A few things I’ve learned in my first 2 months since expanding my business:

1)I have dove head first into my real life dream of being in the middle of absolute non-stop busy with an endless to-do list. And I have a pride in myself for making it happen that I will hopefully someday be able to articulate.

2)After years of voluntarily putting my art secondary to my family, other jobs, fear, working for my dad, helping family cope w/ my mom’s death, being the babysitter… it’s my time now.   Once you look fear in the eye and decide you’re going for it anyways… it loses it’s hold and you look back and realize how much harder it was to play small.

3) Stick to the things your best at – find people to hire, barter with or volunteer to help you with the things that drain your energy.

4) I am an artist… yet creating art is only 5-10% of my job.

5) network, network, network.  Find your tribe of people that truly get you.  Find and work with people of integrity.

6) People want to see you succeed.  But once you start having success most of those closest to you don’t want to hear about it.  When people ask how my studio is going it tends to bring out 2 very distinct reactions.  Happiness and excitement from those who are also pursuing their dreams or annoyance and surprise that things are going good from those who know they have more in them but don’t have the energy at the moment to deal with it.

7) Find your sources of information that resonate well with you and don’t just listen or read what everyone else tells you is the best resources for inspiration in your field. Some of those exact type of sites once I really listened to my body I realized just pissed me off and annoyed me. I know I’m “supposed to” really like them and admire them but I’m not feeling it.

8) I can no longer keep using food and caribou coffees to celebrate.  I used to treat myself to a caribou coffee cooler every time I had a mural or fun project I had to go somewhere to work on.  That’s a habit that I must break now that it’s 3-4 days/week. 10 extra pounds in 2 months…grrr.

9) lastly, find a mentor. Find a person or multiple people that are doing or have done things that you are wanting to achieve.  Plus once you are around people that are successful it doesn’t seem so far fetched to be running a successful business yourself.

10) Use what you listen to as learning time. I have found the best blog talk radio shows that I listen to every day at the office.  Hayhouseradio.com and Artists helping artists w/ Leslie Saeta.  Love them.