I went on America’s Got Talent and got kicked off the show. They told me I’d never make it as a performer. And then I started doing YouTube and then everything took off.
“When your passion is what you do for a living, it’s very hard to not become a workaholic.” – Lindsey Stirling
If you’re not happy with the person you are today, I 100% believe that you can change.
Evan: She’s an American violinist, singer, songwriter, composer, and performing artist.
Her music video, Crystalize, was the eighth most watched video in 2012.
As of July 2016 her YouTube channel has over eight million subscribers and over a billion views.
She’s Lindsay Sterling and here’s my take on her top 10 rules to success.
Rule number two is my personal favorite and make sure to stick around all the way to the end for some special bonus clips.
And, as always, as Lindsay’s talking if she says something that really resonates with you, please leave it in the comments below, put quotes around it so other people can be inspired as well. Enjoy.
Rule #1: Love What You Do
I think, honestly, being true to yourself is the absolute key to being successful in this kind of a model. Because you can’t fake authenticity, you can’t fake loving something.
And honestly, to any artistic form or medium, you have to work so hard to get your stuff heard or seen. And so if you don’t absolutely love it you will burn yourself out and the only way I’m able to do what I do is I’m almost a workaholic because I love what I’m doing. And it’s okay.
“I think, honestly, being true to yourself is the absolute key to being successful in this kind of a model. Because you can’t fake authenticity, you can’t fake loving something.” – Lindsey Stirling
Because I’m enjoying it and because I love the people that I work with, it doubles as work and recreation and if I didn’t love it it would be impossible.
#2: #Believe In Yourself
I went on America’s Got Talent and got kicked off the show, they told me I’d never make it as a performer. And then I started doing YouTube and then everything took off.
“You can’t let anyone else tell you who you are and how good you because, everyone has their own opinions” – Lindsey Stirling
And so to be able, to be invited back to one of the biggest shows in America and a show that I got kicked off of, to be invited back, it was a really cool experience just because a lot of people don’t get the chance to redo a moment of their life that was very devastating. And to be able to go back on that stage and do it the way I wanted to do it and be able to give the performance I wanted, it was really awesome.
Interviewer: There were also critics on the show, the judges were not always nice with you. Wasn’t it like judgment day where you felt like, “Ha ha, I’m back and this time I’m a star.”
You know, kind of, it was. I hope that my fans and other people saw it that way, in the way of, you can’t let anyone else tell you who you are and how good you because, everyone has their own opinions, but I hope that they see, “Wow the same way Lindsay didn’t listen to them “and she went back and was able to prove them wrong, “I can do that. ”
If someone at school is mean to me, it doesn’t mean “that I’m a bad person, it doesn’t mean I’m a dork “or a loser, I can become whoever I want to be.” And I hope that people see that because that moment proved that to me and it’s true.
Rule #3: Don’t Lose Sight Of What Matters
I wish, so when I first started I wish I had realized that people were the most important thing to me. Because there was a time, you know, I’m such a hard worker and when your passion is what you do for a living, it’s very hard to not become a workaholic.
And there was a time where I just almost lost sight of everything that was most important to me because I was working so hard and I was pushing so hard for these dreams and these goals and everything I wanted in life, and my life started to look very gray and colorless and I realized I had lost a lot of depth because I wasn’t making time for those most important things, which are my family.
You know, the people in my life or someone that maybe needed me at a time, but I was too bust to even notice. And those are the things that you can’t, you can’t fulfill your full passion, whether it’s through music or art or dance, if you’ve lost sight of the things that make you a real person.
And I had to refind myself, almost, like, “Wow, what is it that makes me me?” And once I re-found that it’s like everything else came together again. I was able to write again, I was able to create, but without those things, then you lose sight of everything.
Rule #4: Rise From Failure
I think like you said, every single artist goes through that. And I think a lot of times you think that the great writers are the people, they just write hit after hit after hit, and they do but it’s also because they get through all the terrible songs first. And, I mean, I think that’s kind of every single artist story.
