Life is about balance and moderation. When you swing the pendulum too far one way or the other, you are setting yourself to fail. In a world where consistency is a key factor, you have to be able to find a balance to maintain and sustain consistency.
Let’s take dieting. I know from personal experience. About 4 years ago, I decided to see how far I could go to get shredded and look phenomenal for a photo shoot. For a few months, I was on a super low carb diet, working with a trainer, and I got there. I’ve never had that low of a body fat percentage. After that, I knew what the keys were to getting to a low fat body percentage, but over the next couple of years I struggled to maintain. My weight went up and down and pretty soon I found myself at the heaviest weight I’ve ever been. Today, I follow a plan that allows me to eat the things I love, but in moderation, and I’m more happy than I’ve ever been and I’ve been able to lose weight consistently without being super extreme. My point is balance. Restricting yourself so much leads to lack of progress, and ultimately a lack of consistency for a longer period of time. You will reach burn out.
This also applies musically. Practicing your craft whether it’s your voice or instrument can be an overwhelming task. You are balancing schedules, responsibilities, and life. Most people don’t have the luxury of practicing 8 hours a day. I’ve found that progress lies not only in the quality of practice, but chipping away at it day to day. So if it’s 5 minutes a day or 30 minutes a day, it’s way better than skipping and then cramming a bunch of hours in. The key is to find a way to be consistent. I live by the term, “if you stay ready you never have to get ready.” If I don’t practice and then all of the sudden I get an opportunity and then I try to cram in a bunch of practice, that isn’t going to help me. You have to exercise that muscle on a consistent basis so that when it’s time, it will work for you. You are already doing it. It’s a natural extension of who you are.
Remember that consistency is going to yield much better results and your ability to find balance is going to allow you to be consistent over a long period of time.