Circumstances

These are complicated times. And in complicated times, we are typically more exacerbated than in easier, more free-flowing times.

Limitations. Restrictions. We see them everywhere right now. And everyone has been impacted.

No, none of us have been impacted equally. Some are making a little less money. Others have lost their job or home. And there are those whose health has been severely impacted.

So, given the circumstances, we begin to question our limitlessness.

What’s a little goofy about this is that there were limitations and restrictions before, even if they weren’t as severe. And we did not question our limitlessness then.

Your circumstances have nothing to do with your limitlessness. Here’s why:

Understanding Your Unlimited Nature

First and foremost, your unlimited nature can always be found within you.

If you try to go looking for it outside of yourself, you may not find it. You may be blind to it. But what you must remember is that you are the very image of god.

If you are the image of god, who is unlimited, then that limitlessness is surely inside you also.

We often try to look outside to prove to ourselves how unlimited we are. But this doesn’t work. Because it’s seeking permission for something you already are.

If you asked your parent, “may I have a cookie?” when you already have a cookie in your hand, your parent would look back at you puzzled.

We may feel less than limitless at times. But this only serves to remind us of our true nature, which is unlimited. Because we feel the injustice of feeling less than free.

But we can only feel less than free if we give other people, events, and circumstances power they do not have.

We can only feel less than free if we give other people, events, and circumstances power they do not have. Click To Tweet

Your Creativity is Unlimited

If the problem cannot be solved one way, perhaps it can be solved another way.

You were given the unique gift of imagination, which is truly unlimited. You can go anywhere you want in your mind.

People just like you have come up with all kinds of inventions to solve their own problems. And some of those people have gone onto become wealthy beyond measure, because solving one person’s problem often means solving another’s problem too.

Is there a creative solution you have yet to explore? Have you tried thinking outside the box?

Do not get mad and say, “how can you say that in a time like this – I need an answer now!”

Now is the most critical time to begin to explore other ways of accomplishing what you need to accomplish. Because in times of difficulty, the tough begin to innovate.

In times of difficulty, the tough begin to innovate. Click To Tweet

And remember that you cannot come up with unique solutions when you are provoked. You must calm yourself and then look at the situation with a clear head.

Further, difficulty was never a key ingredient in the innovation. But it served as a catalyst for the action. And sometimes we need the catalysts to begin moving in the direction we were already going.

Poking the Lion

Oftentimes, our knee-jerk response to challenges is protest.

But before taking any action, it would be best to evaluate the wisdom behind poking the lion. I will tell you that there is none.

If you improvise a battle with a lion, the lion will surely win, as it’s a born predator. Unless you are a skilled and experienced warrior, surely you will be defeated.

If the fight with the lion is inevitable, then it would be better to strategize before entering the battle. Coming up with a plan. Preparing the personnel and the resources. Practicing execution.

If the fight with the lion is inevitable, then it would be better to strategize before entering the battle. Click To Tweet

And, indeed, if everything progresses as it has been progressing, then a fight with the lion is inevitable.

But you want to be prepared. To be shrewd and wise. To be calculated in how you fight.

Much the same way questions and answers are on two separate wavelengths, so are resistance and solutions. What you want to do is align yourself with the wavelength of the solution rather than the resistance. If you align yourself with resistance, no solution will be available.

What you want to do is align yourself with the wavelength of the solution rather than the resistance. If you align yourself with resistance, no solution will be available. Click To Tweet

Final Thoughts

People, events, and circumstances can leave us feeling discouraged and less-than. It happens to each of us in this experience. Charmed lives do not exist. No one is exempt from people, events, and circumstances.

But we have a choice. The choice is in the meaning we create around the people, events, and circumstances. Amazingly, we can change the meaning we attach to anything, long after any of it has manifested.

Just because you say you are no longer unlimited because something happened to you does not make it any less true. Whatever happened left you less than powerful, but that’s because of how you interpreted the situation.

Interpretation can happen rapidly and subconsciously. But as I said, you can choose your interpretation after the fact.

