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TPS #047: Pressure is a Privilege

Author: Andre Mullen - 2 min Read

Read Time: 2 minutes

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💡 Big Ideas:

1. “Pressure is a privilege” is a term coined and a book written by the late tennis great, Billie Jean King.

2. There are 3 reasons as to why pressure is a privilege: it makes you better, challenges your character, and paves the way for opportunity.

3. Pressure either breaks you or molds you into someone stronger.

4. As an artist manager, you need to shift your perception of pressure.

“The privilege of focus.”

When lost my client close to $500K, I knew that I couldn’t manage the same anymore.

I felt irresponsible.

I felt like a failure.

I felt like I practically destroyed my client’s career.

All of this pressure came from not paying attention to what mattered.

I embraced the pressure of not knowing and counted it as a privilege to fully focus on the problem.

It was time to plan the work and work the plan.

“Shift your perception of pressure.”

In today’s newsletter, I want to talk about the 3 reasons why pressure is a privilege.

The statement itself is not a new one. Tennis legend Billie Jean King’s famous quote became the title of her book in 2008.

In any game, fighting for every point is immense. What King urges is for competitors to have perspective – to recognize that by doing all of the work it takes to get to this point, and by overcoming all of the obstacles it takes to get to the highest level, these athletes have a privilege very few in the world get to experience – the chance to compete against the very best.

It’s a mindset that artist managers should embrace with their clients.

If you feel a sense of privilege and fortune when you face your or a client’s challenges, it frees you up to let go of the pressure and just do your absolute best to succeed.

Pressure doesn’t feel good and many artist managers won’t be able to get past the feeling. Hence they will continue to stifle their client’s careers.

"Pressure either breaks you or molds you into something stronger.”

Pressure is often viewed as a negative force in our lives. With it comes an enormous amount of stress and turmoil.

However, with each challenge comes an opportunity for you as an artist manager to present your best work when it matters most and engage with your client and internal and external teams in the most meaningful way.

When you perform under pressure – especially in the face of adversity – and meet or exceed expectations, it increases your contribution profile over time. It shows your client and 3rd parties your ability to rise to the occasion to bring favorable outcomes to pass.

Here are 3 important reasons why pressure is a privilege:

1. Pressure makes better, not bitter

2. Pressure challenges your character 

3. Pressure paves the way for opportunity

You know better than most as an artist manager, you can’t win if you don’t play. If you want to see your client win, you can’t do so playing it safe.

It means you must step in the ring, lean into the punches, and do your best to come out on top.

Let’s take a look at each of the reasons why pressure is so important.

#1: Pressure makes you better, not bitter

Consider pressure “the mother of performance”.

Even though you may perform well under normal circumstances, challenges always force us to apply all the knowledge and resourcefulness we can bring together.

Some people say they “work better under pressure”. Those who believe this are always reacting to situations and circumstances.

How you respond to pressure shouldn’t make you bitter. After all, it is widely accepted that we must put ourselves in unfamiliar situations or mindsets to develop our emotional and mental toughness for pressure.

#2: Pressure challenges your character

Pressure makes us better because we’re forced to think creatively and to problem-solve on demand.

However, you can’t get better if you sacrifice your character and try to bypass processes.

In other words, you won’t grow if you cheat, break the rules, or go against your moral code. That’s too easy. And when things are too easy, they don’t help you improve.

You should view pressure as a test of your ability to think on your feet, innovate, and thrive. It is your opportunity to do so within the confines of the given rules. This makes succeeding with the opportunity sweeter as your character is intact.

You either win with integrity or you don’t win at all.

#3: Pressure paves the way for opportunity

Pressure precedes opportunity.

It gives you the chance to learn, grow, and demonstrate your abilities.

Your representation of your client is an opportunity to take advantage of their confidence in your ability to perform. Your client trusts in your abilities – now you need to believe in yourself.

Demonstrating your abilities despite experiencing pressure, can greatly benefit your client’s business and overall career.

Pressure is the privilege to try ever harder, to win (and lose) bigger, and to experience going beyond ourselves.

Hope this helps.

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