Just because I don’t like attention doesn’t mean I don’t like singing. I’d sing for everyone all of the time if I could be off the stage, unnoticed and still give everybody the experience of feeling better and more motivated after listening. But I’ve been given the challenge. I find so much joy from keeping to myself to give me time to meditate and be still in an inconspicuous world, but I also find joy in sharing with as many people as possible the things that make me happy.
I found an interesting balance of the two of these while I was a mormon missionary in Chile for 2 years from March 2012-March 2014. I could walk around the streets talking to every type of person you could meet: old and young, wealthy and poor, content and depressed—You name it. I love people. I love hearing their stories. I love sharing with them things that I feel can motivate them to become their best selves. Sharing my beliefs and the things that filled my soul without expecting to get anything back felt amazing.Hardly anyone ever recognized me down in Chile for my music career, but I would sing for just about everyone I met. Many of them worked in the Chilean copper mines, while many others worked in the fruit fields. Others were teachers, students, security guards, small business owners, etc. I’d sing for people on the streets, in their homes or in their yards. For some reason I had some of the most fulfilling performances of my life singing for 1 or 2 people at a time, without the applause or notoriety of crowds—No way of keeping track of social media’s hits/likes/views. I realized music could touch me and them the same way it could having a special musical moment on TV in front of millions of people. For some reason, that moment of satisfaction isn’t about the numbers. It’s about that moment being real and honest regardless if it’s singing for 1 person or 1 million people. Whether it’s singing for the president of the United States or the old widow at the end of the street who lives by herself, it’s all about that moment of connecting person to person, along with this connection originating from something greater than me from above. I certainly believe it’s a connection with God.
So yes, it’s a challenge for me, but I don’t intend on giving up. I’m trying to find the balance of living a life that’s meaningful to me both personally (in my quiet and simple world) and career-wise (as a performer and musician.) Each aspect involves 2 principles:
1. loving people
2. keeping that spiritual connection with God
I’ve been continuously writing and in the last couple of weeks have been looking for producers to work with. I’m hoping I can work this time around with people who can keep me focused on the things I’ve told you about. Talented people who are good at their craft but keep the focus on the simple but special moment, instead of the pursuit of being “the hippest, biggest, and greatest.” To be honest it’s hard to keep that focus. You get tempted to keep up with everyone and everything else because it looks amusing. But learning from the past I know what that does does and doesn’t do for me.Do any of you have conflicting aspirations or goals? If you do, have any of you found a way to find a balance for them to work? If you haven’t, I hope this helps you think twice, and as you make progress please share it. You can share it here, and also be sure to share it with your family and friends.
There’s a reason the contrast of yin and yang find a happy balance to create something greater than if they were separated. I believe that balance comes from finding common ground, similar goals, and the same purpose. It’s up to you and me to find the way to make that balance happen.
David Archuleta, Contribuor
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