You do not need to know that you are limitless. Because you already are. The question is, will you let people, events, and circumstances make you feel limited?

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What’s the Best Funnel Builder?

What’s the Best Funnel Builder?

This question recently came through on Instagram:

Funnel question

It’s a great question. And if one person has it, there are bound to be others who are wondering.

Here’s what I see as being the best funnel builder.

Note: This post contains affiliate links.

My Favorite Funnel Builder is 10XPro

You may not have heard of it. But my favorite funnel builder is 10XPro. And throughout this review, I will cover why that is.

10XPro

10XPro is somewhat of a newcomer to the space. But it’s clearly been developed by people who understand the needs of authors, course creators, membership site builders, and anyone who wants to set up funnels, webinars, launches, or otherwise.

If you’ve used other funnel builders (like ClickFunnels), then you understand their strengths and weaknesses well. I have experience with Builderall, Leadpages, ClickFunnels, and CartFlows (I compared some of these in an earlier post). I’ve even built funnels with a hodgepodge of tools (generally not recommended).

If you jumped right into using 10XPro, you would probably take some of the functionality for granted. But if you were to compare it against what else is out there, you would notice some clear differences.

Basically, what I’m saying is that it’s hard to appreciate what’s amazing about 10XPro without knowing some of the stumbling blocks inherent within other platforms.

Still, I will share what I like most about 10XPro. Let’s get into it.

What I Like Most About 10XPro

If I were to talk about everything you get with 10XPro, we’d be here all day. So, in this section, I’m just going to highlight what I like most about 10XPro and how it’s different from other funnel builders.

It’s Well-Documented

Going back many years, I used both Movable Type and WordPress for blogging.

One of the main differences between the two platforms was that WordPress had far more documentation available. Meaning if you ran into any issues with the platform, it was easier to find help with WordPress compared to Movable Type.

10XPro may be relatively new, but they’ve clearly thought this through. The platform is well-documented. They also offer great support.

10XPro documentation

Some of the terminology may take some time to get acquainted with. But that’s par for the course with any funnel builder.

It’s Easy to Use

Deploying a funnel (or campaign) within 10XPro is basically three clicks away from anywhere on the dashboard.

10XPro campaign

And they’ve got all the common funnel types covered – List Builder, Live Launch, Live Webinar, Book Funnel (one of my favorites), Evergreen Webinar, or otherwise.

Designing pages works much the same way it does with Elegant Theme’s Divi Theme (which is one of my favorites for WordPress). So does ClickFunnels, but it just doesn’t work as well. You’ll struggle far less with 10XPro, and you won’t even have to fuss over some of the technical details that get people tripped up in ClickFunnels.

It’s Simple, Minimal & Beautiful

Although I’m being blunt, this is the best way I can put it:

ClickFunnels is great for the user – not so great for the customer. The customer experience leaves something to be desired, mainly in product delivery. I’m not saying ClickFunnels doesn’t do this. I’m just saying it doesn’t do member’s areas all that well.

10XPro is great for the user and the customer. The default templates and designs are highly usable, and easily customizable. You can get everything on your site up and running without endlessly mucking about with templates.

Here’s what one of my courses looks like (minimal customization involved):

10XPro course

It’s Versatile

ClickFunnels is designed to help you build your funnels. And there’s no denying it does that one thing incredibly well! That’s why you won’t outright hear me saying it’s no good.

But it leaves something to be desired in terms of setting up a membership site or even a course platform.

You can do just about anything you want with 10XPro. You can:

  • Build a website with a blog
  • Create funnels (campaigns) with just a few clicks
  • Load up all your courses or member’s content with a killer member’s area
  • Create a fan club or membership site
  • Build a community forum
  • And a great deal more

With 10XPro, everything is built into one, simple, elegant solution. So, if at any point you’re looking to expand, or you want to build out your business, you’ll be grateful you went with 10XPro.

Downsides to 10XPro?

The only downside I can see is that some are going to consider its cost exorbitant.

