Your success. Your failure. Your entire freaking life.
There’s a neat thing I’ve noticed: you see what you’re looking for. If you’re looking for rejection or difficulties, that’s all you see.
It’s almost like we tune our brains to accept the truth we’ve already decided on.
So if you’ve decided that it’s hard to sell your work, guess what — you will struggle like mad to sell anything. If you’re looking for opportunities to showcase your work but inside you know it’s pointless, you won’t be able to find a way.
It’s the same thing with wondering if your work is good enough. Good enough to show or sell. Good enough to get paid for it.
Ah imposter syndrome, you bitch!
And oh, with art imposter syndrome is so tied into our self worth and our work, like a snake. If my work isn’t good enough, am I good enough? Good enough for what, I don’t know, but there it is.
Here’s what I know: we’re supposed to live in a state of joy. Maybe not a crazed state, but if despair is your constant bottom line, then it’s time to take a hard look at your life.
Here’s another thing I know: we each come with our own gifts and skills. Though we may have to hone them with practice over time, we’re all good at, or inclined to want to up level in certain areas.
Artists, I’m looking at you!
Born with the need to create art makes you an artist! You don’t need a certificate or to suffer for a number of years to achieve that title.
What you need is to realize that your work matters. When you share it online or with the world around you, your work has impact. It brings joy or deep thought. It inspires or delights (or both!). It changes the people who interact with it, in some way big or small.
You who were born with this need to create should understand that you don’t need to ask permission to create or share. Your permission lies in being alive with those gifts and inclinations.
When you recognize that, everything changes.
I’ve talked with so many artists who choose to live small because they don’t know if they can or should think big. The bottom line is this, if you think you can’t then you can’t. I know it sounds trite but honestly your success lies in believing in yourself (or faking it hard until you believe) and following through.
Mindset is everything. Once you get that sorted, the rest is just follow through.
We live in an era where you can reach a global audience, easily and inexpensively. If your mindset tells you that you must starve to be a successful artist, guess what happens? You sit there, starving while missing the opportunities that are right in front of you. It’s as if you’re wearing blinders.
So, start with this: what’s the one big, hairy scary goal you secretly want from your art journey? What is so huge to you that you barely admit it to yourself, much less say it out loud? Where do you see yourself going, if everything were guaranteed possible?
Imagine it a done deal. How does that make you feel? Embrace the done deal. You’ve achieved the thing. Really examine your feelings. You want this so much you can almost taste it.
Don’t let your brain tell you no. Don’t rationalize it away. Just sit with it.
When you embrace this amazing fantastical possibility, your mindset shifts. You start looking for ways to make it happen. Even unconsciously, you start moving into the right position to achieve what you want.
Conversely, when you embrace struggle and difficult sales and whatever negativity, you create that in your career.
Which would you rather have?
And if your mindset is what’s standing between you and what you want, do everything you can to shift it. Own your power as a creative professional. Own your power as the one who is creating your life right now.
It’s a mind fuck but when you mentally step into what’s possible, everything is possible.