Fight or flight (pt 4 of a series)


March weekly series topic deals with “Fear” and how it relates to independent artists careers.

“Too many of us are not living our dreams, because we are living our fears”- Les Brown, speaker

Every one of us has fears of one type or another.  Tall buildings, fear of needles, or fear of a wiggly or odd- looking creatures.

 For me, spiders, and being in large groups of people are on the top of my fear list.
  Professionally, being afraid of spiders doesn’t effect me on a regular basis but being in large groups of people is part of my job, and having this be one of my phobia’s – could have been career ending as a speaker, performer, and artist. 

Most people who meet me are pretty surprised that I fear being in large groups of people, since we are usually meeting at a conference, festival, or workshop with LOTS of people around!  It is something that I have spent years working on, using the desire and passion that inspires me to create and help others create to diminish the fear that would have paralyzed me.  If I left the fear in place? Then  it would have  prevented me from touring nationally as a artist, speaking at conferences like, NAMM, ASCAP Awards, & SXSW.  Those experiences were some of the most exciting times in my career, that I would have missed if I didn't do something.
  That same tool of desire and passion are in your artistic tool-box, and you too can put fears that stop you behind you too!

WHAT TRIGGERS FEAR

Let's step back and examine what "Fear" is really all about.

“Fear” is our reaction to a distressing negative sensation by a perceived threat to our safety.  It is one of our most primal instincts of basic survival, part of our autonomic response to "fight or flight". These responses in modern times have assumed a wider range of behaviors. For example, the fight response may be manifested in angry, argumentative behavior, and the flight response may be manifested through social withdrawal, or perhaps substance abuse.

Fear almost always relates to a worsening situation channeling our energy away from the perceived threat, into directions or even old behaviors that seem safe.  
We can leave fears like spoiled children to run free in our creative house shutting doors and windows, locking inside our potential, dreams, and hopes. Or we can use our own tool box to unlock the doors and windows.

RITUALS:

There is nothing like that ol’ time Religion to inspire your feelings!
Be good and follow the “rules” and you go to HEAVEN, if you don’t, you are BAD and of course, bad people go to Hell. Despite Hell being a much warmer climate, we are conditioned that being bad and hell are undesirable destinations, and what ever spiritual guidelines your people prescribe to, will determine which behaviors you will be encouraged to follow.

The media does it’s  fair share to manipulate and exploit the message of fear every day. Simply turn on the evening news. You are flooded with images, economic failure, losing your home, and of course “Terrorists”. Who have replaced the communists as the evil dark forces we are told to fear most.

BRING THE REINFORCEMENTS:
Phobia’s are common and do not need to cause ongoing distress or disrupt your life to limit you from achieving your full potential.

You have control. You can turn off a TV or radio station to limit the influx of negative reinforcements. However, if you find you are avoiding situations or places, or that your fear is resulting in disabling anxiety, fear, or panic you may need the support a professional therapist to help you overcome your phobia.

FACING YOUR FEARS:
It’s natural to want to run and hide. You can’t undo the fight or flight response,  Remember, flight isn’t your only option, you have the opportunity to face your fears, and reclaim control.
By gradually exposing yourself to your fear will help remove the anxiety and fear.

 For example if you are afraid of heights, if you have a normal fear, you may feel anxious or have butterfly’s in your stomach and sweaty palms as you peer down from a window in a tall building. You have a Phobia, if your fear of the tall building results in you turning down a awesome job,  because it is on the 15thfloor. 

TAKING ACTION: 

Make a list of the situations that you fear the most, then arrange those items from least scary to most scary. For example if Tall buildings are your fear you may list riding in the elevator, or even pushing the button as part of a scary situation that you prioritize.

As you make your list(s) notice the feelings you experience as you write down each item, do you notice a churning stomach, sweaty palms, or increased respiration?   Remember, you are just making a list, putting words on a page, you are safe, and nothing bad is happening, That odd feeling your having is you trying a new behavior!   What is at the top of your fear list?   Let us know in the comment section below,


Tamra Engle is a independent music business strategist based in the S.F. bay area she is available to help you manage your next creative project, for private consultations to help you develop your independent business, or to produce your next demo, EP, or CD You can read more about her, and join her mailing list at www.tamraengle.com  you can email her at guitartam@gmail.com   


Credits:
Crowd photo: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3163/2827812861_d2ca20b877.jpg

The Creative Vampires (pt 3 of Fear series)


Each Month the Business Strategist deals with a different topic theme.
This Month "Fear" and  how it relates to independent artists careers is discussed in weekly segments.
      

The Creative Vampires:    (pt 3 of a series*)

“It is the most challenging work for human beings to connect within themselves in a loving, accepting, respectful way, and then to connect with other human beings in a loving, respectful, accepting way”-source


To keep growing as an artist you have to take a good look inside and clear away our own internal demons. Your creativity is like a garden, you tend to it and provide  periodic maintaince and it provides you with  long healthy relationships and a successful career doing something you love, while helping others.
Since you were a small person your parents, family, teachers and members of your spiritual community have been generous no doubt in providing you their opinions (beliefs) on how you should live your life. They weigh in about you being a artist. Some love, some hate, some become manipulative and create chaos and drama in your world.
They are Creative Vampires.

Despite everyone’s good or bad intentions their opinons and beliefs are seeds being tossed into your creative garden. Before you know it, You have a whole garden choked full of everyone’s thoughts, fears, and opinions.  You absolutely have to go through your inner garden and clear out the bad seedlings and weeds planted by you and others, so you can  make room for good things, like your vision, creativity and relationships grow!




