For the Artist + Maker + Creative Entrepreneur
As a creative entrepreneur, no matter your field, it is up to you to show up and do the work. This can feel particularly challenging when your business relies on your creativity; as hobbyists we’re used to waiting for inspiration. As business owners, we don’t have that luxury.
Let me share with you some simple strategies I use to make sure I stay as efficient and productive as possible in my creative life and business. Some take discipline, but all have an impact.
Declutter your space
Clearing out and reorganizing your studio and other workspaces can really help to get you in the right mindset for your work. I fully cleared out and reorganized my studio space a couple years ago, and I can’t tell you how much more inspired and productive I feel.
If you need a kickstart, take a look at my 10 Ways to Organize Your Art Space and Maximize Your Creativity.
See your inspiration
This goes hand-in-hand with revamping your creative space… make sure you’re surrounded by the things that inspire you. This might mean family photos, or fresh flowers, or your inspiration board - it’s different for everyone. I love fresh flowers and candles are also a must for me!
The idea here is to always have something that motivates you in your line of sight.
Focus on what matters
One of the most important things you can do as an entrepreneur is to prioritize your tasks. There will always be things you might like to do, or might want to test out, but that’s not the same as having cold, hard deadlines.
When looking at you neverending to do list, ask yourself the following questions:
Will this task help me move closer towards my goals? (If no, cross it out.)
Does it have to be ME that does this? (If no, delegate it.)
Whatever you’re left with needs to go into your calendar. Assigning specific days to different tasks will help you focus on what needs to be done and when. It might feel uncomfortable to start with, especially if you’re used to going with the flow, but the smart entrepreneur lives by her calendar, leaving space for the times when inspiration hits!
I would also recommend batching your similar tasks. So you might take all your product photos in one sitting, or edit a bunch of videos in one go, or schedule a week’s worth of social media at once, or restock your creative supplies on the same day each month… you get the picture.
Put parameters on your time
When you’re in charge of your own schedule, it’s very easy to slip into bad habits. It doesn’t take much for work tasks to creep into your down time, and that is not healthy, for your mind, your relationships or your productivity.
I recommend setting work hours for yourself. Have specific start and finish times - anything outside of that is strictly for refueling yourself. I know this sounds easy, but it does take work. I am guilty of working all hours of the day, because I work at home. I have to be intentional about making space!
Again, when you’re in charge of all aspects of your creative business, it can be easy to let a lot of the actual creating slide. If you notice this happening, try signing up for a creative challenge - something that has some sort of external accountability.
I am participating in The 100 Day Project for the second time, and it allows me to focus on a small project of my choosing each day. It doesn't take a lot of time and I am really enjoying the new direction I see in my art. My theme is #100daysoflayeredpieces - take a peek HERE at the gallery.
No matter where you are in your business, chances are you could do with tightening up your productivity. I encourage you to try out each of these tips and tweak them as you go - make them work for you!
Share your tips and ideas in the comments!
Have a blessed day!