Wednesday, February 29, 2012

“Sometimes [it’s obvious that] I don’t know what I’m doing”

I’m going through a weird moment right now. I don’t know what I’m doing. Well, look, if I’m really honest with myself, I never REEEEEALLY know what I’m doing. Meaning, I never truly know what the outcome of what I’m doing is going to be. I essentially have no way of knowing if what I’m doing at this moment is going to give me what I think it’s going to give me. Often (always?) I don’t even know if what I think I want my actions to give me is what I really in fact want!


Welcome to my world.

The point is, I’ve arrived at a moment where I’ve lost sight of a bigger vision for why I’m doing what I do everyday. For years with Here II Here, I knew the purpose of managing that band was to release their music to the world and have them performing in front of increasing numbers of people. Simple. Those two basic ideas were the underlying thread tying together everything I did, every single day for about 4 years. Surely there were “bigger reasons” why those were my goals - to support the planet’s deepening experience of unconditional love, causeless joy and world peace through inner peace - but those bigger visions aren’t things I can actually do TO the world.

I can BE unconditional loving ... BE inner peace ... BE causeless joy ... etc. But I can’t otherwise afflict them on the planet ... even though I used to believe I could. Thank goodness I’m over THAT trip!

In any case, my way of serving the planet these last 5 years was to simply help spread Here II Here’s music. That job is now over.

These past two weeks, as I work with former Here II Here frontman, Ash Ruiz, to launch his solo career, I’ve had to step back and take in the bigger picture of why I’m doing what I do. I’ve been working with Ash for about 7 months now to get him going. We’ve relocated to Los Angeles from Miami, launched his innovative new website, recorded and released some great audio meditations, released his first music single, begun working on his first music video with an incredible director, and simply continued walking the path.

We recently decided to take touring off the table until we’ve built up more of an audience for him using online platforms like YouTube and Facebook and created more awareness of his music. Believe me, after 2 years on the road with Here II Here, performing well over 200 shows for maybe an average of 100 people at each show, as exciting as it can be, touring can be a wildly exhausting slog through time. I don’t want to put Ash through that right now before we’ve either (a) developed more of a hungry audience for him or (b) accumulated the resources to ensure we’ve got strong promotion for his touring that will bring people to the show. And with the internet, both are now more possible than ever.

Hmmm ... so maybe as I write this, from a certain perspective I do know what I’m doing. I don’t know what the outcome will be, but I do have a plan and a vision.

We are releasing his album soon, and his music video. We’re calling in the musicians of his new band. We don’t have all the financial resources right now to do what needs to be done, but by the grace of Being we’ve come this far. I’ve no reason to believe life won’t keep supporting our clear intentions.

It’s scary sometimes. After almost 5 years of managing these amazing artists, I’ve about run out of money. I was making $10,000 / month before I started managing Here II Here. The first month after I quit that previous work, I made $25 as HIIH’s manager. The numbers got better over time, but I’ve essentially been burning through the savings that previous job created for me, both investing in the band and paying my own way.

That bank is honestly about broke.

I’ve made fortunes before, and spent them, and made them back. I’m once again at a low point in that cycle. I’m not entirely sure what to do now. Even as we do the work, without a game-shifting breakthrough, Ash is months away from making any real money as an artist. My finances won’t hold out that long. Should I look for other work? I don’t want to be completely broke; I do want to put gas in the car and pay rent.

I’m essentially playing chicken with my bank account.

Ash Ruiz is a superstar. Everyone who meets him sees it. But whether the larger world embraces him as such is just beyond my ability to foresee or control. I can only trust that everything will work out ok, whether or not Ash ever breaks through. I can only put one foot in front of the other, even when I can’t see very far down the path ... even when I can’t see a path at all.

Right now, I’ve got crazy thoughts running through my head about sleeping in the Durango, having to bus tables at a restaurant just to pay for gas, looking for work in all the wrong places ... you know, silly thoughts about what life could look like if I completely run out of money.

Years ago I would have been a wreck thinking such thoughts. By now, though, I’ve done enough soul-searching to know I don’t have to believe those thoughts, and even more, that even if I do end up sleeping in the Durango, the worst thing that can really happen to me is still ... just a thought.

Fortunately, I know there’s enough incredible support in the Universe that if I sleep in the Durango, it’s because I CHOOSE to sleep in the Durango (and I don't intend to choose that for myself).

I’m on the leading edge of creating my own life. It can be unsettling out here because no one’s paved the way for me. No one is paying me for simply showing up. There are no obvious signs directing me this way or that. There’s not even the illusion of security out here. I literally have no idea what happens next, not that anyone ever does, but I’m just intensely aware of that truth right now.

I once heard the Path is made by simply walking it. I guess this is what that means!

1 comment:

  1. Bryan, I'm sure I don't need to say, "Don't worry, about a thing... coz every little thing, gonna be alright!" Anyway, keep the faith and pray every day and I bet things will unfold in a helpful way for both you and Ash... I always enjoy your blog updates, sending you love and smiles :) Matthew P.S. the right girl will come along at the right time - mine did eventually!!