As a musician who is auditioning for orchestras and also finishing up school, I consider myself to be on vacation right now. No class, no auditions coming up, and my summer orchestra job hasn’t started yet.
Many people would look at my schedule and say, “that’s no vacation! There’s still a lot to do!” They’d be right. Most of us, no matter our field, can never fully relax and do nothing.
However, if we don’t use our time wisely, we can run around all day and feel as though we accomplished nothing.
Even during vacation, I like to set goals for myself and allot time to work on them. For example, today I set aside the morning hours to clean my room. It was a large task, but because I gave myself a time limit of having to be done by 1:30, I was able to accomplish it!
Vacation is also a great time to get re-acquainted with good health. Everyone needs a little TLC, especially when you’ve been pushing your mind and body. Essential oils are chock full of healing properties- and they smell amazing! I’ve been using PastTense frequently during the day.
It’s a tension blend of lavender, frankincense, cilantro, peppermint, wintergreen, basil, Roman chamomile, rosemary, and marjoram. Rubbing this on my forehead during the day brings clarity to my thoughts and relaxation to my shoulders!
Lastly, vacations can actually be productive. What? I feel as though I have grown a lot as a musician over the past couple of weeks because of the time off and the goals I’ve given myself. Don’t get me wrong- there have definitely been quite a few unproductive moments. As in, playing-games-on-my-iPad-for-a-really-long-time kind of unproductive. However, I’ve had a lot of fun pursuing hobbies that I normally don’t have time for (like writing!) and trying to make them into habits. I’m also enjoying practicing. I still have my recital in September to prepare for, but I have to time to explore the music from all different angles. Vacation has been great for cultivating my love for what I do. Like any relationship, our passions need our hard work – but also our nurture and care. I’m very easily entertained when it comes to classical music. A simple sequence in a concerto by Vivaldi makes me smile, and I could listen to Bach for hours. I listened to most of Mozart’s late symphonies and started on Beethoven symphonies when I was cleaning earlier today and didn’t once get bored. And I’m not even mentioning Debussy, Ravel, Brahms, Mahler, and the music by dozens of other composers I love. I can’t imagine being in any other profession than music, and I am so grateful that this time off has allowed me to grow even more passionate about the viola.