Not many singers can say they have sung Nelson Mandela’s favorite song to him on his birthday, have performed with the whole world watching during the World Cup, or sold-out tours in the U.S.A.

But, South African singer-songwriter, Miss Lira, can! With various awards and critically acclaimed albums on her shelf, Lira has plenty career advice we can watch and learn from.

1. Be open to inspiration

Lira talks about personal influences and explains the effect Stevie Wonder has had on her growing up: “Music unifies people and expresses feelings they might not be able to articulate. That made me want to be a songwriter. I thought, if there’s any reason to write music, that’s a good enough reason right there.”

Inspiration for a career or a business can come from reading , observation and listening to others. Being open-minded can really open new doors for you.

2. Choose what makes you feel good

“I used to be an accountant, and chose to become a musician. And that whole transition, going from earning a great income to starting a career as a musician… I was like, am I out of my mind? What was I thinking? But I just wanted to feel good. On a daily basis, I wanted to feel excited about life and my plans.”

If what you do for a living is not fulfilling, if it’s not what makes your heart beat faster, it’s not too late to chase after your career dreams.lira

3. Work with what you have

A great quote from Lira: “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are right now.”

You may not have it all at once, but you’ve already got something. Lira lets us know it’s most important to keep going, and not let temporary circumstance weigh us down.

4. Explore your options

Lira’s American fans had been reaching out online, requesting her to come sing in The States. But prior to her huge U.S. tour, Lira took some time to check out the scene, and did a mini-tour of 5 shows in different states.

“We had sold-out concerts. There was quite an interest in what I had to offer.” Trying out venues and styles of delivery for your service or product can help you specify your professional approach and guide your career direction.

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Photo credit: AfroStyle Magazine

5. Allow yourself to break away from pressure

In a 2013 interview, Lira explained that after 9 years of non-stop work, she wanted to take some time out: “I want to be able to just be, and not feel pressure for a while.”

Encourage yourself to work as hard as your time allows you. And when necessary, after long, busy days, a little time to decompress will have you back on your grind extra strong.

6. Find power in humility

Lira tells us she can find beauty in Africa, America, in Europe, in the East, but: “There’s something that Africa can offer to the world, that the world needs today. There’s an element of humility that we have, that I feel the world has forgotten. We still have a sense of community.”

Taking values from your home front into your business can help you keep track of both your personal and professional growth. If what you’ve learned growing up is accurate to how you want to do business now, that’s something you want to keep close.

What other lessons have you learned from this power house’s journey? Share them with us.

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