There’s a myth in artist world that it in order to be successful and see your dreams come true as you have to let go of your stability.
It’s more like a hero’s story or a rite of passage that has become readily acceptable.
In order to truly prove that you’re worthy of the success you receive that you must have gone through the trials, tribulations, eat beans and sleep on floors all in the interest of “making it.”
You’ve heard the story. Even the new mega folk star, Valerie June was recently in a Rolling Stone article talking about being a struggling artist in Memphis most of her career and leaving to chase her dreams in the Big Apple playing her music in dive bars at night and doing odd jobs during the day to have money to eat.
Now, at 35 she’s a “Star.” She’s made it and she “earned her stripes.” I think this story is amazing. However, I think it’s equally amazing a story like Lin-Manuel Miranda (Creator and Director of the Smash hit Musical, “Hamilton”) who had a pretty stable life as a playwright with a wife and children who’s stability allowed him to take time off and create this play that now has a successful run on Broadway and has won every award under the sun.
What if you not only want to be a successful creative but you also want to go on vacations a few times a year, have stable income and a great relationship?
What happens when you’re willing to “Wait” for the right opportunity, say “No” to the shitty paying club, build a business that is outside the realm of your artistry or stay at your job a few more years WHILE you pursue your artistic endeavors at night?
In this world, you’re labeled a sell-out or entitled.
What in the world makes you think that you don’t have to be a starving artist?
Why do you think that YOU deserve to see success when others have tried and failed or given up their dreams altogether BECAUSE they wanted those things too?
I ask you, why does it have to be one way or the other?
In our world we’re told that you have two paths as a creative: Stability at the expense of your dreams or dreams at the expense of your stability.
In both of these scenarios, everyone loses.
Listen, there’s no need to feel shame because you want to slay like Beyonce AND have a 401(k). It doesn’t mean you’re less hungry than the next artist (Unless you mean literally. Then yes you are less hungry).
And it IS only impossible to have both if you say it is.
Entrepreneurship is the path to having both. Quite honestly, I believe it’s the best way.
Since I’ve been coaching creative people, this is what I’ve worked with them to create or expand. Their businesses and in turn their lives. This is what we work on in the Mastermind.
The business provides the stability that opens up your creativity and allows you to not only live your dreams but also be happy, stable, define and achieve your own level of success.
Yes it may take some figuring out. Yes you MAY move a little slower, but the joy on the other side is so worth it.
All the artists that you admire (the happier ones) are business owners.
In our history, yep, Mozart, Frida Kahlo, Michaelangelo….all entrepreneurs.
Beyonce has businesses. There’s a machine running underneath her. She’s not just making money on album sales and concerts (those are add ons).
Yes ok maybe they do 2 films a year instead of 4.
Maybe these artists go on tour every other year instead of every year.
Maybe they release books and films a couple years at a time and then take time off.
But is that really a sacrifice if they can also have a life they enjoy and be present ? I don’t think so.
Listen, you need to ask yourself what you’re really chasing here. A good life? All that money and fame will not be fulfilling when you’re tired, drained and creatively feeling bankrupt and emotionally spent.
And if you think that suffering for success is the only path, I suggest you get on my newsletter list because I have a thing or two to talk to you about.
You CAN have a life.
You CAN have stability.
And yes you CAN live your dreams too.
It’s up to you to make that decision and move accordingly and hey, if suffering is your jam, I don’t judge you. I’m just here to tell you...there’s another way.
All I ask is that whatever you choose, that you commit.
Make a decision of the type of life you want and decide to yourself the path you want to take to it.
Then, get yourself some support. The right mentor and right community to support you through it because one thing’s for sure...you can’t do it alone either way.
My prayer is that no matter which way you choose...I hope you achieve your level of success.
Send you ALL my love.