The power of words

baby urns KH1357Most recently I have been working at the business side of my career. Marketing what I create.

And as you might guess, business and creatives go together like oil and water. For many. You know – left brain – right brain…

Now add to that – from a creative’s perspective – many of us are introverts, many of us question our talent, and many of us are very humble of the work we do create. From the marketing side, yes we have many skills, however we would much rather be creating instead of marketing. That means we have to become ‘not introverted’!

Society has set some pretty negative beliefs when it comes to putting together creative and success in one sentence. We are typically told “Oh that’s a good hobby!” or “Oh, you must be a starving artist?”  Both of those words are avoided emphatically in my vocabulary, and the statements make my skin crawl!
And yet we are inundated with those messages all the time! So you can understand why it is difficult for artists to combat the ‘starving artist’ stigma. Ok….I will get off that soap box and save it for another time….

So the introverted, humble creative has another side of the conversation that they deal with every day.

Questions like: Is it worth it? Is there value? How do you make a living with a ‘love’ vs a ‘guaranteed income’ doing something if you don’t love it?

When I was in the employment pool, I had the distinct pleasure of working for someone who will forever be my role model.
She worked with us as ‘partners’. Fulfilling her mission, we were a team. And I loved my job.
I brought this message home to my children. Do what you love and work for a place where they treat you like a team member.

And here I am – working for myself. (chuckle)
Which for many artists and creatives brings about the conversation about money.
How much is ‘successful’ and how much is ‘good enough’?
Not good enough as in – I am not trying hard enough. Good enough as in – I am in a happy place doing what I am doing. And I love it.  – That kind of good enough.
Let me put it another way… I have learned I don’t have to justify to others how much I am making. To me ‘life is not about getting rich in money‘ – it’s more about ‘getting rich in living‘!!!
That is such a humbling phrase, and so very packed with emotion to me. I get teary just thinking about it.

So when you meet someone who is a creative, and you appreciate the work they do? Tell them! That is all. Tell them that you appreciate that they are making the world a more understood and beautiful place. And STOP THERE.
Because if you go off on the tangent about starving artists, or being a hobby? You just disqualified everything you just said.
You are telling them that their creative investment is not as valuable to their making a life, as your job is to you.

And if as an artist, someone tells you “You’ve got the goods.”
You have my humble and jubilant approval – to get up and dance!

Living fully – carving a life,

Michelle

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