Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

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Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

Post by jaywilliams » Tue Nov 06, 2018 1:50 pm

hi guys -

I joined Taxi roughly a month ago, at the suggestion of my local music licensing mentor.

That was just enough time to book the travel plans, decide on a handful of tracks to share, and develop a website and marketing materials, but not enough time to properly (mentally) prepare for the Rally.

As an introvert, being around crowds and large numbers of people can be very draining, so while I'm married to someone who loves to attend conferences, I typically avoid them at all costs.

So if you self-identify as being an introvert, and are avoiding going to the Rally because of it, this post is for you.

A couple of suggestions from a fellow introvert, hope this helps in the true "paying it forward" Taxi style:

#1. STAY AT THE CONFERENCE HOTEL

If you're at all like me you will need time to hole up, rest, relax, take a nap, meditate, or just generally take breaks from All Those People Everywhere. This time around I stayed at La Quinta which was just down the block and a nice place to relax. But, had I stayed at the conference hotel I have a feeling I would have been able to eek out a few more sessions or encounters. That's worth whatever the extra room cost is.

#2. IGNORE YOUR FOMO

FOMO = Fear Of Missing Out.

There's so much happening during Rally, it is literally impossible not to Miss Out on something - many somethings in fact.

Accept it now. If you go to Rally, you WILL MISS OUT on many things.

That's OK.

Roll with it.

Relax and try to enjoy yourself.

#3. PACE YOURSELF

A three and a half day weekend doesn't sound like that long of a stretch of time, but remember that's 3.5 days of being surrounded by roughly 2,000 energetic music lovers and creators.

And there's so much information to absorb it really is like trying to drink from a firehose.

I personally burnt myself out on the first full day of the Rally, and on Friday night around 7:42PM I heard and felt my brain go Frrrrtz. The rest of the weekend I was barely present, but managed to absorb a little bit more information, I think.

My sweet spot for sessions is probably two per day, definitely no more than three, and spaced out if possible.

Your mileage may vary, but remember to be kind to yourself and trust your instincts.

#4. LEARNING AND ENGAGEMENT HAPPENS EVERYWHERE

This may seem obvious to experienced Rally attendees, but I wish I had seen this in advance so I hope this helps someone:

Don't focus so much on the sessions. (they are where your introversion will be challenged the most, often the rooms were loud and crowded)

Realize that you can learn from Everyone there.

Let it happen.

#5. GO TO THE MENTORING SESSION

Prior to the Rally, my thought loop was something like this:

"Oh, I won't go to the mentoring session. I don't know enough, it will be a waste of time, they could be spending that time on someone else."

At the Rally, after awhile I gained the courage to ask one of the helpful staff members to help me partner with a mentor.

The staff member (Eric) was very helpful and guided me to a friendly mentor who I felt really listened to my concerns of the moment, and gave specific advise that I'll be following up on shortly.

Hope this helps, see you at the top!

James Hagarty aka Jay Williams Productions
see you at the top!

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Web: jaywilliamsproductions.com
Songtradr: jay.williams.productions
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Re: Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

Post by Unstar » Tue Nov 06, 2018 4:53 pm

Thanks for sharing your detailed and unique perspective. I've been told I'm on the "recluse" and "anti-social" side of things. I have to admit the idea of being in that kind of environment presents some challenges to me.

This is completely at odds with me being the front person for our band. But a flip switches in that scenario and I'm alright. I could probably flip that switch for a rally. :But then afterwards i would require * a lot* of me time. :)

You also mirrored my thoughts on attending a rally right away. I feel like I'd need some time to have something of value to offer / showcase.
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Re: Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

Post by jaywilliams » Tue Nov 06, 2018 6:34 pm

I feel you, I think we have a lot in common.

Most people are surprised I'm an introvert, because I love helping people and have essentially always worked with the public.

The struggle is real, but as the story goes, true growth happens outside of your comfort zone.

Give it some thought, you've got a year to plan for the next Rally!
see you at the top!

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Web: jaywilliamsproductions.com
Songtradr: jay.williams.productions
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Re: Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

Post by AnneHouse » Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:01 pm

Jay - Great post!!!