“Be able to rise form the failures is what makes a successful person.” – Lindsey Stirling
And, I mean, I love to tell, when people ask, “What’s your best advice for an upcoming musician, “or anybody?” I think it’s that you have to be able to rise form the failures is what makes a successful person. ‘Cause everybody’s going to have mishaps, they’re going to fall down, and it’s the people that continuously pick themselves up that are the ones that are going to find their voice, make it, whatever you want to call it.
Rule #5: Give Your All
Interviewer: I love how for this record you had fans actually do little videos that talked about what they were brave enough to do in life. So for you, what was the moment you realized you were brave enough to do this full time, just go right after your passion?
Oh, I think it’s once I discovered YouTube. I mean, I had already been going for it with full force but I was kind of wondering if I had what it took to make it and I was really discouraged at times ’cause everywhere I went I just kept being told, “No, you’re not good enough.”
“I’m going to, I don’t know how “this is going to work out, but I’m going to chase this “with everything I’ve got.” – Lindsey Stirling
And that can be really discouraging and so even though I was going for it, I was kind of in the back of my mind just really scared. Like, “Am I going to make it, I don’t know.”
And then when I finally discovered YouTube and I put up my first video, I just felt so empowered and so excited because I was like, “Whoa, finally something’s working.” And that’s when I was like, “I’m going to, I don’t know how “this is going to work out, but I’m going to chase this “with everything I’ve got.” And that’s when I was like, boom!
Rule #6: Create Something Unique
Interviewer: And what about the appreciation of hip hop and EDM, which both have played a role in what you do musically? When did you first encounter those and how did you come to love them?
I really fell in love with EDM when I first heard, I always liked techno music, I felt like it was kind of, for lack of a better term, it was great white girl dance music.
I’ve always loved to dance and I was like, “Oh these beats, I can dance to this.” It’s not quite as, doesn’t need as much groove as hip hop did. So that’s why I always like EDM and then I really fell in love with it when I discovered Skrillex, especially Bangarang.
That song, I was like, “Oh my gosh, I have to figure out “how I can pair the violin with this weird dubstep stuff.” ‘Cause it was so fun and it made me want to move. And that was the beginning.
Rule #7: Focus On The Good
You know, it never becomes, I don’t think it’ll ever be like, “Oh, I don’t care, I don’t care anymore.” Because I do care, it’s my art, it’s my love, it’s my passion. And certain comments you’re able to like, “Oh whatever,” but there’s some comments that get you in the place that you’re a little bit vulnerable.
Interviewer: That trigger you.
” It’s so true that you only really do have one stage in your mind that you can really focus on at one time” – Lindsey Stirling
That trigger you, they get you, you’re like, “Don’t talk about that, that’s actually something “that I care about and I’m sensitive to.” And I think it’s so important to realize that, especially in YouTube there is so much good, but for some reason it’s easier to focus on the negative because it just, it gets you so much more.
Interviewer: You’ll get thousands of positive comments and then 10 negative.
One negative, you’re like, “Oh dang it.” So it’s so true that you only really do have one stage in your mind that you can really focus on at one time, and so the good, the bad, they’re going to come and what are you going to focus on? Am I going to sit and stew and respond, especially responding, if you respond to the negative, that is a lot of times the one that you want to respond to.
But it’s like, “Or am I going to feed the good.” Am I going to feed these people who keep coming back and telling me really nice things, that’s where I should put my energy, that’s where I should put my thoughts and focus and it does take a lot of, you know, concentration to do that.
Interviewer: Yeah, awareness too.
Awareness, that’s the word I’m looking for. But I think that’s the key is just there’s good and bad all around us, everywhere and trying really hard to focus on the good and let that feed you.
Rule #8: Step It Up
You know, every tour I like to try to step it up. I want my fans that have, a lot of my fans come to multiple shows and so I always want them to be surprised when they come back.
I don’t want it to feel like the last Lindsay Sterling show. And, you know, “Been there, done that.” So I always try to do something that I’ve never done before and this tour is a lot of fun.
“Every tour I like to try to step it up” – Lindsey Stirling
There’s some new tricks I have up my sleeve that I, you know, I worked really hard to learn and to master these new skills, but anyways, super excited about it.
Rule #9: Have Courage
I think the courage to be really open about some of the things I’ve been through in the past all comes from experiencing those things and when I was going through, say, when I was going through some of these things I felt so alone and a lot of girls, or people, do.
