Season 4 – epiBLOG 7:
How many of you set goals? Dream with your hands behind your head as you lie down on your bed staring at the blank slate that is your ceiling? Or how many of you purposefully visualize your desired life with a successful career in your artistic field?
You even write a list of goals on a piece of paper or cut out images from an old magazine about what you think life should be like. Maybe you simply journal or write goals out on a dry erase calendar that’s hanging in your room or home office.
When you do think about your goals and dreams, a rush of excitement runs throughout your body and you stare at your list, imagining what life will be like after you achieve everything on it.
Goals. Visions. Dreams. They are all really nice things to have, but if you don’t physically create the causes in order for the effects to materialize, they will remain nothing more than images in your mind’s eye instead of the reality that you would like to live into.
I’m sure there are a million tools that you can use to reach your goals, and maybe even some that have yet to be discovered. Today we are only going to discuss one that can possibly help make all of the difference.
Today’s topic is on how to be CONSISTENT as an artist when you really don’t feel it.
Very simple and straight forward. I know. However, I also know the truth. Artists can get “lazy.” You feel like the extra effort that you put into your work may not make any difference at all. Avoiding risks and making up excuses as to why you aren’t further ahead can all feel very tempting when you feel so overwhelmed by your day job, money, family challenges, bills, a health scare… life in general.
In the midst of all of the chaos that life has to offer, you have your art that keeps you grounded. Your art that you want to one day use to make a living doing so that you can stop “starving,” or so that you can simply quit the job that you can’t stand going to every day.
I get it. I understand.
HERE ARE THREE TIPS TO HELP YOU BE CONSISTENT IN THE MIDST OF CHAOS:
TIP #1 CREATE A SCHEDULE TO MAKE YOUR ART
Create a schedule for when you will create your art NO MATTER WHAT is going on in your life. Obviously, schedules need to be created before the chaos ensues. Determine the days of the week and how many hours per day that you will create, and follow through on it. If you need to adjust the days or the hours, choose to do so. This is a commitment that you’re making to yourself. If you have challenges with doing this, I would suggest finding an accountability partner so that you can hold each other accountable for each of your desired goals.
Getting back to scheduling. If all you can do is create three hours out of the week to draw, cook, write, sing, sculpt, or design, then that’s what you do. You decide on what those hours will be. You decide if they will be a consecutive three hours in one day or if you will divide it out over the course of one hour for three days. This is just an example. However, figure out how many hours a week that you would like to dedicate to the actual creation of your work – not the marketing of it, not the social media of it, nor the networking part of your art, but the actual creation of your art itself. Do not use the chaos in your life as a reason, nor an excuse, to not create. If you need to start off small, commit an hour a week. Schedules and a willingness to stick to the schedule creates consistency with you being a working artist.
TIP #2 DON’T WAIT FOR INSPIRATION
Avoid the idea that you have to wait for inspiration in order to create your art. If you ONLY create your art when you are inspired, you can’t be consistent. Inspiration comes to you whenever it does. You can’t depend on it. Consistency involves a choice. You choose to do a specific activity at a certain time. As I said before, the commitment is to yourself. If you get thrown off track from your schedule, then make adjustments, but don’t let “life” getting in the way be the reason that you don’t complete your artistic goal/tasks for the day or week.
TIP #3 CREATE DAILY TASKS AND A WEEKLY GOAL
Set a weekly goal that supports the goal that you have for this entire year. For example, maybe your goal is to have 24 new songs completed by December 31, 2017. If you began the first week of January, you understand that you need to write a new song roughly every two weeks to reach this goal. You would then create daily (or 5-day a week) tasks that support you completing two songs a month. What would that look like for you? If you’re not a musician/singer, imagine your own artistic career here. What is it that you want to accomplish by the end of the year? What do you need to do each week in order to make that happen? It’s literally a matter of being consistent with your daily tasks that you create in your schedule in order to reach your small goals that will help to support your overall bigger goals.
Today’s LESSON is to choose your own schedule to make your art and to stick to the schedule even if you don’t feel like it.
FUN ASSIGNMENT: Try something new or up your “game” with consistency. If you’re not doing anything with your art right now, consider how much you can put into it within any given week. It should be something that is manageable with your current schedule so that you don’t get overwhelmed and quit. I would suggest setting an attainable goal that causes you to stretch yourself. I would then suggest writing down daily tasks that you would need to do in order to reach that goal. I would then create a realistic schedule to not only complete these tasks, but to also allow time to create your art. You have to constantly build your portfolio, and the only way to do this is to create. I wish you the best with this… and please share your successes!