How To Be A Songwriter With A Mission

iDoCoach Blog

iDoCoach Blog


2018 and you’re getting tired of reading articles about resolutions, new leaf turning and goal setting. Probably even goes against some of your creative, spontaneous makeup. 

I’m gonna suggest 2 different versions of these practices. A mission statement and attainable goal-setting.

On A Mission

Big companies have them, small businesses have them. Here are a couple examples.

Life is Good: "To spread the power of optimism”

Warby Parker: "To offer designer eyewear at a revolutionary price, while leading the way for socially-conscious businesses.”

And…Starbucks: “Our mission: to inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time.”

All great but what I’m suggesting is coming up with your own personal one that relates to your songwriting. It should be simple, short and clarify your passion and philosophy.

Not easy to write but the more you can define and distill just who you are as a writer the better choices you tend to make. Can’t be everything to everyone so..who are you? 

Having your own mission statement to reference along the way is a terrific tool for any artist or songwriter.

You’re in the business of you and you need to know your business!

Small Bites

I like to ask songwriters about their goals before I start coaching them. The main reason is a hard one to hear because they may be unrealistic. I don’t mean they will never reach them, only that they need to accomplish smaller goals to have the best shot.

“My goal is to be a staff writer in Nashville making 100K minimum.”

“I see myself writing for major artists”

“I want to travel the world and write”

And an often heard one, “I just want to be able to quit my day job.”

These are great goals but without smaller, more attainable ones the frustration may kill ya first! I urge writers to set goals that are attainable in the very near future, celebrate them and re-aim. We all need affirmation in this business and creating a few goals that you can make is one good way of measuring your progress.

A Few Ideas

Set a goal of creating a simple webpage for your songs so people can find you. Decide to attend one major workshop this year and…gulp…network! Decide to seek out 5 classes this year, maybe not even all to do with songwriting but stretch your creative muscle.

5 Thoughts AS You Start The New Year

Ask yourself these from time to time, especially starting out this new year.

1. What do I want?

2. Why do I want it?

3. How will I get there?

4. What tools will I need?

5. Where am I now?


OK, maybe 1 more thought for 2018

An old Irish New Year’s wish.

“May you get all your wishes but one, so that you always have something to strive for!”


Mark Cawley

Nashville, Tennessee

Image: Shutterstock

I was pleased to be voted the #4 Songwriting blog worldwide recently. Check it out here.

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I'm currently coaching writers worldwide, online, one on one and taking new clients for 2018. Visit my website for more info or write to me at

Check out this interview in the recent edition of M Music and Musicians Magazine for stories behind a few of my songs!

About Mark Cawley


Mark Cawley iDoCoach

Mark Cawley iDoCoach



Mark Cawley is a hit U.S. songwriter and musician who coaches other writers and artists to reach their creative and professional goals through During his decades in the music business he has procured a long list of cuts with legendary artists ranging from Tina Turner, Joe Cocker, Chaka Khan and Diana Ross to Wynonna Judd, Kathy Mattea, Russ Taff, Paul Carrack, Will Downing, Tom Scott, Billie Piper, Pop Idol winners and The Spice Girls. To date his songs have been on more than 16 million records. . He is also a judge for Nashville Rising Star, a contributing author to  USA Songwriting Competition, Songwriter Magazine, sponsor for the Australian Songwriting Association, judge for Belmont University's Commercial Music program and West Coast Songwriter events , Mentor for The Songwriting Academy UK, a popular blogger and, from time to time, conducts his own workshops including ASCAP, BMI and Sweetwater Sound. Born and raised in Syracuse, NY, Mark has also lived in Boston, L.A., Indianapolis, London, and the last 20 years in Nashville, TN.