10XPro price

I get it. There certainly are more affordable options out there. The question is – do you want to buy a Ferrari and have everything you need in one place, ready to go, or do you want to buy a Toyota, realize it doesn’t have everything you need, and get frustrated with all the workarounds you’ll be forced to employ?

Because that analogy seems to apply in full effect here.

Not to get too philosophical, but if we were to focus on the solution (what we want) rather than the problem (what we don’t want), then covering the cost of the software is simply a matter of getting to breakeven as soon as possible.

And you aren’t going to need many customers to get to breakeven every month. Depending on the product, you would only need one monthly customer (e.g. courses that cost $197 are relatively commonplace).

I know that it takes time to build traffic to anything. Trust me. My journey to 800 visits per month on Music Entrepreneur HQ was a struggle, and it’s well-documented besides.

But you’ve got people like me willing to answer all your questions. Which means, let’s face it, the deck is stacked in your favor.

Can I Use Another Funnel Builder?

Yes. Everything shared here is just one man’s opinion. You don’t need to listen to me.

For me, an elegant solution isn’t just one that’s powerful. It’s also one that’s easy to use. That’s why I like 10XPro.

If you’re happy with your funnel builder, there’s no need to switch.

If you want to explore other alternatives, you’re more than welcome to.

You can build effective funnels without using the same funnel builder I use. Different strokes for different folks.

Funnel Builder, Final Thoughts

When it comes to building funnels, the software you use will make a difference.

Some builders are harder to use than others. That makes delays inevitable, and frustrations a strong possibility.

Some builders aren’t overly customizable. Which can leave you feeling uncertain about your message and whether it will come across.

Some builders are missing functionality. And that can slow down your business’ growth and can even result in greater expenses (because of the need for additional software).

So, choose well. Choose something that allows you to get up and running fast so you can start focusing on the most important part – marketing and sales!

10XPro has got a 30-day trial, which is quite generous, so if in doubt, just take it for a test spin.

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What if Love Wasn’t the Answer?

What if Love Wasn’t the Answer?

It can be found in some of the greatest songs of all time. It can be found in the holy scriptures. Perhaps a case could be made that it’s even written on our hearts.

We hold it on a pedestal. Because we’ve been told, from when we were young, that it’s worth sacrificing all else for. The movies we watch as adults communicate the same values.

Yet, love often seems elusive. And it seems to come and go. How can that be? Isn’t love the answer to all?

The Complete Non-Existence of Love

To embody the greatest truth would also mean to embody the greatest lie.

Because we live in a world of contrast, you cannot fully appreciate one thing (e.g. tall) without fully appreciating another (e.g. short).

Someone who says they love concerts cannot fully appreciate them without also appreciating quietness. I would not trust them if they didn’t also understand the value of quietness.

To appreciate love, to ascertain its existence, we would also need to confirm its non-existence. That’s the only way we can be certain about love. And that is a journey. A process. It may even take your whole life. It may not even be possible to understand in this lifetime.

To appreciate love, to ascertain its existence, we would also need to confirm its non-existence. Click To Tweet

Most people will say they know love. They’ve felt it. They’ve experienced it.

The question is, have they experienced the complete non-existence of love? Because their conclusions cannot be fully trusted if they haven’t experienced the opposite of love, whatever that may be.

Because I don’t think we can say for sure what the opposite of love is. Is it hate? Is it isolation or loneliness? Maybe it’s anger. There’s no objective answer because there’s can’t be. Love is not objective (as you’re about to find out). Therefore, its opposite cannot be objective either.

Love is Only Within You

If the preceding struck you as abstract, then consider this.

Whatever feeling you’ve attached to “love” is only within you. You cannot find it anywhere else.

You may claim someone else gave it to you. You may say that your parents or your spouse loves you. Or, you may even say god loves you.

I’m not saying that’s wrong, but objectively, there’s no way to confirm that.

I cannot find love within any part of your body, let alone anyone else’s. I only know a feeling that I’ve sometimes labeled “love.”

