Breaking Down the Walls


#242

Yeah definitely reconciliation.

Just need to take a deep breath and chip away at this thing one thing at a time. That’s my biggest issue. My life is a bit of a clusterfuck and I’m easily overwhelmed at times with how much I have to do.

I think it’s because I put a lot of energy into my music. A lot of thought, a lot of learning, a lot of pondering, a lot of testing theories, a lot of analyzing music. A lot. It just doesn’t seem to manifest in any way that could support me in the world at the current moment which is the struggle right now.

And that’s just for music. Then I’ve got my job working in IT where I also think a lot, troubleshoot, learn new things, etc. My music is a greater priority in my head, it just is. Mentally I’ve got energy for one focus, I can’t split it without sacrificing something. But I feel incredibly irresponsible just chasing these goals and working on improving my craft. At the same time I just don’t give a fuck about anything else in the job/career world. I’m actually angry a lot of the time that shit gets in the way of my music all the time. I quite honestly feel like someone sent me on a long fucking detour away from my path I should have been taking since I was younger.

I’ve reached a point where I don’t know if I’m incredibly dysfunctional and I need to fix it. Or I’m just not in an environment I can thrive in and I’ve been blaming myself for it all these years. But really shouldn’t you be able to thrive in any kind of environment if you’re mentally healthy and well adjusted?

I don’t really know anymore. All I know is I’m sick of feeling like I’m forcing myself to do stuff I don’t want to do. Life has been feeling like one big obligation vs an experience to be enjoyed.


#243

Overall I’ve been learning to be less critical about myself and surprise surprise, I noticed I judge others a lot less. And I will readily admit that I am incredibly judgmental, but I never liked it. It always felt like a war in my head where a part of me wanted to zero in on the flaws of others while another part was trying desperately to be a kind compassionate person. So when I judge people, usually as a knee jerk reaction, I’d feel like shit and a bad person. And truthfully I don’t feel like a good person most days. I feel self absorbed and wrapped up in my own world. But I can’t help it because everything is such a mess and I can barely take care of my own needs, so I’m not thinking of anyone else. And a long history of depression where I just tried so desperately to squeeze some good out of my life. It’s just a combination in life that doesn’t really result in the type of person who’s doing some good in the world.

On an unrelated note I feel like the music production module is influencing me more. With me being less critical I’m learning to drop the “true artist” dogma that I clung to. Meaning I wanted all my music to be unique, not simple, not derivative, etc. What I’m learning is still how much damn self worth is tied up in my music and that’s what gets in the way of creating. When I put that expectation on myself of it needing to be groundbreaking or unlike anything else, I pretty much close off the tap of ideas. You can’t have conditional creativity, it’s just way too limiting.

Music should be enjoyment for me. Whatever form it comes in. It shouldn’t be about proving anything to anyone. I’m at a point now where I’m trying to understand my ideas and where they originate from. Because sometimes if those ideas come from a place of insecurity and trying to prove something I become a slave to it and I don’t enjoy the process.

I think the other part is I’m such an all or nothing person. I’m either 100% or 0. There’s just no in-between. And again I think that’s just a self worth thing. It’s like I try to be incredibly good at everything I do try because I don’t want it to reflect poorly on my capabilities as a person. But at the same time I don’t even want to go that far. The fuel is insecurity and fear, not enjoyment or personal fulfillment.


#244

Ultimate music producer has definitely been giving me some enjoyable moments. I’m getting better at executing my ideas. I was working on something today and it was coming together a lot more easily than in the past. Lots of concepts I had in my head regarding music production are seeming like I’m able to do them without consciously thinking about the why.

It feels like I’m getting lucky, if that makes any sense. Usually I have to bang my head against the wall trying different things before it fits. But lately I’ve been able to just get it pretty close to what I want right off the bat. It’s funny because I think to myself, “ok this is coming out good but they can’t all be like this. It might just be a good day where things are working out”. Which is very limited, I should definitely take more credit for my skills I’ve developed.

I find composition itself is my greatest weakness still. Usually I’m good at creating 8 bar sequences. Since I can’t play piano it’s hard to just improvise or just let the recording go and record the playing. So what happens is I refine these 8 bar sequences which sound good, but it’s hard to connect it to anything else because my brain pretty much gets stuck on that one idea.

