Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Art Focus: Get out of your own way!

I read a quote recently that said "Great things don't come from comfort zones"

The reality of running your own business is that you can very easily get comfortable and stuck in a routine that isn't challenging you. Being your own boss has it's benefits but you defintely have to be on top of your game! 

Enthusiasm for your business is a must but that's easy to say and harder to actually maintain. So here are a few things i've found helpful when i've mentally hit a brick wall. These can apply to running a business, working from home, running a blog, youtube channel etc. 

1. Talk to others about your business - and be excited!

This is probably the hardest step, even still, for me. I'm naturally a very introverted person and find it hard to express myself in day to day life never mind talking about my business. But i've learnt that talking about what you're up to not only keeps you excited about your work but also you get so much inspiration from throwing ideas around with friends.

2. Have a few projects lined up. 

Another must for me is knowing where my business is going. Every 6 months or so i'll re-assess and plan out a few major projects i want to complete in the next few months. This way, you don't get lost in the day to day routine, rather you're working towards bigger goals or targets that give you needed motivation. 

3. Embrace social media!

If you haven't already... really??? Do it! There's nothing more awesome than instant feedback. Building a community of followers takes time, so be patient. But if people are interested in the subject area of your work they'll stick around and even better, give you much valued advice!
A warning with this though, don't listen to just one voice. What are the community as a whole telling you? Don't let one negative comment put you off the project you've always wanted to work on. 

4. Have a work environment that suits YOUR needs. 

For me, that means space, space to lay everything out. It also means letting things get a bit messy while I'm in the middle of projects - so my big desk suits my work style!
Try a few different set ups and figure out where you are most productive. 

5. Do your best to have regular work hours and stick to them. Don't do too much "over time".

Working from home comes with the added challenge of learning to leave it alone. Sometimes i'm tempted to do a bit of work in the evening, despite already working during the day. But i've learnt it's best to leave it. Be strict with 
yourself and enjoy the recreation time! Also, having scheduled work hours means i'm more productive in that time now. Rather than thinking "Ah, i can get around to that later" i'm more strict with myself meaning i usually get more done compared with what i used to. 

6. Make it fun!

Working from home can be a bit monotonous, so change it up where you can. Whether it's new projects, sitting out in the sun to do a bit of paperwork, regularly changing up your work hours, or being creative with your workspace, be sure to diversify your work and keep it fun!

I hope some of these tips help you. I work as a self employed artist and illustrator, if you'd like to see my work you check it here:

Have a great day!
Much Love, Beth xxx