You Can Be A World Famous Artist (or whatever else you want to be)

By Nicole Tinkham

be-what-you-want

I don’t think I’m alone when I confess that it took me a really long time to figure out what it was I wanted to do with my life. In fact, I’m still trying to figure it out. When we’re young, we’re always asked “What do you want to be when you grow up?” and any answer you give is perfectly acceptable. You’re encouraged to dream big. But when reality sets in and you actually have to make this decision for real, you don’t get the same reaction when you respond with “To be a world famous artist traveling the world”. It’s not the norm and something that’s different scares most people. Maybe it’s the people around you trying to talk you out of doing something huge like that or maybe it’s you, not even allowing yourself to dream big simply because it sounds too crazy.

It’s simple to have the mindset of just surviving day by day, looking forward to the weekends when you get a short break and then getting right back into this routine of yours. By doing this you aren’t seeing the big picture though. You’re not really thinking about what this life has to offer or how you could make a huge difference in the world. You’re just putting your head down and trying to get by. Is that any way to live though? If you think about all the things you could possibly be doing right now, is doing this what you would choose if you didn’t have to worry about anything else? Listen, we all know life is way too short to not enjoy what we do but why aren’t most of us making any changes?

The big thing that comes into play here is fear. It’s the fear of failure, the fear of what others might say, the fear that you might actually succeed, and many more. But what if when you were born you were meant to do something very specific? Something that no one else could do quite like you. Something that you were destined to do and succeed in? It’s something you feel deep down in your gut but never considered (or are too afraid to) act on. You are robbing the world of your special skills by not stepping out to do it! You have the power to help so many people and actually enjoy and be happy in your life and you’re most likely doing nothing about it. You’re choosing to do things you don’t fully enjoy. Doesn’t that sound kind of silly?

If you never make the leap, you will never know what could have been in store for you. Even when all odds are against you, if you were meant to do a particular thing in your life it will somehow work out. You must have faith and believe in yourself. Think about it this way; if you were to wrap up life right now, would you be happy with what you left the world with? Would you be happy with your accomplishments? If not, you need to make a change. You need to feel proud of the life you have lived. And if you want people to remember you when you’re gone, you must make an impact in some way on someone. The best way to do that is to follow that gut feeling and just go after what feels right in your heart.

If you do one thing today, make this be it. This one way of thinking will open your eyes to the possibilities. It will have you believing in yourself like you never have before. Whatever it is you want to do in your life whether it be to become a famous artist, an actress, a business owner, a singer, or whatever is in your heart, ask yourself if anyone else is or has already done this thing. Doesn’t have to be someone you know personally. Just think about whether it has been done before. Chances are it has and you know what that means? It means that you can do it too. It is not impossible. If someone else can do it, then why not you? Those people out there doing the things you want to do are no different than you. They don’t have anything special that you don’t have. They just went after what they wanted and they got there. Just like you can and will do.

You are never too old, the timing is never too late, and you are never too inexperienced to make things happen in your life.  What you need to do is consider the possibilities, set a goal for yourself, take action, become focused, and never give up. If it’s in your heart, keep going even through the difficult times. You will get there regardless of age or where you’re at in life right now. You CAN be that world famous artist or whatever else it is you want to be.

How To Stop Being Your Own Worst Critic Once And For All

By Nicole Tinkham

critic

We asked what your biggest struggle as an artist was and it was surprising how much you all agreed on what the top struggles were, one of them being your own worst critic. You don’t have to be an artist for this one though, so many of us get in our own way when trying to accomplish something big in our lives. The sad thing is, just when everything is going well for us it feels unreal and then that inner critic comes in and brings us back down from our happiness high. It all starts with one simple mistake, something every single one of us does. We say some negative words to ourselves (or someone we’re close to says them to us) and those words stick in our minds and we replay them over and over. The more down we feel, the more those words echo in our heads. You could feel stuck, depressed and unworthy of anything great. All of these are so far from the truth though. What you need to do is rid these thoughts from your head and realize just how amazing you are. Read on for how to stop being your own worst critic once and for all.

Stop what you’re doing!

Next time you find yourself saying “idiot” or “dummy” or anything else negative toward yourself, stop immediately. Is this really you? Of course not! It’s just that old playback from a past mistake that keeps repeating back to you. Start talking back to this little voice in your head. Counter the negative with some positive words (they always win the battle).