I'm sure others have figured this out before me but I want to add something I learned last year

I wore my noise cancelling headphones everywhere I could. In the ballroom, in some of the breakout sessions, in the open mic, just walking around... The din of the rally is steady enough that it was cancelled out beautifully. I may have looked like a dork walking around with my $50 old school JBL over the ears on, but can't tell you how comfortable I was, how reduced my anxiety levels were, and how much extra energy I had all day from doing that.

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Re: Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

Post by jaywilliams » Wed Sep 04, 2019 9:05 am

AnneHouse wrote:
Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:01 pm
Jay - Great post!!!

I'm sure others have figured this out before me but I want to add something I learned last year

I wore my noise cancelling headphones everywhere I could. In the ballroom, in some of the breakout sessions, in the open mic, just walking around... The din of the rally is steady enough that it was cancelled out beautifully. I may have looked like a dork walking around with my $50 old school JBL over the ears on, but can't tell you how comfortable I was, how reduced my anxiety levels were, and how much extra energy I had all day from doing that.
Anne thanks so much for this suggestion.

As I generally avoid these kinds of situations I don't yet own a pair of noise cancelling headphones, I may just give this a try!

Cheers!
see you at the top!

James Hagarty dba Jay Williams Productions
Web: jaywilliamsproductions.com
Songtradr: jay.williams.productions
SoundCloud: jay-williams-productions

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Re: Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

Post by RonKujawa » Wed Sep 11, 2019 1:53 pm

I'd also add that even if you're an introvert, intentionally allot and spend time at the lobby bar, or at least near it. My first time there was super awkward until someone started a conversation with me. About a minute in, things got way more comfortable. We weren't even really talking about music business. Within a few minutes, someone else organically joined the conversation. A few minutes after that, another. I'm still friends with those people seven or eight years later.

On a related note, I highly recommend not going to the rally with an agenda when it comes to meeting people. Like, I want to meet a library owner, or find a collaborator, or a cowriter. Things seem to go so much better when you just have conversations with people. The beauty of this approach is you can be far more relaxed and not worry about your pitch.

That said, I think it's good to have your elevator speech ready so you can easily tell people what you do, but don't think of it as being an intro to a presentation. Fifteen seconds should cover it. "I've been doing music for film and TV for about a decade. Mostly acoustic guitar and rock stuff, but I've had some success with tension cues too." I do like to keep business cards on me in case I want to exchange contact info, but I often forget to bring them down to the lobby. I've exchanged contact info on the spot on my phone, though, or sent a FB friend request.

The short version is, for me, the rally became so much more relaxing and fun when I decided to spend time hanging in the lobby with absolutely no agenda.

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Re: Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

Post by hummingbird » Thu Sep 12, 2019 12:49 pm

"Realize that you can learn from Everyone there." - that's a great thought!

"spend time hanging in the lobby with absolutely no agenda." - agree!
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Re: Managing FOMO and All Those People Everywhere - An Introvert's Guide to Thriving at Rally

Post by jaywilliams » Sun Sep 15, 2019 5:48 pm

RonKujawa wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 1:53 pm
I'd also add that even if you're an introvert, intentionally allot and spend time at the lobby bar, or at least near it.
The short version is, for me, the rally became so much more relaxing and fun when I decided to spend time hanging in the lobby with absolutely no agenda.
Hey Ron thanks for your insights. Coming to Rally without an agenda and with an elevator pitch and a willingness to hang out and be sociable, that I can manage. You're not the first person to encourage hanging out at the bar - apparently that's where "it" all "happens."

I'm not a bar goer by nature, and the thought of intentionally and willingly hanging out at any bar, let alone one at this conference, well to be blunt it gives me the heebie-jeebies!

How about a nice, quiet, 7AM meeting over coffee? Is that not an option?

Either way I hope to connect with as many folks as I can manage, we're still patching our travel plans together but my wife and I will be there!

I'll be the one wearing shades, ball cap, noise cancelling headphones, and a camouflage hoodie but I have a feeling you'll spot me anyway...

Jay :)
see you at the top!

James Hagarty dba Jay Williams Productions
Web: jaywilliamsproductions.com
Songtradr: jay.williams.productions
SoundCloud: jay-williams-productions

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