And that feeling could have approximated peace, freedom, relief, lust, euphoria, or anything else, depending on where I was in life and what I needed most in that moment.

We cannot say for sure that someone else gave you love. We can only say that love was within you, experienced by you. No matter what person, event, or circumstance caused you to feel it, you only felt it because it was already within you. You gave yourself permission to feel what you always had access to.

The person, event, or circumstance was unneeded. You could have chosen to feel love whenever. But you didn’t. And you don’t. So, the people, events, and circumstances serve as catalysts. They were given to you as a gift. Reminding you that love is, and always was, within you and not outside of you, to be accessed whenever you desired.

The Ultimate Ineffable

Further, love is impossible to define.

Merriam-Webster alone has nine definitions for it, along with multiple sub definitions under a number of parent definitions.

I’m not saying there is no way to express it. That’s untrue. Because if we don’t have the language for it, its very existence must come into question. We have words for all that exists. But we also have words for things we cannot touch or find somewhere outside of ourselves, such as love.

In short, there are seven to eight billion definitions of love.

We can’t know how everyone experiences love let alone how they want to experience it. Can you accept that people don’t all want to be loved the way you want to be loved? Because what they want to feel, and experience isn’t gong to be the same as what you want to feel and experience.

We can’t know how everyone experiences love let alone how they want to experience it. Click To Tweet

To assume otherwise is ignorance, arrogance, or an entitled sense of rightness. Wisdom can only come from complete humility and an acceptance that one knows nothing.

Remember – if you want to embody the ultimate truth, you must also embody the ultimate lie. Which means it can be as much of a burden as it is a delight.

Is Love Unlimited?

So, to say that love is the answer is an oversimplification of a much more complicated issue.

If you say you are going to spread love and be a beacon of it, that is certainly admirable and even noble. And it may even lead to tangible, positive results. But it does not guarantee that someone won’t be left out.

To give everyone love, you would need to first understand what love is to them. And be willing and able to love them in the way they need.

Which is why many rely on the divine. They say, “I cannot show everyone love. But I know god can.”

True, god can. But it must start somewhere. Even god relied on prophets, saints, and gurus to spread his word. If it does not start with you, then who will it start with? And how will it get there?

The answer is it will not. Because it did not start to begin with.

If you believe that love is unlimited, then you must also be able to spread it. Share it. And be willing to do whatever it takes to ensure everyone sees and feels it.

Impossible? Perhaps so. But how can you say love is the answer if you are unwilling to begin?

Losing Everything to Gain Everything

I am not saying that love isn’t the answer.

Then again, humanity has been around a while. I do not know whether it’s been 500 years, 3,000 years, or billions of years. There is no way to confirm.

But tropes like these (“love is the answer”) do not emerge out of nowhere. Surely, the prophets, saints, and gurus knew of love. And shared their messages with others. Perhaps more eloquently and poignantly than we ever could.

Which means this can be a cop out as much as an answer. It’s a good catchphrase to say. It’s a feel-good ending to a roller-coaster movie.

But it also means that we’ve tried love. We’ve done our best to spread it. To share it. To hold it up as the answer.

Most of us feel as though we would lose everything if we were to say, “love is not the answer.”

But that’s not true. The opposite is true – we would gain everything.

Because for once we would see what love is. We’d have found the greatest lie, and that would give us the ability to understand the greatest truth.

I do not know that love is the greatest truth, and I do not know what the greatest lie is. All I know is that to know all the nooks and crannies of love, you would need to know all the nooks and crannies of its counterpart.

Phoenix Rising

What about those who are incapable of feeling?

To some, this will sound as though mere semantics in a much grander, more important battle. But it isn’t.

Because we know those who cannot feel. They do exist. And they sometimes do things without thinking, without the slightest sense of remorse for actions most of us would consider wrong or immoral.

How can we show them love? Is it possible? Would it ever “land” for them?

I am not saying do not love them. I am saying loving them in the way we generally think about loving others could be naïve. Harmful. Dangerous. We could put ourselves at risk.