Here’s what I do: Write down any negative thoughts about yourself that are running through your mind. Cross it out and switch that phrase to something positive. For example, your first thoughts may be “My paintings are terrible and I will never sell any of them”. To flip it, say “My paintings are unique and there are so many people looking for exactly what I have to offer”. Now read that new positive phrase over and over until it replaces that negative voice in your head.

Another thing to do: Write yourself love notes on all your positive qualities. Keep reading those to yourself every single day until your mindset starts to shift and you believe in your good qualities over the bad.

Spend time with the right people

When improving your self-image, it goes beyond the thoughts in your head and in to the people around you and what they’re saying to you. There’s a chance that these negative words that pop up actually come from other people. Maybe it’s something you were told as a kid. Or maybe it’s more recent and there are people in your life who are constantly putting you down. Regardless of the case, that kind of thing sticks with you. Good news is, the opposite is also true. So spending more time with people who compliment your good qualities will lift you up and put those good words in your mind instead.

Here’s what I’ve done: I formed a new group of people who encourage me rather than put me down. I had to take a break with some of the people in my life (even family) so I could focus on my own goals and move forward. From experience, it really is incredible what can happen when you start being selective with who you spend your time with.

Another thing to keep in mind: Compliment and lift others up as well. It works both ways!

Value yourself

When you’re constantly putting yourself down and being too hard on yourself, you’re not being very nice to you which only promotes more negative self talk. But when you start loving and respecting yourself, you totally change your perspective of who you are. You see yourself in a new light. You realize how incredible you really are.

What you should do: Spoil yourself! It doesn’t have to be anything big and expensive, just do at least one thing every day that makes you happy. Enjoy those little moments that make you smile and remind yourself to take time out of your busy day to do them. Every morning I jot down a few things that I know will put me in a good mood. Sometimes it’s doing my hair differently or starting the day by listening to my favorite song. Those little things don’t seem like much but over time they add up and make a huge impact on how you feel about yourself. Remember, you deserve the best.

Being your own worst critic can hold you back from accomplishing so many things. With that sort of limiting belief, you won’t even allow yourself to dream big because you figure “what’s the point?” Now you’re even unhappier because you’re not where you want to be in life and you don’t think you’re good enough for anything better. These little negative words can quickly turn into a downward spiral. When they creep in, the first thing you need to do is stop that train of thought in its tracks and remind yourself of your amazing qualities. You can start doing these things right away. Give it time and you’ll begin seeing the shift.

Tell us, what other things are you struggling with as an artist? Leave a comment below!

Write Your Own Story – 4 Steps To Discovering Who You Really Are

By Nicole Tinkham

your-story

When it comes to knowing yourself, it makes perfect sense to say that you’re the one who knows you best. We’d be willing to bet however, that you don’t know yourself as well as you think you do. When we’re born we are open to so many different possibilities in life, even down to the language we speak. But as we grow, our surroundings shape who we are. We pick up on the language and activities around us and that’s who we become. We’re told what to do and what not to do. We tend to follow along with society and what everyone else is doing. While knowing who you are sounds simple enough, can you see why discovering the real you can be a bit challenging? Instead of making up your own story, we’ll explain how you can write your true story and really figure out the person who you are.

Why is it important to write your story?

Do you ever feel lost and wonder how you ended up on this particular path? Maybe you have little excitement in what you’re currently doing or maybe you just feel like you were born to do more. To discover your calling, you must first dig deeper and discover yourself. Once you figure that out, everything else will start falling into place. This also allows you to put your time and energy into the right things that will shape who you are and who you want to become. You’ll find that you’re more confident being the unique person you are and you’ll start challenging yourself more, striving for bigger and better things in life.

FIRST: Spend time with yourself

This doesn’t mean stay home and watch TV all day. When we say to spend time with you, we mean get yourself in the zone in a nice quiet area with no distractions. Be still, clear your mind of any stresses, and just be alone. For some people this can be quite uncomfortable but being alone with your thoughts can reveal information about yourself that you normally wouldn’t notice. Embrace the silence and become one with yourself. You can do this step often just to check in with where you’re at. Every once in awhile do a longer session and more frequently you can do shorter sessions, or whatever you feel is needed.

SECOND: Get honest with yourself

Still alone in a quiet area, grab a journal and start jotting down notes on who you are. This shouldn’t be who you want to be, someone else who you admire, or who you’re striving to become. Make a list of every single unique thing about you including both the good and the bad. Sometimes it can be difficult to open up about the things you aren’t proud of but remember that this list is for your eyes only. Plus you must be aware of these areas so you can work on them.

