I love the idea of resolutions--whether or not they are actually achieved in a year. Setting goals gives us something to aim for--a way to keep moving forward; to better ourselves in some way. Resolutions are wonderful because they wake us up, and give us renewed motivation. Although the majority of us fall off track over time, the fact that we BEGIN says something. Now, the tricky part is staying motivated for an entire year--making your resolution a HABIT, so that you will be able to more easily continue it in the years to come.
The following were my resolutions for 2014:
1. BIG GOAL: To begin my official art business.
2. SMALLER GOAL: To start my own website
3. SMALLER GOAL: To open an etsy shop.
Here's how I accomplished my resolutions:
Knowing that those goals felt overwhelming to me at the time, I decided that I would need to break them down into manageable goals. I did not actually write these goals out (though that would've been a good idea!) Instead, I decided to focus on one small task at a time, and work on it until it became habit...then move onto another task. As long as these tasks moved me towards achieving my big goals, I felt successful.
So, to start with, I knew that I needed to figure out the paperwork/tax side of business. I met with members of the Small Business Administration; took an Art & Marketing class over lunch breaks; attended an Art Business conference; met with a sales tax advisor; got a sales tax license, etc. At the same time, I began reading books for art business, accounting for artists, craft business, small business, entrepreneurs, etc. After I began to feel comfortable with the paperwork, I began working on my own website, monthly eNewsletter, blog, and continued posting regularly on my artist facebook page. In order to stay motivated to create art, while simultaneously working on the business side of my studio, I called and set up exhibition dates with coffee shops, restaurants, and other businesses willing to show my work for a month or two. After a full year of work, I established the following new habits:
1. Post on the blog every Saturday (except when there is no access to the internet..).
2. Check for new venues/exhibition opportunities with tea on Saturday morning.
3. Work on studio art every night after work; Finish a new painting every 1-2 weeks.
4. Send out monthly newsletter on the 15th of every month.
So, as I look towards another year of possibilities, I have set some new goals for myself...goals that, I hope, will feed into new HABITS and build on old ones. Here are a few of my resolutions for the coming year:
1. BIG GOAL: Organize my studio space and business.
2. SMALLER GOAL: Exhibit art in a new state.
3. SMALLER GOAL: Host an art opening for one of my exhibits.
So, as you begin tackling your resolutions for the coming year, I would urge you to break them into mini goals--with the overarching goal being to establish new HABITS for a better you! :)