If someone cannot even perceive love, how do we intend to show them love?

I wish there were a silver bullet. I wish love were it. If only we could solve all the world’s problems with love.

We must accept that we cannot. We must accept love’s failure. Because a new consciousness and a new solution can only emerge from the ashes of a failure we accept. If we do not accept failure, there will be no phoenix rising.

If we simply say, “nothing will ever be perfect,” then we were never committed to love to begin with.

Final Thoughts

Now you’ve had the opportunity to consider and try on the complete non-existence of love. But only if you chose it.

If you did, then you can begin to fully appreciate love.

“What? I thought this was a case for the non-existence of love.”

No, it never was. The non-existence of love is the strongest argument that could ever be made for love. But without embodying that, you are like an unattended helium balloon quickly rising and floating away.

If you’ve embodied this, then you can also accept the burden of love, which is perhaps more substantial than you first realized.

Love is not all unicorns farting rainbows. No, it’s difficult. Complicated. Multi-dimensional.

If you’ve ever loved someone, you know this to be the case. Because you’ve hated the very person you’ve loved. You’ve felt many emotions towards them. Perhaps every emotion possible.

We can say, “love is the answer,” mean it, and even embody it. But not without fully understanding what it entails.

It cannot be reduced to a mantra or a catchphrase if we believe in it. Love is a verb. No action, no love.

If you believe in it, do not let another day go by without expressing your love for someone. Let go of the empty mantra and get into action.

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Going Backwards Sometimes Means Going Forwards

Going Backwards Sometimes Means Going Forwards

The challenge is we often assume things don’t need to fall apart to make way for the things we truly desire.

So, at the outset, it appears as though something bad is happening. When the reality is change is what you asked for. It’s what you wanted. It’s also what’s needed.

Adding resistance to it only makes matters worse. It’s kind of like placing the exact order you wanted with your server, only to wave them down to say, “no, that’s not what I wanted.”

“But you explicitly said it’s what you wanted.”

“Yes, but I don’t like the way things are playing out.”

And then you say it’s taking too long, or it doesn’t look like you thought it would, or the journey towards your order is just too difficult.

Well, what’s a server to do? They cancel your order, further delaying what you originally desired.

And then you start the process all over again, placing an order for what you wanted. Not realizing it was already on its way if you hadn’t interrupted it in the first place.

If we got off of how long it was taking, or how it appeared when it finally showed up, or the journey it would take to get there, and instead focused on the feeling we would have when our order finally arrived, we would receive what we asked for in good time. In perfect time.

The journey there could be bumpy no doubt, but if we just trusted, we’d get there.

I have a friend who recently had to find gainful side employment to sustain her business. What’s miraculous about it is that she has never felt freer or happier. She’s not putting so much pressure on her business to be everything in her life anymore. She’s loosening the reigns. And not only is her job going well, but her business is starting to do even better. She can have fun with her business again (which is the reason she started it in the first place).

See, she didn’t need the job at all. What she needed was the feeling that accompanied the simple act of finding an income source. Because that income source relieved her and her business of undue pressure. And now she sees her goals as being simple. Humble even.

The job helped her arrived at the feeling, however, so it still served a purpose.

What’s interesting about that is that the million dollars probably was never in the hustle. The constant grinding. The stress and the worry. The fixation on getting money. Putting pressure on herself and her business.

The million dollars was in the feeling. The feeling of relief and freedom.

What are you putting undue pressure on?

And how can you move into a better feeling space?

Do you feel a sense of relief when you think about persevering, or when you consider taking a different approach?

Each of us know, deep down, exactly where we want to go. And the “how” is irrelevant since the universe takes care of it.

It’s just that we allow a lot of muck to get in the way of our internal guidance system. That’s why we don’t see clearly all the time.

We place the order. Then we rescind it because we don’t like the wait.

Instead of seeing everything as “all in” or “double down,” simply intend a better feeling space. Because what you create from there is unleashing your inner superhero.

Move towards relief and freedom.

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