THIRD: Consider how you make people feel

This next step is crucial when making self improvements. How you make others feel says way more about you than your success and money. People don’t remember those things but they will always remember how they felt around you. Seriously consider how you currently make people feel and then think about how you’d like to make them feel.

FOURTH: Determine what you have to offer

The final step will take some time and could change as you go through different seasons of life. You may not have an answer right away but what we can tell you is that you were born with a special gift to share with the world. Even if you see a ton of other people doing the same thing you are, creating and selling art online for example, there’s a certain unique quality that only you have. To discover this, write down a list of everything you’re good at whether it’s a certain art technique or baking killer chocolate chip cookies. What do people most often compliment you on? What do they ask your advice on? What are some things you absolutely love doing? Keep asking yourself these questions and with time, you’ll discover what you were meant to do and how to give that unique thing to the world.

One last piece of advice, actually write these things down! Literally write out your story. Take your brainstorm notes and put them all together. Also keep in mind that your story can and will change. As we go through different life events who we are and what we have to offer also changes. So whether you’re trying to figure out your next career move or just trying to be a better version of yourself, walk through these 4 steps to writing your own story and discovering who you really are.

Calm Down Your Mind And Stop Worrying – Here’s How!

By Nicole Tinkham

untitled-1

Do you overthink every single little thing to the point where you can’t get anything accomplished? Fear can stop you dead in your tracks from doing just about anything in your life. If you have some big goals for the New Year, listen up! You need to let go of the past and stop worrying about the future. Live in this moment right here right now TODAY. Easier said than done, right? Don’t worry; we put together this guideline to help calm down your mind and stop worrying once and for all. Read on for how to accept the things you cannot change, be fearless of the future, get rid of your limiting beliefs, and enjoy the things you already have.

Accept the things you cannot change

Let’s face it. If something has happened in the past, there’s no going back to change it now. It’s impossible. That leaves you with two options. You can either make improvements and better the situation or just let it go. Here’s what you need to know. Sometimes the best thing to do is to just let it go. For instance, when someone else is involved you will not and cannot change that other person. Don’t even try.  When it comes to you personally though, there’s always a chance to change and grow as a person. It may not fix the past but it’s a way to move forward without dwelling on past situations.

Note: Accepting the past will not just magically happen overnight. Forgiving and moving on will take time and the best thing you can do is take baby steps, moving forward a little bit each day.

Be fearless of the future

Fear is the number one thing that holds people back from going after their goals. People not only fear failure but they also fear rejection and ridicule from others. When it comes to failure think of it this way; if you aren’t taking the chance, you’re always going to be where you’re at right now. Is that what you really want? To create a better life for yourself, you will have to make a change. If you fail, you have the opportunity to start over and try something different.

When it comes to worrying about what other people think, you have to remember to think of yourself first. What do you feel in your heart is right? What were you born to do? What makes you happiest? You know yourself better than anyone else. Sometimes loved ones are only looking out for you and they don’t want to see you make a wrong decision. Take what they have to say seriously but remember that at the end of the day it’s your decision.

Get rid of your limiting belief

So many people worry about money, time, and careers. We would say those are the big three although you may have others to add to the list. One reason why you could be stressing out in these areas could be because of your limiting belief. You don’t think you’re worth more money. You seem to never have time and always have a ton of things to get done. You don’t have the skills to get a better job that you enjoy. With this mindset, you really won’t get far.

You need to look within yourself. What kind of person are you really? What incredible qualities do you possess? What are you good at? Know that there’s always room for improvement but you are already amazing just the way you are. You were born to do great things now it’s time to do them!

As with everything mentioned in this blog, your belief in yourself will take time. Lift yourself up by reading something inspirational every day, dream about your future life (and make a plan to turn it into your reality), and repeat positive affirmations to yourself daily. The more you believe in yourself the more you will achieve!

**You are good enough!**

Cherish what your life already has to offer

Stop spending your time worrying about cleaning your house, running errands, ironing your laundry, and just being this perfect person. Start paying attention to the things in your life that really matter, like your friends and family. Sometimes it feels like everything is going wrong so stop yourself for a moment and seriously think about this. Think of all the wonderful things you do have in your life and think of others who don’t have those things. You are so incredibly blessed, it’s time you start appreciating it. Think about this; would you rather be remembered by the impeccable home you’ve kept up with or the way you made others feel? Consider what your real priorities are and adjust the way you’re living your life.

