How Creatives Kill Their Business

I’ve been doing Business Energy work for a few years now and have had the pleasure of working with several highly creative people: artists, writers, jewelers, and bakers for example. Usually they come to me knowing that something is out of sorts with their business and they just don’t seem to be able to pinpoint what’s wrong.

Often I start with a bit of a diagnostic check as I connect with the different aspects of a business and where the connection points are between the business and the individual. Usually, I don’t find too much misalignment at this stage and I would guess that’s because creative people tend to be driven by their passion. And then comes the magic moment… the moment the business speaks up! Here’s where a theme has emerged for most of my creative clients, a key to how we kill our businesses: we call it a business!

WHAT?!

Could calling what you create “a business” actually be killing it?! Apparently – yes.

As I work more with the business and delve deeper into the possibility that one little word could do such damage, I discover that it really makes sense. You see, ‘business’, by society’s commonly accepted definition of it, comes with a lot of form, structure, definition, expectations and judgements. I can totally see how that could kill the creative juices!

Many creative people, or at least the ones I’ve worked with (and myself), when they’re doing what they do, tend to be wide open to information and inspiration from anything and anywhere. When we’re in that groove everything is possible. Often, the way we are creative naturally spills into nearly every aspect of our lives: we think beyond the known, we rarely see ‘problems’, and we are often able to tune in to other people’s thoughts, feelings and emotions. This is where the trouble begins: somewhere in there, we define the ‘one thing’ that we can leverage to generate an income and then we try to put structure around it in traditional ‘business’ practices.

Alright, so it’s no wonder the business doesn’t want to be called a business! I find it fascinating that our businesses can be so willing to do whatever is required to be a contribution to us. Just think about it – your business is okay with not being called a business just to assist you in bringing more ease and flow to your creativity. (I wonder where else we get caught up in words and definition and stick ourselves in in structure and expectations. Hmmmm)

So, how do you have a business without automatically trying to put definition and structure to it? It really can be surprisingly simple:

  1. Put your attention on what you do best – creating – at least 80% of the time. Like I mentioned before, when you’re in the groove of your creative process, you are more open to information and inspiration from all sources. I bet that creativity and inspiration could spill into the 20% zone where the actual ‘businessy’ stuff takes place – doing what is required to develop and manage your income.
  2. Be okay with your business not looking the way a business is supposed to. As a creative, you are here to bring beautiful, meaningful things into the world that the world has never seen before. Imagine if your business could be another of your creative expressions! And in doing that, I wonder if you would be able to bring forth even more beautiful, meaningful creations!

Imagine the possibilities now!

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