You feel like nobody can understand you because a lot of these problems deal with isolating yourself and feeling alone. And one of the things that really helped me have the courage to change was I realized that I’m not alone. There’s actually people who understand me and there’s people who have actually overcome this.
“The courage to be really open about some of the things I’ve been through in the past all comes from experiencing those things and when I was going through” – Lindsey Stirling
And that gave me hope and so that’s why I really strive to give a positive message of hope about, like, if you’re not happy with the person you are today, I 100% believe that you can change. So that’s what I like to hopefully share with young girls and I would say that’s what gave me the courage to share.
Rule #10: Invigorate Your Passion
I’ve always played the violin ever since I was six years old I begged for lessons and I’ve always played. And it was actually when I was in college that I kind of just realized one day that I didn’t love it anymore and I used to love it. And I specifically didn’t study music in school because I didn’t ever want to have the love of my music beat out of me.
So it kind of broke my heart when I was like, “I don’t even enjoy this anymore.” And os I started thinking, “What can I do to invigorate “my passion?” I started playing with bands, I started anywhere I could go to kind of try out new styles of music and I’ve always loved electronic music and it just hit me one day, “I need to play and write the kind of music that I “am loving right now.”
And so I did and it just brought it back to life for me, it made it so creative and I became a creator, not just a musician and that’s I think what invigorated my passion.
Evan: Thank you guys so much for watching, I made this video because John Thoren asked me to. So if there’s a famous entrepreneur that you want me to profile next, leave it down in the comments below and I’ll see what I can do.
I also love to know what did Lindsay say that had the biggest impact on you, which rule did you enjoy the most? What are you going from her message to immediately apply to your life of business? Please leave it in the comments and I’m going to join in the discussion.
Finally, I want to take a quick shout at Steph Reveron. Steph, thank you so much for picking up a copy of my book, Your One Word, and sending in that picture of you at the cafe reading it, I hope you’re enjoying it and getting a lot of value from it.
So thank you guys again for watching, I believe in you, I hope you continue to believe in yourself and whatever your one word is. Much love, I’ll see you soon.
Do It Yourself
It’s the same way kids look up to Taylor Swift and they want to get a little guitar and be Taylor Swift. My parents used to take me to orchestra concerts and so that was my version of a rockstar. I was like, “Oh my gosh, I have to get one of those “wooden things.”
But yeah, I played classical violin all growing up and I started to just, I had gotten burnt out and I wanted to love it again and so I started experimenting with all different sorts of music and I found out that I absolutely loved EDM and electronic dance and dubstep music and nobody, no record labels thought I was worthwhile or that my project was marketable and so I started doing it myself on YouTube and that’s when it just kind of, “Whoa, I guess it is marketable,” is what I kind of discovered.
Surround Yourself With Great People
I guess I surround my crew, my tour crew, I surround myself with really great people. I have the best tour crew and so they kind of, I mean honestly, just say one day I wanted to be crazy and went out and got drunk, they would all just be like, “Whoa.”
They would be so turned off they’d just be like, “What are you doing?” They’d probably take the beer out of my hand and be like, “Come here, Lindsay, what’s wrong with you?” Because they know me so well and they just, they’re there to protect me and help me, as well.
“I surround my crew, my tour crew, I surround myself with really great people.” – Lindsey Stirling
I wasn’t like I have always been a very optimistic upbeat person. When I first came to college, it was a time that I was trying to figure out, “Who am I? What makes me special?” And I started to find most of my value in the fact that I was thin. For several years I had no idea I had become anorexic.
“Any time there’s a change to be made, you have to realize that there’s somewhere else you want to be. And I wanted, basically, to be happy.” – Lindsey Stirling
And be places with people I cared about, but what I was thinking about was the extra grease on the pizza or the calories that I knew were in that shake. And I just was talking to my mom one day and I broke down crying because I realized for the first time that I had a problem and that this isn’t normal.
People don’t think like this. I finally realized I wasn’t happy. Any time there’s a change to be made, you have to realize that there’s somewhere else you want to be. And I wanted, basically, to be happy. That was far more important than being the skinniest girl in a room. Once I realized that there was a problem that’s when I could change. I knew that I could be happy again.