Let’s just start out and say it: as music producers, we all overthink! We look at the DAW and overthink if we’re using the right snare drum, if our vocal sitting correctly in the mix, or (for the 1000th time) ask “is it finished?!” And that’s just overthinking on the music side. At Cosmic Academy we’ve taught over 500 music producers in the past 10-years. And we don’t just teach music production. We spend A LOT of time on Branding, Marketing, Signing Records, Pitching, Social Media, etc… And yes—our students overthink all that stuff even more!
Ok, so we know we have a problem here. How can we fix it? Are there any tools or tips to make it better? Of course. And at Cosmic Academy, we always have your back. Here are our 8 Tips for Producers who Overthink:
1. The problem is rarely the problem
99% of the harm is caused in your head, by you and your thoughts. If you tell yourself that something is a problem (even if it’s not) it will—quite literally—become a problem for you. People can obsess over something and cause quite a lot of turmoil for themselves. Go google your symptoms and you’ll end up at the doctor convinced that you’re dying haha! (from my own personal experience—don’t do that!)
Most of the time, the problem isn’t so bad. It’s ENTIRELY the way you think about the problem.
So, when a “problem thought” comes into your mind. Stop yourself. Ask, “is this truly a BIG problem? Or am I making it one?”
2. Stop “Self-Rejection”
You might be your own worst enemy. Don’t think the song is good enough to finish? Do it anyway. Don’t think they’ll reply to your email? Send it anyway.
We become so fearful of hearing “no” that we end up rejecting ourselves (before we’ve actually been rejected.) Our students at Cosmic Academy understand—rejection is part of the process—and it’s not necessarily even a bad thing. It’s a time to learn, recalibrate, and evolve.
Stop overthinking yourself into self-rejection!
3. Time and Silence
Most problems won't be solved by overthinking. You need a clear mind, and that comes with time—and patience. Don’t make a quick decision on a problem, wait till the next day.
There’s an amazing lesson from President Abraham Lincoln on this. When he wanted to say something or act on something, he would stop himself—and instead write it down in a letter. He would then force himself to put the letter away and sleep on it.
The next day—he would often realize, it’s no longer a problem, and it was just an instance of “in the moment” overthinking.
Patience is everything.
4. Start with a Question
Ask yourself: “Is there anything I can do to make a positive change on the outcome?”
IF the answer is “Yes”—take action. If the answer is “no”—move on. Otherwise, you’ll just
harm yourself by overthinking.
5. Stay in the “Now”
Some overthinking happens when we concentrate too much on the past or future.
Keep reminding yourself: you can’t change your past, and your future isn’t promised. All you have is now.
Focus on being in the moment as much as possible. This is a massive key for a successful career in Music Production. Our students at Cosmic Academy focus on being “present” and lead much happier and productive lives.
6. Check yourself and your own thoughts
Overthinkers will create scenarios in their mind that aren’t grounded in reality.
Most of the time, a “fact check” can help alleviate the stress.
Is the story in your head really legitimate? Is it likely? Is it even possible?
If not, check yourself—and move on.
7. Work on Accepting
Peace is found in acceptance. Accepting your past, accepting your imperfections, and accepting what you can’t control.
You don’t have to forget, tolerate, or even understand it… but if you want peace, you must accept it.
In the Music Business—so much is out of our control. Start practicing acceptance as soon as possible.
8. Healthy Body and Healthy Mind
We always preach this at Cosmic Academy—exercise, healthy eating and nutrition are all VERY important.
But so is meditation, self-love, therapy, and mental health.
Don’t skip on mental health… Everything starts with the mind. Your music production, your creativity, and literally everything in your career will be weakened if the mind is hurt.
We hope this helps!