When you read this title, “how to take yourself seriously as an artist” what does this mean? Well, I am going to break down the meaning of this how to, what “seriously” entails and whether or not you are ready to call yourself an artist.
As artists, we tend to get swept up in many different creative endeavors. The most important place to start if you want to take yourself seriously, is to have a clear vision of what you are desiring to accomplish. Everything that you do from that decision on should support that clear vision. Take a look at my post called “How to Set Artistic Goals”, to narrow your focus and accomplish your dream.
The reason you love to do what you do is called your “why”. Your why is the glue that holds your creative practice together.
Your art practice should stand on a foundation of core values, what specific art you are offering, who you serve and (potentially) what problem you are solving. Without this “glue” your art practice may become simply a “to do” list with no purpose.
Every time you take on a new task or project, ask yourself if it serves your why. If it does not relate to why you are doing what you are doing, then this creative progress won’t last.
If you don’t understand your value system and lean into your why, your creative practice will be inconsistent, scattered, feel irrelevant and lacking purpose. When this occurs, it is easy to hold back from showing up and sharing your work.Darlene Brink
Discovering your why for your business is key prior to any strategic plan, marketing strategy or online social media presence. Operating out of your “why” means that you put intention into everything you do, which means that you take yourself seriously.
Making money unfortunately is not enough of a goal to sustain your art practice. Knowing your why keeps you: grounded to your values, motivated to keep going, focusing on the end goal and connected to your audience.
The first thing I think of when I see the word seriously, I think of commitment. Commitment means that you have made a contract with yourself to follow your dream. Whatever that dream is for you, it means that you are willing to do what it takes to make it come true.
Have you made your commitment known to your social media groups, your friends, your family? Do you have a group of like minded creatives who can cheer you on?
Facebook groups are great places to meet like minded creatives who can encourage you and your commitment to take yourself seriously: to accept that you are an artist and are showing up in your artistic space.
In order to take yourself serious as an artist, you have to put in the work and show up consistently. It is important that your audience sees you showing up because they need to remember you and what you are known for.
Do you struggle with consistency as an artist? Have you tried scheduling your creative time and projects? If not, now is a good time to start.
Fellow artist, Heather Langdale shares this about daily practice,
There is really is something to the discipline of creating every day. You just never know what will come out, what wants to be created when you sit down in front of your paper.
A project like this (#100dayproject) is an investment in your creativity. People train for marathons or commit to 50 day fitness challenges or read 10 books a month. A project of any length is a challenge to see how far your creativity can stretch and if you have the stamina to keep going when the well feels dry. It might not always go the way you planned, but it’s worth starting and any number of days completed is good for you.Working With it For 100 Days
1. Tracking Success
Marking success (accomplishing small tasks or big goals) gives us the fuel to keep going with our creative work. If we do not look back and celebrate where we have been, we do not move forward with confidence.
In addition to marking your success, you need to celebrate it as well. The way that you choose to celebrate markers along your creative journey is up to you, just as long as you do it.
Tracking our belief in our signature affirmations is one essential way to track success. Through tracking our belief in our affirmations gives us the visible proof that we are changing, growing and becoming more of the creative we want to be. This visible proof helps us stay on consistent and persistent.
I am linking a few essential daily and weekly goal trackers which will help you set goals, create and monitor believe in affirmations and track your success achieved or in progress.
To take yourself seriously, you have to have confidence within your corner of creativity; how, where, when and why you show up. It is essential that you believe in yourself before anyone else will. Your belief in yourself determines how others will see and approach you and your work.
Confidence is one of the key reasons that artists succeed. Confidence is like a muscle, you have to exercise it to make it grow. Self worth, success, credibility, how we perceive and talk to ourselves all contribute to confidence.
Unfortunately there is this pesky inner critic within all of us. This inner critic targets our worth and makes us doubt our abilities and even our right to call ourselves artists.
The inner critic is an inner negative voice that originates from past experiences, environment and the view you have formed of yourself as a result of these environments and experiences. The inner critic involves a judgment of the creative process and at times can contribute to the halting of all creativity.
Here are some examples to help you with how to recognize your artist’s inner critic.
WHAT DOES YOUR INNER CRITIC SOUND LIKE?
- I cannot take risks
- I am not talented enough
- It is impossible to make money with my art
- My art practice is a waste of time
- I fear others will criticize my dreams
- My dream is ridiculous
Our inner critic erodes our sense of consistency, belief in our talent, showing our work to others, marketing and selling our art. If we are functioning primarily from the inner critic belief system, we will have difficulty in performing any of the tasks necessary to being a confident artist.
The following are ways to recognize how the inner critic is manifesting itself in your creative practice. Check in with how you are talking to others about your creative process. What are the words and tone you are using?
Judgment – What words do you use when you describe your creative work?
Reluctance – Are you hesitant to discuss your creative practice/work?
Procrastination – Do you have difficulty starting or finishing your creative work?
Feedback – How do you respond to compliments and criticism?
Did you recognize any of these, what do your words sound like? Do they include any like the ones on the list above? All of these ways you react are signals as to why you have difficulty being a confident artist.
The key to becoming a confident artist is to learn to challenge the inner critic. Would you like to learn the steps to challenge your inner critic so you can show up and share your creative work with confidence? Check out my free workbook, “Become a Confident Artist: Overcome Fear & Create Your Best Work”
I hope you feel excited to implement one or more of the ways for how to take yourself seriously as an artist. Only you can be the one to give yourself permission to take your practice and creations seriously, no one will do this for you. Once you have a clear vision and a consistent, committed practice, confidence will bring it all together.
Blessings from my house to yours,