When you are faced with an issue…

Ask yourself what the absolute worst thing that could happen is.

Now make a plan in case that was to actually happen. Having a plan written down for the worst case scenario will ease your mind.

Chances are you’ll realize that even the worst thing isn’t the end of the world and you’ll feel better about the situation.

Stress, worry and anxiety are all part of life but the way you handle them says a lot about who you are. These are all difficult things to overcome but once you can let go and fully enjoy what life has to offer, the little things won’t even bother you anymore. Remember to accept the things you cannot change, never fear what the future brings, realize that you are good enough, and be grateful for all the wonderful things you already have. If you focus on these four things the stress will start to melt away.

Why Dreaming Big Is Getting You Nowhere And What You Need To Start Doing For Success

By Nicole Tinkham

success

You’ll hear us say it all the time and it’s definitely something we believe in and stick by. It’s important to love this life of yours, to do the things that make you happy, and to dream big. You may have already started dreaming big by writing some goals down, creating a vision board, and visualizing your future. That’s great if you have and something we still encourage you to do. But what happens when you’re doing all this dreaming and nothing ever happens? If you’re feeling a little defeated and frustrated, this blog is for you. We’ll explain why dreaming big is getting you nowhere and what you need to start doing for success.

Dreaming big is the first piece of the puzzle. It’s figuring out what you really want in life and it’s certainly a crucial step. But if you stop at your dreams without taking action, you will never move forward. How do you expect these dreams to actually happen? Think they’re just going to fall into your lap? We can tell you from experience that’s not how this works. What you can start doing though is thinking big.

For example, it’s so easy to get lost in the excitement of a new career opportunity. You’re creating this new life for yourself and you have a list of things you’re dreaming of accomplishing. But the question is, are you taking those dreams and strategically planning what exactly will happen in your future? When you don’t have a plan one of two things typically happens. Either you get burnt out on this big dream or you fall behind trying to adapt to these new changes in your life.

What you need to do is get out of your head and get “all in” on the things you want to accomplish. You must give it your all. You must have a plan and take action. You must get focused. You may even have to make sacrifices like TV time, sleep, and extra vacations at least until you get things rolling. If you’re not 100% in it, it’s still all just a dream. You need to switch from dreaming big to thinking (and doing) big!

There’s no way of predicting the future but it doesn’t hurt to have a game plan either way. Know exactly what your next step is if you succeed and what your next step is if you fail. Sure, there will always be little surprises that come up along the way but you can handle them confidently when you have a strong plan. Don’t just wait around to see what happens. Be prepared.

So while dreaming big paints the picture of how your life could look, it’s also important to think big. Take action on those dreams, follow through with them, and plan for anything the future may bring (good or bad). It may be impossible to predict exactly what could happen in the future but think through every possible situation you can imagine and plan for it. If you’re a dreamer but feel stuck, start doing these things to finally see success in your life.

5 Planner Hacks That Will Change Your Life

By Nicole Tinkham

planner.jpg

It’s the beginning of a new year and if you’re gearing up to make the most of it, you probably purchased a brand new planner and you’re ready to go. Maybe planning and staying organized last year didn’t work out so well or maybe you’re just totally new to this. In either case, we understand the struggle of organization. It can be completely overwhelming looking at a book full of tasks that need to be done. Or maybe you forget to open up your planner altogether which makes having one pretty pointless. Don’t worry; we have 5 planner hacks that will change your life and help keep you organized throughout the whole year.

1.    Don’t include everything

There’s two types of people in the world; those who don’t (or rarely) write important things down and those who write every single little thing down. They key is to find that sweet spot. You have to write some things down but jotting down too much just becomes overwhelming. If there’s something you do on a daily basis without much thought, it doesn’t need to go in your planner. For example, you’ll want to have your dentist appointments marked down in your planner but it’s not necessary to schedule time to brush your teeth every day. You should hopefully be in the habit of doing that daily already.

2.    Plan to plan

We know you want to use your planner and stay organized but the problem normally lies in something as simple as forgetting to sit down and plan. You just need to get in the habit of doing so consistently. Schedule time to sit down and plan for the day, week, and month. It may only take you 15 minutes but it won’t get done unless you plan on getting it done. So how exactly do you plan to plan? We recommend setting an alarm to go off on your phone as a reminder. You should also schedule things into your planner at the same time every day. So for example, you can plan your day at 9:00AM daily, plan for your week every Sunday at 9:00AM and schedule for the month on the 1st of every month at 9:00AM. The more consistent your timing is, the easier it is to form the habit of getting it done.

