Fear. Is it holding you back moving towards your goal?
I had two powerful client calls earlier this week, with creatives who are on my 3-month program just now. It is funny how often you see the same patterns occurring in these calls with clients, despite their businesses being very different (one is a visual artist, the other a graphic designer). This Monday both calls were around fear, and how to overcome this to grow a sustainable business, and to follow your real purpose. In those blog post I will share the story of one of my clients, who is a visual artist, and what happened to her when she had a eureka moment.
This client is a talented artist in the Netherlands, who sells gorgeous ballpoint drawings of flowers, and she wants to sell more of her work. She hired me as a coach this September, to help her find a way do this. We worked on mindset, goals, niche, pricing, marketing strategies, and her different offers. For the past months I have seen her grow in confidence, get more clarity, and attract new clients and commissions. She’s had some great wins on the way.
Despite my client’s wins, there was always a niggle, or conflicting issue, that was blocking a real break-through in moving towards her long-term goal: becoming an artist and selling more of her work. She was holding onto something that was no longer serving her. But she needed time to see this.
Spending too much time on marketing the wrong product
Her marketing efforts were divided between promoting her artwork, and selling her drawing courses, which had different target audiences, and required very different tactics. The courses gave her a predictable income each month, and she felt this justified her being an artist, as ‘at least’ she had some income to show for. But she wasn’t feeling much joy doing them at all. Worst of all; a lot of time was spent each week to market a service she wasn’t 100% behind, but that took away precious time to grow the thing that was she is truly passionate about and wants to do for the rest of her life: making her own work.
She also found it hard to fill up the courses, which is not surprising when your energy is not fully in it. But still, she was holding onto them. Why? Fear of loss of income, fear of change, maybe even fear of growth. But this Monday, my client came to the call very excited, and eager to share her big news. She had made a decision. She was going to ditch the courses. She looked so happy.
As a creative business coach, I let my clients go on their own journey to make decisions and come to insights, while guiding them. Sometimes they feel very strong about a certain direction, and I have to bite my tongue to not suggest what I think they should do. This is important, because when clients realise themselves, that things are not working, and they come full circle, the effect, growth in mindset, and clarity that come with it, are much stronger and longer lasting.
It was beautiful to see my artist client come full circle and realising herself, through our conversations, worksheets, and the inner work she had done over the past weeks, that she needed to let go. I am a true believer in the universe giving us opportunities when we fully open up and say yes to life. Things just start to flow after that. They do. You make space for new ideas, people, and projects.
Delete the distractions, keep your eyes on the goal
My client told me how a part-time vacancy had opened up in one of her favourite art museums, and how this would be perfect to support her while she could continue to focus on growing as an artist, without the distraction of the courses. She would still receive the same predictable income as she did with her courses. But now without the marketing headache. Win!
When we acknowledge that we are holding onto products and services because of a feeling of scarcity and fear, we can clearly see how this creates a barrier for growth. We hold onto what we think is security, where in fact this joyless security takes up space for new, more exciting and aligned opportunities. And taking on a side-job is not a sign of failing at business, as long as you enjoy doing it and it serves you. I wrote a blog post about this recently. I actually think as creatives we feed on this kind of variety, plus creating different income streams is in fact, very healthy. As long as they still allow you to grow as an entrepreneur, working towards your long-term goals.
Fear is never a good compass
Imagine if the trees hold onto their dead autumn leaves, because they were too scared of the future. There would be no space for new buds to appear and new life to blossom. What is taking up space in your life and business right now that you feel zero joy about? What would you have time for if you let go of it? What is holding you back?
Make some space today for those new buds and fresh flowers to bloom. It will be OK.
(Psst: would you like my help as a creative business coach in tackling those mind blocks? Book a free 30-min call to check out how we can work together to make your biz blossom: https://thecreativebusiness.coach/contact/)