Posted by: Debra Alexander / wordmavenmusic | February 21, 2012

Oh! Why Am I Doing That?

Week 6 in the Canadian Songwriters’ Social Media challenge was all about blogging. I spent a lot of time checking in on blogs; subscribing to some new ones, letting go of some old ones, and reorganizing my rss feeds.

I was very heartened by katblahblog’s post in last week’s edition of Music Success in 9 Weeks, which was all about the inevitability of being a WIP (work in progress). So, taking up The Challenge with renewed spirit, I went back and fired up Manage Filter to inspect my Twitter feed. Oh. The stats there really threw me! But I fearlessly soldiered on. I decided to face facts—and see if I have any influence in the online world—by signing up at Klout. Oh. I really had to ask myself: Why am I doing this again? As it turns out, that is not a bad question to ask.

I found myself looking back at Week 1, and turning once again to David Allen’s blog for Getting Things Done. There I found a free podcast where he and Mike Williams discuss “Getting Things Done In Challenging Times.” They said that asking the questions “What’s the purpose?” and “Why am I doing this?” as you think about all your projects is an excellent step towards managing them. Are you on top of your game, delivering all that is expected of you? Are you doing things out of habit, or are you consciously choosing your work? According to  David, “If the volume and intensity and quality of commitments are not kept conscious, everybody overcommits like crazy.” We need to make sure our work is aligned with our purpose, which, they say, is the “ultimate intentionality.”

Our reputations are driven by our ability to align and achieve our purpose. Interestingly, Mike said, “your decision making process is almost a form of your brand.” OH! That reminded me, I never did finish my brand identity statement to my satisfaction. That moved me to call my brother-in-law, Hampton Bridwell, CEO of Brand Logic. Within ten minutes, Hampton came up with a tag line for me that says everything I have been trying to articulate (for years!) about what I do. In six words.

Now my task is to work backwards from the tag line and write something about how I actually deliver what those fab words say I do. Stay tuned for the big reveal of the tag line, and for my branding statement to be implemented across all of my social media sites. Hopefully I can actually finish that project before the nine weeks are up. But I know that if I actually achieve Music Success in 9 Weeks, as Ariel Hyatt promises, it will be because I am aligned with my overarching purpose.

“Do every day all that can be done that day.”

“Make each separate act a success in itself.”

“Do not separate mental power and personal action. Using mental power in one place at one time and physical power in another place at another time makes for inefficient, unsuccessful acts.”

“Every act can be made strong and efficient by holding your vision while you are doing it.”

—Wallace D. Wattles, The Science Of Getting Rich

“How total are you in what you do? Is your doing surrendered or non-surrendered? This is what determines your success in life, not how much effort you make. Effort implies stress and strain, needing to reach a certain point in the future or accomplish a certain result.”

—Eckhart Tolle, Stillness Speaks


  1. Debra, this is a fantastic post and exactly what I needed to hear. Thank you so much for sharing. The quotes are perfect. I may need to frame them for the constant reminder…. and I love your take on “music success” happening when we are aligned with our purpose. Amid all these social media tools we songwriters are exploring and learning, you’ve drawn out the essential core that each of us must embrace to really feel successful. Soooo important. THANK YOU. 😀

    • Aynsley, I am so glad you got something out of the post. Thank you for writing to me and letting me know. Sorry I had to miss your C’est What gig last week–hope you enjoyed that–I know it was a good evening from all reports.

  2. Hi Debra,

    Very nice post. I like the comment “Do not separate mental power and personal action…” A good reminder that efficiency is key especially with all the limited time we have.
    Next time we have this blog challenge I’ll participate. Just wasn’t ready this time.
    Thanks again. You’re an inspiration to us all.

    • Roger, I really appreciate the fact that you took time to read and comment. It truly makes the effort worthwhile, to get feedback like yours. Looking forward to reading your blog!

  3. Thanks for all these inspiring words, Debra! It was a challenging, time-boggling week. I really like the quotation about making each separate act a success in itself. cheers!

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