Michael Engdahl

The Blog


Time: Make It.

“Time is a created thing. To say ‘I don’t have time,’ is like saying, ‘I don’t want to.” – Lao-Tzu

Life is nothing short of a balancing act. We are in a constant struggle of doing things now or putting them off until later, wondering if later ever comes. “I’ll get to that tomorrow,” or “It can wait” are unfortunately a daily part of our routine and mindset. Why should it be? We all have the same amount of hours in the day. Will you make the time for what needs to happen or wait until the time ‘magically’ comes back to you?

Time management is a skill all within itself. For me, it has always been a huge struggle. As a musician, how are we supposed to balance a regular practice schedule on top of performance demands, teaching, and have a social life on top of that!? As we improve, it seems as though our time becomes more and more limited and a demanding schedule takes away time from things we would normally be able to do in a timely manner (the dishes will clean themselves, right?).

Fortunately, there are resources to help us along the way. I was introduced to a couple books a few years back that have become favorites in my reading list and I find myself going back to in order to get new ideas, insight, and overall a great reading experience.

Manage your day-to-day. by 99U.
This book is a collection of insights from some of the most creative minds in the world. Topics include building a solid routine, using technology to benefit your work, and most importantly, sharpening your creative mind. I’ve found this book to be incredibly resourceful in developing a routine that best fits your needs. Some of us work better in the morning while others thrive during the night. What ever your preference, I’m sure you’ll find something that can benefit you. Don’t wait for time, make it.

Daily Rituals. by Mason Currey
Through personal journals, interviews, and letters, Currey lays out how great artists go about their business and work. I can’t think of a more entertaining and stimulating read than this book. It shows these masters in a completely different light and how important it was (for most of them at least) to adhere to a strict schedule. From Louis Armstrong to Nikola Tesla, there is something to be learned from all these creative minds.

We all have busy schedules. We all have responsibilities outside of our music or other passions. However, we all have 24 hours in the day.
This week, challenge yourself to make time for the things you’ve been putting off. Practice those extra 15 minutes of scales, spend a little more time on that transcription, take an hour to go exercise and clear your head.

What will you be making time for this week?


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