Yes, you know what I’m talking about. The internet. When producing your music: remove, cancel, discard, stop, erase, annihilate your internet. Why?
Why? Because when you are in a production session, after a few minutes (or more), you enter the “zone”, this state – often called “flow” – where time does not exist any more and where things come naturally.
Nothing is worse than a beep from your message notifications or a pop up from your email client to break this state. And it takes time to go back in this state (it seems that before the mind is more or less back to this state it takes around 25 minutes; much more if the incoming external information has a negative character of urgency, must do, problem…)
we all love internet, don’t we?
Remove your internet distractions
When working on a music project, disconnect Wifi, bluetooth, screen saver, screaming babies, etc.
If you are connected through wifi, turn it off.
If you have notifications on, turn them off. Anything that may pop up on your screen, turn it off.
Switch your phone off (yes, seriously).
If there are people in your household, tell them not to disturb you. Put a “do not disturb” sign if needed (applies to partner, kids, pets, housemates, cleaners…).
If you do have a limited amount of time, use an egg timer or an alarm on your computer.
if you’re limited in time, use an alarm clock (or the good old egg timer)
Don’t worry, when you come back to the “real” world after your isolated (and productive) session, the world will still be turning.
No you don’t need to check this “how to” video right now.
No you don’t need to see if you have received urgent emails (they can certainly wait a couple of hours).
No you don’t need to relax five minutes and have a quick browse on your Facebook (five minutes often turn to one hour without you realising it; and in one hour your track could have progressed sooo much).
No you don’t need to go to the kitchen get a drink (you should drink, preferably water, and your bottle should be within easy reach of your workstation).
No you don’t need to read this new SMS now.
You know very well that these “just 5 minutes” moments almost always transform themselves into one or more hours (don’t you?).
And then you are in the zone
That’s a very important concept. You are about to perform a deep work session where you will be in a state of flow, in the zone.
For more about Deep Work, read ‘Deep Work’ by Cal Newport:
For more about Flow and Zone, get books about ‘flow’ by Mihály Csíkszentmihályi and read https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flow_(psychology)
That’s when you’ll fly, your fingers will work easily and bring your wherever you want, the sounds will come, the ideas too, things will materialise. Some strange phenomena will occur: you’ll lose sight of the time (what, already 5 hours? I thought it was just one!), once you raise your eyes it will take a few seconds to reconnect and remember where exactly you are, you may have skipped a meal or feel hungry which you did not while on your project, etc.
These are incredibly productive moments, and you must aim to renew them as often as possible.
(tips for producers)