About four years ago, my husband came home and showed me something that would change the way I thought of myself. He was in a personal development and leadership class; the professor talked about the role of the “creator.” He showed me the summary they had discussed:
I still keep this paper on our refrigerator, because it reminds me of a critical challenge that every artrepreneur, every person, is faced with: becoming a creator.
Taking on the role of the creator is all about accepting an internal locus of control: the idea that you have more control over your outcomes than do the circumstances you are presented with. When you lose this internal locus of control, you fall victim to your circumstances and to others–you lose control over your outcomes.
The creator role is critical because as an artrepreneur, you are solely responsible for the success of your creative business. Of course, you can attribute failures to poor market conditions, fierce competition, or something else, but remember: others are competing in similar conditions–someone will be successful… why not you? Oftentimes, its due to a victim mentality.
When you accept the role of the creator, its easier to “see life’s challenges as opportunities” and make strategic changes as a response to circumstances beyond your control. When you’re acting in the creator role, you’re using your energy to continue building your creative business, instead of acting passively. The role of the victim is for those who make excuses. The role of the creator is for those who make changes.
Stress and anxiety are major symptoms of being stuck in the victim role. When you are stuck in the victim role, you feel helpless and out of control. This causes fear of all kinds. But if you can shift to the role of the creator, you’ll be able to adjust your response to uncertainty by understanding that you have the power to affect your situation–you just have to strategically take action.
I’ll admit: this is all easier said than done, but being aware is the first step. So the next time you feel stuck or out of control, think about the creator role. Are your thoughts and actions in line with the behavior of a victim, or a creator? Accepting the role of the creator is one of the most important steps you can take in creating your very own art-based business.
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