I heard a recent story about two musicians I know who are both being considered for the same gig. When one was asked about the other, he reportedly said,”I can play circles around that guy.”
Why would he say this? How could saying this help his situation? Perhaps, he shared these thoughts with someone in order to establish an early alliance against his perceived competition. If this was his goal, it would actually reveal his thoughts about himself. It may also reveal his thoughts about the people with whom he wished to work.
If he really believed he could “play circles” around the other musician, wouldn’t that be evident upon hearing them both play? Therefore, he either couldn’t have believed it himself, or he didn’t trust that the people he wished to work with would be smart enough to hear it for themselves.
He was afraid.
Fear causes us to make plenty of bad decisions. It’s impossible to mask it to those that see. Those folks who see are the cream at the top with whom we aspire to commune. Along with our scales, we may want to practice acknowledging the fear that resides in us before it starts coming out in our music or worse.
“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” Everything we say reveals who we are, whether from our mouth or our music. If we imagine who we want to be, we can begin to model that behavior. We play who we are. Choose.