The other thing is I don’t take shortcuts with my music. Lots of producers out there are just using pre-made templates, sound packs, loops, etc. I think that’s fine to do, but personally it doesn’t feel fulfilling to me because it’s hard to sound like “you”. So while it takes a lot more effort and learning, I feel like the ultimate goal for me is greater expression through my music.


#245

Is this about 3 months in?


#246

Nah been less than a month actually on the music producer build. But alternating my customs seems to be working pretty well.


#247

I’m curious to try to the executive. But today is a rest day. Maybe tomorrow since I’m working from home and it’s my first day back from vacation and I absolutely have no motivation to do anything at my job. I’m trying not to get ahead of myself with how it’s going to effect me, but I hope it doesn’t just fill me with the “gotta do this” energy. I have a ton of that and it manifests as anxiety. My main issue is directing my focus and using that energy. Without know what the executive actually targets I’m not sure if it will help me or not.


#248

Ran Executive this morning before work. I noticed a little more focus at first, but nothing too significant. About 3 hours after listening I kept spacing out hardcore and actually lost focus. Lot’s of factors though. I’ll try again on Wed.

Overall feel like crap today. Coming back to work was like a shock to my system. I was able to follow up with some older tasks and newer ones. But my queue is fucking massive at this point and I don’t have the energy to dive in. I just look at everything, immediately get overwhelmed and just try to focus on tasks I can do.

I’m falling behind on shit day by day and it’s getting stressful with the new IT director that wants to figure out the causes behind more advanced system issues. My job is mentally taxing enough, I just don’t have the mental resources to dedicate to troubleshooting more complex issues. And he’s under the impression I came back “refreshed” from vacation ready to tackle more problems. Yeah, no. I’ve got so much shit on my mind.

On top of all that I found out today that this company I’m working for is actually continuing with tradeshows and they fucking assumed I’d be ok with traveling out there. Yeah no. Fuck that shit. I hate their attitude of “it’s your job”. No, I’m not a fucking slave to have my own emotional and physical wellbeing disregarded so you can make more money. I was fuming when I found out. It takes a lot to get me angry. But violation and lack of consideration for the well being of others is a HUGE raw spot for me. You can’t even make the argument that cases of coranavirus have dropped and the areas are “safer”. That’s not the fucking point. If someone isn’t comfortable with the idea of going there you should respect that. Regardless of what statistics say. We are not in a normal scenario and to treat people as if it’s no big deal is insulting.

I’m sick of thinking I’m overreacting when really it’s a case of this company treating me like shit. Essentially gaslighting me.


#249

Headphones snapped at the joint. Sending them back because they’re still under warranty. Major bummer, I can still work on music but it’s tough with my DT990s. They aren’t as accurate so I don’t want to work on anything I’ve been working on and screw it up with bad decisions. Maybe I’ll use this as a break and work on some music theory and stop pressuring myself to finish the track I’m working on.


#250

Decided I’m going to start using The Elixir Ultima and also Sanguine Ultima and leave it at that for now. I think what I really need in my life right now is some deep healing. It seems like my life has been a pattern of trying hard, coming up short, then beating myself up for it. I push and push for goals and to move my life forward, but I never truly stop to take care of myself. It always feels not good enough, that I’m doing something wrong, that I should be doing something better, that I’m just weak, that I’m just continually fucking something up in my life. Whatever difficulties I’ve faced in life, it seems they’ve left a lasting impact because of my association of what it meant for me as a person vs the events themselves.

I mean I’m running two custom subs now to achieve what I want out of life. The very nature of directing my attention to change is a form of action. It’s very small, but there are some people out there that don’t even bother changing or growing. But it just feels expected of me, if that makes any sense. It feels more like instead of it being about growth and positive change and self discovery, it’s this weird shameful push to get as far away from the insecure and emotionally damaged parts inside of me. The parts that make me hate myself and feel like my life is a just one big fuckup and nobody in my life really has any reason to like me as a person.

Sidenote I was running Elixir Ultima while making this post so I’m sure it was kicking stuff up. And I had a rough day at work today so that was stacking on top as well.


#251

Haven’t been posting a lot lately. I realized a lot of my journal was a way to compete against myself. To prove I was making progress, which inevitably lead me to comparing myself too much to everyone else around me that’s successful.

So every slight improvement I attempted to turn it into this life altering event and put unneeded pressure on myself that I wouldn’t slip back or lose it. But it just causes more stress than necessary.

