I buy and download music to my iPod to workout. It’s predominately what I use my iPod for. More than once, I’ve discovered a “theme song” in the process. Let me explain…
One day, I trudged to the gym in the morning, entirely discouraged with my current project. I’m revising a proposal, and I was lost in the middle. Every way I looked, all I saw was hot sand, rocks and tumbleweeds representing my plot, subplot and characters being tossed around by the howling wind.
There I am chasing one way after that small tumble weed because I think I can catch him. But wait, if I lose that big one over there, everything will collapse! I drop the little guy and chase after the big one. But when I reach for the big one, he crumbles into four new tumble weeds and they all blow off in separate directions.
And there I am, panting, dripping sweat with my hair sticking to my face and neck. I’m turning in circles looking at all those tumble weeds, and it’s just impossible. How do I gather them all up and make a freaking story out of tumble weeds?
More tumble weeks blow by me, and I start looking for a bar. Seriously, there has to be a bar in this desert…I’m going to go in that bar and drink until I can’t remember anything about tumble weeds, plots, characters or why I ever thought I could write a book.
In other words, this is the place where I want to give up. Part of me really, truly, wants to give up.
This is where Theme Song comes in.
So that morning when I am utterly, hopelessly discouraged, I go to the gym. I’ve downloaded a new set of music, and most of my choices are random songs I’ve picked based on the beat. I start playing the iPod, get up to speed on the treadmill and a song comes on. Lose Yourself by Eminem. I chose it mostly for the fast beat that will keep me going.
But this particular song gets my attention and I begin really listening. Say what you want about Eminem, but this song throbs with his passion. The words are gritty, sometimes foul, and the beat is harsh, but this song that I’ve heard before suddenly hits me with meaning. It’s all about timing. This song is about Eminem’s passion to succeed. It is exactly what the writer in me is feeling.
The song resonates so deeply with me, my own passion to write rekindles inside me, then flares into flames that make me burn to write. I am seared with the need to find the true story of my characters in that mess of tumbleweeds. Determination heats my blood until I. Have. To. Write.
These are the two sections of the song that hit me deep in my writer’s soul:
Look, if you had one shot, or one opportunity
To seize everything you ever wanted in one moment
Would you capture it or just let it slip?
You better lose yourself in the music, the moment
You own it, you better never let it go
You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
This opportunity comes once in a lifetime yo
That became my “theme song” as I fought through the middle of my revisions to the end. Every time I needed inspiration and felt me fire dwindle, and the desert I was lost in grew dark, I played that song. And every time, that barren desert would light up with the reignited flame of my passion and determination.
And that’s my tip of the day to you. Are you struggling with something? It could be writing a book, searching for a job, getting a promotion, losing weight, learning a new craft.
Get a theme song for motivation. Exclusively for that one problem or goal, find a theme song, and use it. Pick the lyrics in that song and play them in your head when you feel yourself slipping on the road to your goal. Use that song to keep you motivated and working toward your goal.
As for me, I’m going to edit and polish my revised project and send it off sometime this week.
So have you ever had a theme song for anything in your life?