If I want to invent a new future, one where I can do more by doing less, where I can make smart choices that allow me to have more impact in the world, building in margin is the only way to get there.
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Get comfortable with the “know-like-trust” factor Don’t talk to strangers. Don’t accept a lollipop. Definitely don’t get in the car. You learned these rules when you were five, and, if you’re like most people, you probably still basically follow them. Even if you’ll talk to strangers, it makes you nervous. What if you get stuck with
When you are trying to reach your life goals, getting the work done is not the key problem. The problem is, WHICH work?
Building a healthy creative practice is SELF CARE. It’s the best kind of self care, the kind that builds you up from the inside.
I’m a cartoonist and a writer. I do this work because I have something I want to communicate. Communicating that (and continuing to produce it) requires selling it, and so selling it is part of the job. Shakespeare had to sell theater tickets. DaVinci had to sell paintings. Dickens had to sell magazines. Being in the business of selling my work does not suddenly make me a “business person.” It makes me an artist.
“I was getting closer to my creative life all year. I just didn’t realize it, because it wasn’t a step-by-step “extreme makeover” version where five weeks later I’m like, Now I’m a published author. Or, Now I’m super-successful. Or, Now I can quit my day job. But all these other things happened.
And now it’s been, 14 weeks? And I mean, I’m rolling.”
Jennifer Shiman came back to her career in animation determined to have a better relationship with her work. “This is an opportunity to really create not only a sustainable way to earn a living, but a sustainable work process, which is necessary for my health.”
So how does one go from a slow-burn collaborative podcast to putting out a full, cohesive season of a narrative podcast in one year? With a whole lot of extremely focused action, and a laser focus on one goal.
A few weeks ago, I assigned my art students a fun project, a “forgery” of an artist they admire and want to learn from. One student picked Michelangelo. (I talked her down from trying a fresco—in two weeks—to imitating his red chalk studies.) She copied his work in her sketchbook every day. She went to