I don’t know why, but especially those of us into the DIY mindset, often feel as if we MUST do it all ourselves. This is the case in many areas of our lives, whether it’s learning something new or baking that new recipe. Doing it from scratch or doing it all by your lonesome self is often a premise we set for ourselves. We often refuse help even when it is offered, pushing away others and totally getting lost in our own little bubble of a world. Does the lonesome journey somehow make your efforts more worthy of results? Or would you only be proud of your successes if you built them from the ground up with you bare hands? I understand the romanticism in those scenarios and we are often serenaded by other peoples’ stories of that effect. Someone who created a great thing from nothing and how it became a huge success, blah blah. It’s all fine and dandy, but I’ve come to learn it’s a bit of a fantasy.

Of course, we often accomplish things from start to finish without issue. We’ve built upon what we’ve learned from others – our influences and past learnings. We stand on the shoulder of giants, right? We’ve all had many teachers who have contributed to our life skills and there are books to refer to…and now the Internet! Sure, one could spontaneously come up with bright and creative ideas seemingly without “help” – a big EUREKA! But I think it’s a culmination of many influences and learnings from beforehand. Everything we do is a big mix of everything we have experienced…and every mix is unique, so that’s why we can create unique and interesting stuff…regardless of if we’ve learned from the same people or sources. Pretty cool, if you think about that!

So I’ve learned to stop feeling like I need to do things from scratch and more importantly that I need to figure it all out myself. Sometimes we need help. Yes, we need education, support…a helping hand! I still feel hesitant at times to ask for help or seek it out…somehow we feel ashamed. But those feelings are just not warranted. I just need to learn something new or a bit of a push in the right direction…what is so shameful about that? Ultimately, we are seeking something positive. I think that’s a good thing, darn it! Thus far in my creative business 101 journey, I’ve been able to build up a plan, based on my dreams with full confidence. I moved on to build a website with my own skills, writing as best I can for my marketing materials and making good progress. Now I’ve hit a big bump in the road…this marketing stuff is just throwing me for a loop. I know certain things, but just can’t get it all into a plan of action. It’s new to me and honestly, I’m a bit scared and just been flailing around lately.

I’ve wallowed a bit, tried to initiate some things here and there…like getting linked up with ArtsyShark “Links to Art We Love” page… but I’m seriously blocked and just spending my time reading books, doodling and painting away…as you can see from the photos. Good things to do creatively, but not so good if you are trying to build a business. I know I need to get myself out there and market my work, direct things towards my goals. It’s fine and dandy to be creatively fulfilled, but we’ve all got to eat and pay the bills, too. I sort of know the things I should be doing, but reluctant and not sure how to approach it all.

Thursday should be my marketing effort day, yet I was painting all morning and forgot about what I was going to do…echk. I started surfing the Internet again and finally decided to invest in my education and creative business by purchasing I’d Rather Be in the Studio! The Artist’s No-Excuse Guide to Self-Promotion by Alyson Stanfield. It’s been on my list for a while, as the new edition just came out in 2011, but I’m always hesitant to spend more money on things when I’m not exactly making the money. It can be difficult to sort out what is really worth it and I’ve often purchased things and regretted…not because of the products themselves, but because I was snatching at random things. In this case, it is not even a big investment and I got the ebook, so it’s instant and I can start diving in right away. However, more than the monetary value, it’s about making a commitment to yourself to tackling the issue – self-promotion in this case – and getting the help I need. So, I don’t have to know how to do it myself, by myself…I’m turning to resources that I can reach out to…we’ll see what happens.

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