Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Bigger Things

"Each man should frame life so that at some future hour fact and his dreaming meet." - Victor Hugo

Maybe not everyone, but many of us feel like we were meant for bigger things than what has happened in our lives so far. And it’s really tough because the life we want to lead seems so much larger than we can tackle at this point in our life. But one thing I realized this week while on a birthday trip to Chicago is how interesting it is to look back and see how it all worked out from the days of dreaming. We may feel small at the time, but one day we will look back on where we are, and see just how far we've come.

When I was in my early twenties I lived in Chicago alone. I went back to school there, and then dropped out of college to work. Though it was a real growing experience for me and I wouldn't trade that time for the world, I was poor as dirt and my music dreams were just that – dreams. I played in a band, but worked in computers and sports.

I would dream of what I knew I wanted to do with my music, and would imagine someday moving to a place like Nashville, but it seemed like such a fantasy that I wasn’t really sure how I would ever get there. I could
The View When We're Young
point there, I could try and imagine it, but at that time in my life it just seemed too far out. I elected to just start to work on my skills, and really began to woodshed as an arranger and songwriter.

And after leaving Chicago, I continued to work on what I have heard called lately “career capital”. I love this concept. What I started in Chicago (and before in my teen years), carried on when I moved back to Kentucky and started my business, and eventually brought to Nashville, was the capital I had been storing up the whole time. Bit by bit I built up 20 years of experience that now is what I base my career and my living on.

Riding the subway train in on the same route I used to take as a poor twenty-something, and now being somewhat in control of a creatively-led life, it was interesting to look at the city with more mature eyes. At this more comfortable point it was like I was giving my former self permission to be young and stupid. It was like saying “Hey, keep the dream, keep envisioning your future. One day you’ll get there, but it will take a while.”

The View We Have Later
So that’s what I will say to those of you who are at the starting gates with a dream to be a singer, songwriter, musician, artist, actress, or whatever. Keep dreaming. I know it may seem unattainable right now, but things don’t come magically. They come by hard work, year after year, building that career capital. Get good at what you do, and keep researching, networking, and going to the city where you know your industry is.

One day you may look back at where you are now and it may seem like a very small point that you see in a totally new light. At that point you too may look back on the struggle it is now and smile.

Trust me, I've been there!

Have a great week!

Eric Copeland is freshly back from the streets of Chicago, the sights and sounds of Navy Pier, the opulence of Michigan Avenue, and the tastes of Pizzeria Uno and Al’s Beef. With his senses restored he’d love to talk to you about where you are on your creative journey. For more info, go to http://www.CreativeSoulOnline.com

For more on "Career Capital" see the post "So Good They Can't Ignore You".


  1. Well said Eric! Really liked the photo perspectives.

  2. Eric, I love the concept of "career capital"!

  3. I like the idea of "career capital" also. Makes seasons of my life that I might otherwise view as worthless seem hopefully worthwhile.

  4. Exactly Dianne! And if you guys like this concept I also blogged about it in http://forthecreativesoul.blogspot.com/2013/06/so-good-they-cant-ignore-you.html

    This book is where I got the idea. Written by a professor, it's a studious look at the difference between skills and passion.

    I finished the book and think it has alot of merit.



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About the Author

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Eric Copeland is an author, producer, keyboardist, songwriter, and president of Creative Soul Companies. What is Creative Soul? Our main goals are to inform, encourage, and assist Christian creative folks in ministry, no matter where they are in their journey. Thanks for reading! Find out more about us at http://www.CreativeSoulOnline.com