In the last five years that we’ve been in business, we’ve had a lot of people through our doors. Every once in a while, someone will hear our story and say something like, “I wish I could…”
I wish I could sell my art full time, I wish I could start a recording studio, I wish I could go on tour with my band, start a webcomic, write a novel…Fill in the blank.
And we get it. Looking at where you want to be from where you are now can sometimes seem like an incredible expanse. There are so many steps to take and obstacles in the way that it can seem impossible to make it happen.
But things aren’t always what they seem. Here are a few things to remember.
Just like Rome, your dream life wasn’t built in a day. Making the jump from day job to dream job in a single go isn’t the way things usually go.
For example, when we quit teaching, we didn’t start MAKE the next Monday. There were a lot of steps in the middle. First, I started making art again—even while I was still at the school. I started an Etsy shop and applied for some craft fairs. There, I met other artists and got to know them—what they cared about, what they needed.
A successful life is made one day at a time. Make intentional time each day to do the things that give you life. Take some of your social media time and spend it creating instead. Find opportunities to share it with others. Over time, it adds up.
Don’t Sweat the Details
Usually when you work for a company, there are a lot of things taken care of for you. Your payroll department might pay your taxes. HR might choose your insurance and pay your retirement. The company legal department can protect you from liability.
If you strike out on your own, you have to worry about all of those things yourself.
When we first started, all of those details hung over us like a dark spectre, casting a shadow of anxiety over us.
But there’s good news: you don’t need to have it all figured out to make the jump.
You don’t need to know everything about self-employment taxes or captive insurance or copyright law to get started. You can figure all of that out as you go.
Just focus on the things you know and care about, and the rest will fall into place.
Don’t Stop Looking for Opportunities
You can have all the talent in the world, but that won’t lead to success if you don’t have an opportunity to share it.
Ever day, we have chance encounters that could take you to the next step in your goals. It might be a person with connections. It could be an application to a contest. It might even be someone who likes one of your posts on social media.
Don’t take these opportunities for granted.
When I was meeting local artists at craft fairs and getting to know what they needed, I saw an opportunity to start a community resource. When I saw an open storefront near our house, I saw an opportunity to open a space. Five years later...you know what happened.
Make it a habit to look for the opportunities around them and jump on them. Some of them might fall flat, but some might bring you closer to your goals.
It’s Never Too Late
If you’ve been watching your life pass you by while your dreams sit on the back burner, don’t worry. It’s never too late.
If you need some help—some encouragement, some tools, some resources—come visit us. We’d love to see what you end up creating.
And if you need a little extra boost, visit Killer Creators.