It’s hard being an adult and feeling like you don’t have your shit together. Even worse when it feels like you’re butting heads with society and feel out of place.

Gonna post more later about a discovery I made with my music. Heading to work.


#252

As promised.

I had a moment of clarity over the weekend when I was working on my music. Specifically I don’t trust myself enough. I don’t trust in my decisions and I always feel like I’m doing something wrong. Which leads to a lot of self doubt, which leads to endlessly tweaking things and going nowhere, then getting upset I haven’t finished another song.

I think at the heart of all this is my unhealthy drive for perfectionism. I could have one little note off time or not hitting in the right place and it eats me up inside until I fix it. And sometimes it just snowballs from there and I hear everything that isn’t perfect. A synth with too much high end, a bassline that sounds a little too busy, drums that don’t punch enough, etc. The list goes on. But sometimes there’s nothing wrong, I just think there’s something wrong. And then I change ideas that were good for no reason.

Basically I’m my own worst critic and most people aren’t even going to hear 90% of the stuff I obsess over. So sometimes when I do finish a track it feels like my perfectionism won and I lost the soul of the music. And then I get depressed because I’m not doing what I want to do. Which is write music. I just get stuck trying to figure out how to make things “work”.

And I get really upset because I feel owned by this. Especially when I see other producers just not giving a fuck and doing their thing. It’s weird but it’s pretty much identical to what I’ve gone through in life. I feel like I’m not content to settle and because of that I have a harder road to travel than someone that wants to do things the easy way. I feel like if I just loosened up just 10% my output would increase by a lot and my enjoyment of making music. I guess I just don’t like the idea of taking it easy, like if I don’t hit that 100% mark I’m not doing enough or my music isn’t worthwhile.

I bought a whole bunch of new synth modules. One is an emulation of the Juno 106 hardware synth and the pads this thing can make are amazing. I’m hoping with a different palette to play with it’ll give me ideas and just having a bunch of presets to choose from without having to worry about designing my own stuff will free up my creativity.


#253

wow bro u healinig fast look at all this stuff u realizing
holy shii
dam bro you will be the next mozartt


#254

Lol we’ll see. Actions speak louder than words


#255

You know you’ve made progress when your own needs outweigh the fear of consequences and you take care of yourself.

This morning I got a text from the IT director at 7am that people were having issues getting on the server. My start time is 8. I promptly ignored that message and went about my day. If they want on call either pay me for it or hire someone else. You don’t get it for free.

That’s the thing. In the hierarchy of business related things I’m low on the totem pole. But I don’t give a fuck. That’s just a game people play. If they think they can control me just because I report to them they are sadly mistaken. I don’t do well in offices because of this. I have issues with authority figures and when they impose shit on me. I don’t care what perceived power they think they have, it’s an illusion to me. A well crafted one, but still an illusion


#256

I think I’m just tired of people taking advantage of me. Which is really ME not setting boundaries. So I’m angry at myself. I have to step up and put that line down that says no.

I’m just so wound up with this job, with my financial situation, with covid, with everything. My patience is hair thin for anything that threatens my mental wellbeing. And thinking about it my reaction to some of the stuff that’s been going on is more like a cornered animal than a human being. Which means I still don’t have direct control over my life and I remain too reactive to things going on around me. As much as being taken advantage of is a weakness, so is being led by my emotions and stewing over shit vs directly confronting it.

It’s hard being assertive in an emotionally mature way for me. It is a weakness. I don’t blow up like some people. But I eat it and stuff it down until I lose a lot of objectivity and start getting pissed at everything and everyone.And it’s not good because I’m not seeing clearly and I might assume things that aren’t even there or true.

Another thought. Maybe if I was in a better place a text at 7am from my boss wouldn’t have bothered me. But I care too much about myself now. I’m done compromising my own mental health for other people. I’ve done that all my life. If I need that hour to prepare for work I’m gonna take it and I’m not gonna feel bad about it. I have challenges, challenges that are probably largely invisible to others, but I have things that work for me. They may not be needed by others but that’s not the point, I’m me and I know what’s best for me and it’s important I don’t compare myself to others.


#257

Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. 1000 times fuck. I don’t believe this is my fucking life right now I’m fucking pissed. I can’t believe I have to put up with this fucking shit.

I talked to my boss today about the upcoming tradeshow in January. And he told me the only way it would be cancelled is if there was a spike in covid or the state shutdown. Otherwise it’s still on. Legally I cant do anything to get away with not going.

