Indie Artist Tips: How To Handle Rejection

Powerful Indie Artist Tips on How to Deal with Rejection

Pursuing a career as an independent artist is hard work. Whether you plan on staying independent. Or even if you plan on going mainstream, it’s still a hard goal to accomplish. Even with the new age of social media and easier access to fame and celebrities, it’s still very hard to truly become a successful artist. You have to make sure you stand out as an indie artist. You have to constantly work on your craft. You have to consistently brand yourself. Then you also have financial responsibilities concerning your career. However, one of the hardest factors about being an indie music artist is handling rejection. That’s something a lot of artist don’t want to talk about. It’s not easy. But the reality is it’s apart of the process. Learn these 7 powerful indie artist tips on how to deal with rejection.

1) Don’t give up

Legendary rapper DMX was actually turned down by P.Diddy. However, he didn’t give up. He kept going and eventually got signed to Def Jam Records.

One of the most important indie artist tips is to never give up. I’m sure you’ve heard that before. All aspiring artists have heard it. No matter what career or industry you’re pursuing, you always heard the phrase “don’t give up.” As cliche as it may sound it’s very true. As an indie artist there’s a guarantee you’re going to face rejection and set backs. Initially, it may discourage you. It may make you ever considering giving up. However, no matter how hard it gets, giving up won’t make it easier. It also won’t benefit you in the long run. Another thing you have to remember you’re not the only indie artist who have set backs. Many independent music artists deal with rejection. Many successful, mainstream artists have dealt with rejection in the past. It truly is apart of the process. Legends such as Mariah CareyDMXDestiny’s Child and more were all turned down by label executives early on in their career. If you ever feel like giving up and want to get re-inspired just turn to these powerful quotes below.

  • When you feel like giving up. Remember why you started.
  • I already know what giving up feels like. I want to see what happens if I don’t.
  • Don’t give up. You’re already in pain. You mines well get a reward for it.
  • When you want to give up just think of the people who would love to see you fail. Don’t give them that pleasure.

2) Greatness takes time

One of the best indie artist tips to help you stay focused is to know that greatness takes time. Some are aware of this. However, many aren’t. Many think that greatness happens overnight. A lot of artists in particular are under the impression that if another artist is great, they’ve always been great. Many think if someone is exceptionally talented they came out the womb like that. Sure they were born talented and with a gift but it also took time to develop and master their greatness. However, if you as an indie artist is unaware of this it could cause you to hold yourself to unrealistic standards. It could cause you to compare and even doubt yourself. You as an artist have to understand that greatness takes time. If you’re ever wondering “how to grow as a music artist”, one of the things to keep in mind is that greatness takes time. Give yourself time to master techniques and skills that align with your natural born talent. If you’ve ever been turned down or rejected as an artist, consider that maybe you were turned down because your greatness wasn’t fully developed yet.

3) Every door isn’t for you

If a door won’t open, sometimes it’s because it’s not your door. Don’t try to force it.

The third lesson on the list of indie artist tips is the fact that every door isn’t for you. This is sometimes a hard reality for many to face. Whether you want to know how to become a solo artist? How to make it as a rapper? How to become a successful independent artist? Or whatever goal you’re focused on that relates to artistry. The important thing to remember is that every door isn’t for you. Maybe you got rejected by that producer, record label or gig because it simply wasn’t your door. Maybe it’s not your door because something bigger is in stores for you. It may be hard to digest at the time but it’s a reality.

4) Something better is waiting

Grammy award winning vocalist Jennifer Hudson is a great example of having something better waiting for you as an artist. She didn’t win American Idol but she went on to have an incredible career and win an Oscar as well as a Grammy.

When facing rejection as an independent artist one of the best tips to remember is something better is waiting for you. At the time that you’re getting turned down this may be hard to grasp. However, it’s very true. There are many cases with successful indie and mainstream artists where this happened. The artist may have gotten turned down and within a matter of weeks to months, something better was waiting for them. This happened with plenty of now mainstream artists when they were younger and appeared on star search. Most of the artists who lost the competition actually went on to become stars. This also happened with singer and actress Jennifer Hudson. She lost the season she was on the show American Idol. However, something much bigger was awaiting her. A few years later she got the role as Effie for the movie Dreamgirls, which won her amazing praise and an Oscar.

5) Not everyone is going to like you

No matter how talented you are, one truth you must remember is not everyone is going to like you. This is a huge fact that many indie artists must accept. A lot of artists have the terrible misconception that because one person doesn’t like them, it means they’re not good. This is simply not true. One of the most important indie artist tips to understand is that not everyone is going to like you. You could be a great artist. You could be extraordinary. This doesn’t mean everyone is going to like you. Maybe you’re simply not they’re cup of tea. Maybe they rejected you because they’re not into your style. However, this doesn’t mean you’re not good. It also doesn’t mean others won’t like you. This stands true for worldwide mainstream artists as well. As talented, iconic and loved as Michael Jackson was, he still wasn’t every single person on the planet favorite singer. However, it doesn’t change that fact that he was incredibly talented and deemed the “King of Pop.” This goes for many other artists as well.

As talented, iconic and famous as Michael Jackson was there are still people who don’t deem him their favorite artist. However, this doesn’t take away from his talent.

6) Go harder

Sometimes as an artist you know you’re good. You know your strengths and you know you have what it takes to make it. However, you may still need some work. You may have to perfect your craft just a little bit more before you’re ready to move to the next level. This may cause some music professionals to reject you. But there’s no need to get discouraged. This should just motivate you to go harder. Sometimes you’re not going as hard as you should be. This can be the difference between scoring your big break and getting turned down. So next time you’re reject don’t get discouraged. Simply just come back harder.

7) Be prepared

Perhaps the most important item on the list of indie artist tips is to always be prepared. As an indie artist pursuing a music career you can never be prepared enough. You never know who you’re going to encounter. You never know what they may expect of you. They may want you to sing on the spot. They may want you rap for them on the spot. It’s your job as the artist to always be prepared for opportunities like this. You may have gotten rejected for that gig, show or opportunity because you weren’t prepared. The best way to get to a level where you’re always prepared is to constantly work on your craft as an artist. Develop your style. Know your weak and strong points as an artist. Find what makes you stand out as an artist and work it. This will make you shine as an indie artist and guarantee to impress anyone you encounter.

There are countless tips and words of encouragement on how to handle rejection. However, the only way any of these indie artist tips will work is if you believe in yourself. You have to believe in yourself in order to win. You have to have confidence in yourself as an artist and know you’re good. No matter how local or entry level people may seem you. No matter how much criticism you face. Or how many haters you encounter. In your heart you have to know you’re good. You also have to know the rejection is only temporary. Jay-Z said it best when he once stated “always know you’re great even before others do.”

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