"It's not easy being the only daughter of the Pop Diva," she is quoted as saying. "Many people expect so much... they expect me to follow whatever my mom did. My mom had a colorful and successful career and I could not match that in any way. That's why I need to have my own identity. I need to be myself."
Aptly titled iDENTity, the singer’s debut album features a lot of self-written tracks as well as a song especially made for her by her father Louie Gonzalez. At her album launch last Thursday in Teatrino Greenhills, Kuh was in the audience, smiling as her daughter performed on stage. “"My mom and I, we've been through a lot in life,” Isabelle said, as she thanked the Lord for giving her her family, “She's always there for me and I am here for her as well. Though we may have many differences and misunderstandings along the way... we're still together.”
It looks like this young songstress is on her way to making her own unique mark in the music scene. Just like Isabella, have you found yourself having a hard time stepping out of the shadow of a successful parent, sibling, or mentor? Are you crumbling under the pressure, not just from others, but from yourself? Here FN gives you a few tips on stepping out on your own. Click on a tip to find out about it or simply read on:
- Acknowledge their influence, but commit to your own style
- Know who you are and express it in everything you do
- Use the advantages given to you by your connections wisely—never abuse
- Your advantage doesn't mean you can slack off; on the contrary, it means you have to work harder
- Don't do it to prove yourself to others; do it to prove yourself to yourself
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ACKNOWLEDGE THEIR INFLUENCE, BUT COMMIT TO YOUR OWN STYLE
You may get frustrated by comparisons, but do recognize that your style has indeed been influenced by your mentor, whether it's a parent, sibling, or someone else entirely. You may have gotten into music because of your mom’s constant singing; you may have fallen in love with art because you saw your dad painting as you grew up. You’ve spent a lot of time with them, even lived with them, in the case of family—there’s no denying that you learned the basics of the trade from them. At the same time, acknowledging your mentor’s influence doesn’t mean you have no style of your own. Your mentor may have planted the seeds, but the way you cultivate your skills depends on you.
KNOW WHO YOU ARE, AND EXPRESS THIS IN EVERYTHING YOU DO
Identity crises—we’ve all had them, more so if people constantly remind you that your style reminds them of a certain someone. The best defense against being called a mere copycat or a second-rate copy is knowing who you are and being confident about it. Embrace yourself and discover who you are. What are your likes and dislikes? What’s your personal style? What’s your ambition for yourself (and not someone else’s)? The more you understand yourself, the easier it will be to determine your style and stick to it.
USE THE ADVANTAGES GIVEN TO YOU BY YOUR CONNECTIONS WISELY—NEVER ABUSE
Social networking is at the heart of career and personal growth, especially in the world we live in today. If you have connections, by all means, use them because that’s what they’re there for: to help you grow. By that, however, we don’t mean using your influence to get a job without proper process. What we mean is to know where to look and who to go to for advice when you need it. Abusing your connections will only attach a stigma to your name before you’ve even had a chance to prove yourself.
YOUR ADVANTAGE DOESN'T MEAN YOU CAN SLACK OFF; ON THE CONTRARY, IT MEANS YOU HAVE TO WORK EVEN HARDER
While having an established mentor in the field you want to get into is an advantage, this doesn’t mean you have your work set out for you on a silver platter. In fact, this automatically puts pressure on you to excel as people expect you to equal or surpass your mentor’s success. Keep working, and work yourself hard, but remember that the biggest pressure you’re dealing with is the one you place on yourself. Cut yourself some slack from time to time and acknowledge the person you are and who you will become.
DON'T DO IT TO PROVE YOURSELF TO OTHERS; DO IT TO PROVE YOURSELF TO YOURSELF
It’s hard not to have an “I’ll show you all” attitude, especially when your challenges keep staring you in the face (i.e., the accusing eyes of your jealous workmates), but keep in mind that you’re doing this for yourself, and not for anyone else. They say revenge is sweet, but a hard-earned success is even sweeter. You’ll only feel satisfied once you’re able to tell yourself, “This is it. I made it on my own.” And you did this all for yourself.
(Photo courtesy of PEP.ph)
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