As I say goodbye to 2018, I say goodbye to many successes and many struggles. As I look toward 2019, I feel like everything I intend to work on supports one main goal in my life. And that is to grow my art business. To take what I have learned, created and planted in the past few years, nurture it, and shine fearlessly as the person I want to be…the person I am at my core.
When setting goals, I often use the SMART system. A goal must be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant or resonate, and timely. Having a large goal by year’s end can be daunting and overwhelming. A year is a long time to accomplish a task, BUT by focusing on the total number, we are easily intimidated and may give up before we get started. That is the downfall of traditional resolution making…we dream so big we buckle under the pressure early on and give up entirely. And so, I am using the SMART goal setting template to break my big intention down into bite-sized pieces. Within my goal setting I have decided that rather than setting a resolution this year, I am setting an intention. A desire to act a certain way. The determination to accomplish something, on a regular basis.
My New Year’s intention is to shine fearlessly, while continuing to discover me at my core and live my truest self, following my life’s path, enjoying the journey and trusting the process. I will no longer live in fear of being rejected. I hope to get in touch more often with my inner child, while maintaining a balance of responsible adulting…both of which I am currently lacking in 2018. I know, you are probably thinking “what is she talking about? This isn’t a proper goal. How will she even know if she succeeds or not?” Let me tell you…
A little back story…in March of 2018, I took a big step and registered my business, LizzieLou Mixed Media (www.embraceyourinspiration.com). And in trying to establish myself and look professional, I spent a lot of money. A lot of money that I still currently owe. And a lot of money that I didn’t make back at markets or expos. Now, I will not say that I ran a loss this year, because I gained SO MUCH in knowledge and networking and learning experiences. But financially, things are looking pretty rough.
A lot of my goals this year are business related. Specifically, with the desire to make money and pay off my debt, as well as continue to support my passion. My financial goal is to need to apply for HST by the end of the year. As a small business, HST isn’t required until a certain income is achieved. I understand, many people want to avoid the complication of paying and charging taxes. However, I will proudly do a happy dance on Facebook Live if I make enough this year to require me to apply for and charge HST. Why? Because I feel it legitimizes my business. And it reaches a huge financial goal, allowing me to lean on my art more than I am currently. But this still sounds like a huge task, so I have broken it down into bite-sized pieces.
I took the total amount I’d like to make for the year, and divided it by 12 months. Then I took it further and divided by 4 weeks, and again by 7 days. And then I took the profits from each type of painting that I create, and figured out how many per day I need to be selling, and therefore producing. This number of paintings I intend to slowly incorporate into my daily practice, one at a time over the course of the first 3 months of the year. By painting daily, I will be nourishing my creative self.
What will I do with all of these paintings? Aside from my online shopify store, I have some of my art in a brick and mortar shop now, King St. Collective (https://www.facebook.com/kingstcollective) here in Hamilton. And just the other day found out my 6×6 whimsical flowers are selling!!! My series, Renewal, is going into another shop, Mystic Mojo (https://www.facebook.com/MysticMojoCanada), in the new year. This is the shop I donated a print to for a food drive silent auction. I am ecstatic! I asked, and they said yes! In order to keep stock in the shops I need to be creating these mini paintings daily. In fact, I need to sell approximately 4 minis per day to reach my monthly goal income from art. Which means, I need to be creating AT LEAST 4 minis per day. And really, I also need to be creating inventory for my online shop and for Spring and Summer markets and expos as well.
So lots of painting needs to be done. I need to make it a daily habit or ritual. Which is fantastic, because I have been trying to allow myself to paint daily for a long time, and I haven’t achieved that yet due to guilt and shame…believing I am not deserving of “play” time. When in reality, it is this play that brings me closest to my inner child, and my truest self. I NEED to create, just like I need to breathe and drink water. And when I don’t, it’s like a person with caffeine withdrawal…irritable and unfocused. By incorporating painting into my daily life, I am working towards two of my big goals…selling paintings, and creating positive habits and rituals to feed my body, mind and soul. It’s a win-win!
In order to create freely, I need to free my head of busy thought. And so, another intention of mine is to incorporate meditation, hypnosis and journaling into my daily routine as well. This will support my physical and emotional health, and get me “out of my head” so that I can paint more productively daily.
In order to bring my art to more people, to need to apply for HST, I need to expand my reach. I need to network and meet people face to face. I need to gain more followers on Facebook and Instagram. Increasing my platform will also serve two very important purposes for me. It will, hopefully, allow me to bring in more sales, but more importantly, it will allow my story to be seen and heard by more people, inevitably helping people to relate and know that they are not alone in their emotions. I will be forever grateful to the people whose stories inspired me to take action, and I hope to pay it forward and be that spark for others, through my paintings.
It’s a spiral…by working on my own self care, I am enabling myself to create more paintings, which I can sell to support my business and my hobby, allowing me to paint even more! And in creating more often, I have more opportunities to relate to people and hopefully inspire them. I love this New Year’s intention to focus on living as my authentic self. I will no longer hide behind who I think I am supposed to be. I will shine fearlessly in everything that I do, and be proud of who I am, in every moment…ME.
Written by: Liz Chamberlain; Lizzielou Mixed Media