Nobody gives a shit about my concerns or has any regard for my mental health. I’ll be forced to attend this thing against my will. And you want to know why? If they don’t open when the tradeshow is open they get fined. Money. Fucking money prioritized over my well being. Shocker I know.

I don’t know if covid could kill me. I don’t know if I could suffer long term health issues that would ruin my quality of life. So I’ve been being safe and mindful. So to put me in a position like this, I’m so fucking angry right now. Because I lose that autonomy and I’m forced to abandon that for someone else’s fucking profit.

Am I blowing this out of proportion? Seriously someone tell me. How is this ok from an employer? I’m tired of this shit. Where you get criticized for just exercising caution.

If anyone has advice for me and how to approach this I’d greatly appreciate it. I’m considering just quitting on the spot. I don’t like how this company treats me. But that would be an unwise decision considering I don’t have anything lined up. This is the worst situation I’ve ever been in.


#258

Right now it’s pretty clear that you’re pissed. Angry and most likely scared beneath that (one of the popular masculine combos).

Those feelings are reasonable, but if it’s at all possible, now is the time to get calm and come up with plans. Like Plans A, B, C, and D.

Plans if I stay at this company

Plans if I leave.

Best and worst case scenarios and something in-between.

Before quitting, I’d first identify the authority person who 1) has a decent level of power and 2) is most likely to at least attempt to hear you out.

I’d tell that person that this is serious enough to me that I’m actually considering whether I might need to end my employment. I don’t like being asked to choose between my personal safety and my work, and I don’t think that these circumstances warrant that kind of forced choice.

If you have the bandwidth, end it with something like ‘I’m honestly not sure what to do here and I’m asking for your help. What do you think?’

(You want to at least try to give people some room to not disappoint you. Otherwise, you’re in self-fulfilling prophecy land.)


#259

At the same time, try to come up with some Entry Strategies. Not exit strategies. That’s simple: pick up your stuff and walk out the door.

Instead, put your focus on the next places you may try to enter.

It may take a while, or it might surprise you and happen very quickly.

But your job is to 1) put your feelers and imagination out there and get a sense of what openings there are; and 2) manage your emotions and try your best to keep them from covertly manipulating your perceptions, judgment, and decisions.

Labeling helps a lot. When you’re angry, instead of taking that as an inspiration to criticize what’s wrong in the world, own it and say “I’m angry”. Resisting the urge to project frees up mental energy that can then be directed to finding something better. Let your feelings just be your feelings for now and no more.


#260

Thanks a ton man. My head is so messed up right now. I feel like my own internal values were severely violated and it just short circuit my brain. That and the combination of me consistently failing to set boundaries and I ALMOST rolled over and went with this. But it’s too much. If I put my foot down on one thing it has to be this, it’s too far. I can’t keep living a life where I just do shit because others pressure me into it.

I’m scared. You’re right. And it feels weak. Because I can’t tell if others aren’t afraid or they’re coping in a different way by trying to be aggressive and “fight” covid by doing normal every day stuff in order to take control of the chaos that erupted from this. Idk. All I know is me. And I’m tired of my feelings coming second.

So thanks again I’m going to meditate on all this tonight


#261

Been thinking about switching to my less dense custom and supplementing with ElixirU. Or reconfiguring. StarkQ might have been too much for me. I wanted it all in one custom. Despite including a module to increase brain capacity. I think it’s my follow through ability. I’ve never been good with having multiple things I have to do and organizing them. I’m wondering if I have to cut back on the density so I’m less overwhelmed.

Then thinking about it I just really want to put my music first in life. I think when I first created my custom there was some serious fomo going on. So I loaded it up. Interestingly enough my less dense custom has AM in it and I immediately noticed after running it this past week how much more tuned in I was to not letting people take advantage of me and standing up for myself. Felt like a crossroads in my life with this whole situation I’m dealing with at my job. I either roll over and keep going along with things out of fear or for once stand up for myself and do what’s right for me regardless of the consequences.

On one hand I’m a little upset with myself that I overestimated my own abilities to handle that much in a custom. But on the other hand I needed to experiment to find what I could handle. I don’t think the everything and the kitchen sink approach is the right one for my mind. I think I still have to build stepping stones for myself to get to a place where all that could be integrated. Right now I feel as if it’s not necessarily the processing of the info, it’s a lot of my self defeating behavior that steps in.