Riding the Roller Coaster

roller_coasterWouldn’t it be great to spend more time feeling positive about your creative career and less time worrying?  While there is no magic bullet, here are a few tips on how to manage the ups and downs of the artistic life…

1. Envision your career 6 months from now. Draw a picture, create a collage, or find an image that represents where you want to head and keep this visual reminder in front of you every day. This is your motivator when your journey goes through rough patches.

2. Take steps to build your vision for the future:

a. Widen your network – You have more contacts than you think. Use mind mapping or any technique that works for you. Capture all the areas of your life and the people you know in those areas who can encourage or support you. Then contact them.

b. Create new ways for people to find you – Your work will find a larger audience when you get regularly engaged with social media and when you actively explore strategic alliances with others. Reach out and stay active.

c. Maximize  emotional support – Know your triggers for meltdown; buddy up with a colleague to strategize about new ideas for marketing your work.

3. Think like an entrepreneur.  Keep 10 irons (possible projects) in the fire at all times; you never know which ones will come to fruition, and it will likely be only one or two of them that take off.

Most importantly, focus every day on being grateful. Use journaling in words and/or pictures to capture all the good things that are happening for you right now. The secret to success is to concentrate on the things we can control and take full advantage of opportunities for growth.

* Originally appeared on Canada Arts Connect Magazine.