Return to swimming

I went lane swimming in a pool for the first time in ages yesterday.

It was so good to get back to it, of course after such a long time due to the pandemic.

I used to swim 200 lengths a week when I was doing my undergraduate degree. It does wonders for musicians in terms of encouraging the health of your muscles and playing and I recommend it to everyone in general.

I did 80 lengths, sharing the lane with someone else and we were both courteous to each others, he kindly let me pass a few times and in hindsight, maybe I should have booked a fast lane!

Being underwater, seeing through goggles, hearing nothing but the water, moving your arms and legs, getting the rhythm of your breathing secure and feeling your muscles work through the water. Besides that, there is the coolness of the water as you are immersed in it, the bright sounds created in a pool environment and the relaxation of washing the chlorine off and a hot drink. I have missed it all so much and look forward to getting back into more of a routine with it.

I use my space as an opportunity to encourage everyone to get into swimming if you can, because in so many ways, it works wonders!

One foot in the door

If you put through one foot in the door, how long is it before your full body follows?

This is a good question to ask oneself in relation to time and how you choose to spend it.

I was offered an exciting gig, and whilst my initial instincts would have led me to say yes because of money and opportunities, my further instincts and considerations drove me towards saying no, and I am glad I followed those feelings and stuck with my guns.

It’s easy to stay on a route once you are on it, if it offers certain things such as security. However, if this route is chosen at the expense of other desires, are you setting yourself a trap?

Not being able to have time for your own endeavours and initiatives can be frustrating, and it’s best to find ways to balance commitments so you can serve others needs as well as your own.

For myself as a musician, I have decided that as we move into the live scene, that I am not that interested in the cover gigs. I will happily do them now and again, but I cannot bring myself to do it every weekend for cash because in honesty, my true motivations lie in creating original works, and I would rather spend the time doing that.

Everything involves compromise, but I think it is good to not try to over-compromise yourself at the expense of your true desires and personal goals.

As a group in a room

I love the fact that I’ve done so many collaborations with different people, many of which have involved online exchanges and in quite a few cases with people I’ve not met in person. It’s amazing that such a thing can happen with the internet.

However, there’s the other collaborative approach, one that involves a group in a room together. There you are in the moment, reading the environment, the situation and the possibilities together. This happened for me for the first time in a while.

If you are willing to thrash ideas out, compromise, be open to options, try things out, allow trial and error, laugh at the errors, and jump for joy at the immediate successes, magic can happen.

I’m glad to say that magic happened today with my group and there are a lot of exciting and creative opportunities going forward.