The “nobody will like me” syndrome. So many writers I meet are afraid to co-write and afraid to play their music for anyone because they believe no one will like them. This syndrome is a killer. You will never accomplish anything with your music until you believe in your music and in yourself. Just do what you do best and act normal about it. Being humble is good but be confident and if you know you already had put your best in your work, don’t be shy about showing it to others. Yes, they might not love it, but they might give you some feedback that can be helpful.
The “my songs are better than the ones on the radio” syndrome. I’ve never heard anyone say this when it was true. Pro writers don’t go around saying that. If you really believe that, then you probably don’t have a realistic view of yourself or your music. Check the ego and work at writing better songs instead of complaining and bragging. Better songs will take you further than any amount of bragging or complaining will. It is true that sometimes, a tiny percent of songs on radio can be weak and nobody knows how they got air play, but it still doesn’t mean you should think you could write better songs than all those on the radio.
The “name dropper” syndrome. Professionals in the business can spot this one a mile away. When you start telling people all of the people you have “worked with”, they instantly suspect that your songs aren’t going to be very good. Pros don’t have to name drop. Their songs speak for themselves. Usually, name dropping is a symptom of insecurity working its way to the surface. Kick it to the curb and let your songs do the talking.
The “know it all” syndrome. Young artists are particularly susceptible to this one. They get a record deal and all of the sudden they know EXACTLY which songs hits and which ones are aren’t. They miraculously know more about songwriting than hall of fame writers who have done it for 20-30 years. The cure for this one is several failed singles and losing that record deal, and then if they are lucky, they would understand what the problem was! Don’t be the guy or girl that “knows it all”. It’s a long hard fall from that pedestal.
The “I’ll never be good enough” syndrome. With this one, you are sunk before you leave the port. Nobody can predict whether you will be good enough, but you can ALWAYS get better. Getting better day by day is the only way to ever be good enough anyway. So, drop the doubts and work at making every song better than the last. That’s the ticket to success. Staying grounded and cantered is one of the keys to succeeding at anything you do. Make sure you don’t ‘catch’ one of these ailments and you’ll keep yourself in the middle of the road!