Whether you’re a painter, writer or illustrator, where creativity if concerned, your mindset is your greatest asset.
As an artist it can be so easy to slip into the realm of comparison, lack of motivation and low morale, especially if you work from home (so are alone most of the day), you’re just starting out, or if your lineup of future clients is looking a bit sparse.
In the art world, jobs often rely on your own ability to reach out to strangers and convince them of how fantastic your work is. Confidence is essential.
Therefore, it’s really important to check in with how you’re feeling emotionally, and how your mindset might be hindering your progress. It’s so easy to run on autopilot that we often assume we’re on the right track, yet negative self-talk and comparison often creeps in.
It’s true that no one will respect those who do not respect themselves, so the first step to becoming a confident professional artist is constructing a continuous positive mindset and bulletproof sense of confidence.
Mantras can be a great way of reassuring yourself and replenishing your confidence. Even if you don’t believe them at first, over time your brain will begin to accept them as hard truths.
Try repeating these a few times a day, whenever you feel like you need to, or copy some out onto sticky notes and post them around your office.
Remember that the brain learns through repetition, so the more you get into the habit of reading your affirmations, the more effective they will be.
I am an excellent businesswoman.
It’s common for artists to believe in their creative abilities, yet think they fall short where administrative tasks like bookkeeping, invoicing and negotiating are concerned. Know that by creating your own work and putting it out there you already are an established businesswoman, and a pretty powerful one, too.
I create work of incredibly high value and vow to never under-charge for my services.
Try your best to ignore the unfortunate trend of artists working for very low wages, or for ‘exposure’. Know that your time is valuable and you deserve to make a great wage doing what you love.
I work hard every day and I deserve to take breaks.
When you work for yourself, it can be tempting to be ‘online’ constantly. There’s always an email that needs to be sent, a pitch that needs to be prepared, or materials that need to be ordered. Know that you deserve to let yourself rest, and there’s always tomorrow.
Nothing I ever do is a waste of time.
Nothing diminishes your self confidence quite like an unproductive day. You know the ones - maybe a new painting didn’t turn out how you’d hoped, a creative block prevented you from finishing your book proposal, or your laptop crashed multiple times. Try to see every slip-up as a learning experience, and trust that each day that passes is a day closer to achieving your goals.