3.    Use only one planner

If you think having one planner is difficult to keep up with, you’ll drive yourself bonkers with multiple books. Sometimes it may seem like a good idea to separate your home life from your career to-dos but we advise against that. You’ll find yourself flipping back and forth between the two planners which will only make the process more confusing. Plus this is exactly why colorful highlighters, pens and washi tape were invented. Instead of using a whole different book, color-code your tasks to keep them separate but all in the same spot.

4.    Personalize it

Your planner is a very personal thing and should be treated as so. It’s important to choose a planner that will suit your needs. For example, if you do a lot of traveling, a compact planner may be perfect so you can easily take it everywhere with you. But if you take a lot of notes, a larger planner may be ideal for you so you have enough room to write. Get a planner that’s your own personal style. Fall in love with it so you can love using it. Also consider a bullet journal for total customization.

5.    Physically check things off your list

Checking a task (any task, big or small) is so incredibly satisfying. It’s so satisfying that it actually pumps you up for the next task on your list. That being said, actually check off or cross out completed tasks. Oh and don’t stress over the tasks that don’t get completed. You can just move these over to a later date or make a separate list of these tasks to be completed whenever you have the extra time. Remember that you can only do your best so don’t beat yourself up over what doesn’t get done.

Make this year the year you don’t give up all hope on your planner! We know it’s not easy following a planner consistently. It takes some time to plan everything out and it’s so easy to forget to open it up and get planning. But once you’re on a roll with doing it, it’ll become much easier and planning ahead makes everything else easier too. You don’t have to be a super organized person to make a planner work for you. Just keep it simple, be consistent and don’t put too much in it.

Have you had success with your planner? Let us know your top tips in the comments below!

25 Art Careers You Need To Consider

art-careers.jpg
By Nicole Tinkham

If the reason you haven’t turned your passion for art into a career yet is because you don’t think you could make it as an artist, think again! You don’t have to do the scary task of quitting your day job to become your own boss as an artist. You can take a different route and still use your creative skills in a job that leaves you feeling fulfilled and happy. The following list of 25 art careers take a different spin on the typical painter or other art profession you have in mind. Some of these are out of the box but you may be surprised how well they align with your interests and skills. For example, you may have never thought twice about interior design but if you have an eye for color and placement it could be just the career for you. If you want to make art a full time part of your life, read on for 25 brilliant ideas that you need to consider.

1.    Writer – Gets creative with words in stories, poems, screenplays, and more
2.    Interior Designer – Beautifies indoor spaces
3.    Art Teacher – Teaches skills in universities or art workshops
4.    Art Appraiser – Determines the value of artwork
5.    Art Gallery Manager – Ensures that those who come into the gallery are looked after and oversee installations and exhibits
6.    Caricature Artist – Cartooning for parties and events
7.    Fashion Designer – Designs beautiful clothing
8.    Cake Decorator – Creates edible works of art
9.    Actor/singer – Let your talents shine!
10.    Set Designer – Prepares the stage for theater productions
11.    Museum Curator – Organizes exhibits at museums
12.    Tattoo Artist – Applies artwork in the form of a tattoo
13.    Lighting Designer – Creates lighting effects for production
14.    Restoration Artist – Brings back the original look of an old piece of artwork
15.    Landscape Artist – Designs the layout of plants in outdoor spaces
16.    Architect – The art and science behind designing buildings
17.    Product Designer – Designs the look of different products
18.    Medical Illustrator – Illustrations for medical journals and textbooks
19.    Muralist – Creates large scale paintings on buildings
20.    Screen Printing – Creates designs on clothing using a screen and ink or paint
21.    Textile Design – Designs the look of different fabrics
22.    Florist – Arranges flowers and plants
23.    Musician – Creates art for the ears
24.    Glass Blower – Shapes blobs of molten glass into vessels and shapes
25.    Woodworking – Creates artwork and functional pieces out of wood

Of course, doing your own thing as an artist and working for yourself is the perfect alternative to working for someone else. We love the idea and if it’s in your heart, we say go for it! But this list of 25 art careers may be the ideal stepping stone if you aren’t quite ready to be your own boss. Or it may help you discover exactly what you want to do. Whatever the case may be, the important thing is that you’re happy. Look over this list, consider some different options, then do your research and see if these would be a good fit for you.

Tell us, which of these 25 art careers stands out to you? Have something to add to the list? Just let us know in the comments!