HOW DO YOU RECOGNIZE A CREATIVE VAMPIRE?

While you are attending to your personal garden you will find that some friends or family members will question why you are bothering with the internal house cleaning?  They may even accuse you of being selfish or different.
Some are so afraid and uncomfortable with any change, they attempt to lure us back to old ways and give up good habits to make themselves feel better.  They are often frustrated artists who are blocked by their own negative beliefs.

When we follow someone else’s plan for us, it’s a recipe  to end up frustrated,stuck or lost.
Take the time to create your own plan and vision. Put yourself as artists in charge. You will have a roadmap so when you stop for gardening, maintenance  or rest, you can resume your journey where you last stopped.

Think back in your life, start with the past 5 yrs, then the 5 years before that until you’re a child.
Who have the creative vampires been in your life? 
Was it a friend, parent, teacher, spouse, or loved one?
Write down details that come to mind,  how old you are, clothing, smells,  the color of the room, how you felt, any information that annoys or upsets you about the situation.

Create a cartoon, song, or even write a note, to the creative vampire, your not going to send this to the individual, Express how you feel, defend yourself, or make a parody of them…It doesn’t have to be elaborate, or crazy. Just a simple creative vehicle to help you personally confront, the creative demon, and take it’s power away from it.

*Previous Postings discussing Artists / Fear

Acceptance and Approval:


JOIN NOW:  Artist MasterClass: Monthly topics, Syllabus with tips and exercises to help you grow your creative business, and have successful lifestyle re-alignments. 


Master Class- FEAR
Master Class- VISIBILITY


About the Author
Tamra Engle is a independent business strategist, artist, speaker and  blogger who writes as GuitarTam based in the S.F. bay area. She is available to help you manage your next project, for private consultations to help you develop your independent music business, or to  produce your next musical demo. You can read more about her,  and join her mailing list at www.tamraengle.com  you can email her at guitartam@gmail.com




References:

Quote adapted from: http://innerteacher.wordpress.com/quote-of-the-day/.  
True Blood Photo: Source: Cinegeek.com-  True Blood Alan Ball/ HBO Entertainment©
Acceptance and Approval: http://guitartam.blogspot.com/2012/03/acceptance-and-approval-dealing-w-fear.htm

Meet the little Monsters (Pt 2 Fear Series)




LITTLE MONSTERS INSIDE OUR HEAD

 March weekly series topic deals with “Fear” and how it relates to independent artists careers.

As human beings we all want to be acknowledged for our efforts as well as our triumphs.
 Parental support of our artistic pursuits is not common. Rather than live with the fear of not being taken seriously, or not taking ourselves seriously, many retreat into the shadows, behind barricades built by criticism, when these barricades are  left unattended they harden like little cement walls. These little cement blockades limit our creative growth, when the creative muse is trying to stretch.

Imagine that you live on a great big farm, in a comfortable home surrounded all around by land filled with many trees, thick brush, and heavy foliage. 

You have one long bike path that leads to the main highway, all along the path are these “cement barriers” along the route, making the path difficult to navigate. The path to the highway is much too long to walk, and riding a bike will insure that you get to the main path where the other "riders" are peddling along  down the street.

Learning to let yourself create is like learning to ride a bike, you start with baby steps to gain your confidence,  you learn balance, and technique, you pray that you avoid any obstacles along the way. You are learning, be patient and understand your initial efforts are not going to be masterpieces. Critics will unfairly judge your work against master artists, since that is what “they believe” to be the standard other artists are measured against.
Regardless, what level of success you achieve, the struggle continues.
Master artists struggle with pleasing their fan base, and satisfying their creative muse- Think about when  Bob Dylan went electric, or In this video clip where  Joni Mitchell shares some amazing insights on  Jimi Hendrix



NEGATIVE BELIEFS:

Our Immediate family, fearful friends, spiritual & social communities all weigh in on what notions they “believe” are acceptable.  Each of us has beliefs,  Acceptance of the notions in our mind that something is true or real. 
Beliefs reflect an individuals “notions” about what it means to be a artist, It does not reflect FACT.

Each of us has  a internal dialog that tells us
  • I’m not good enough
  • I will hurt or embarrass my family and friends
  • I will be awful and look foolish
  • I don’t deserve to be successful
  • Artists are not successful = I won’t be successful
  • What if I run out of Ideas

Negative beliefs (notions/ NOT FACTS) keep you scared and stuck, they make you retreat and hide in a safe place, and not develop your skills to prepare you to succeed.

MEET THE LITTLE MONSTERS

To create is part of who you are as a artist, your ability to adapt, and grow will be so much easier if you take the time to clear away the obstacles on your path.
 Each of us can work diligently to clear away the external blockades, and criticisms created by others, that can still leave quite a clutter behind,
Have you thought about the blockades and criticisms that you create?   The scary stuff that separates us from success is being brave enough to clean house INSIDE.

Want to test this out?   Get a blank sheet of paper, and a pen, on  the paper  write 5 times
My name is _______(write your name), I am a successful artist.
As you start writing, and re-writing the sentence, you’ll start to hear a internal dialog “no your not”  “Poser”   “Artist-Shmartist”, all kinds of nasty stuff comes up.
Remember you want to write 5 times “My name is _____(write your name), I am a successful artist”.  Also write down  all the negative stuff, the nasty little monsters that your head dreams up.  Don’t be shocked if there is really nasty things, your subconscious will attack everything, your sexuality, your spirituality, and anything in between

On a new sheet of paper list the negative beliefs that you noted in one column , in the next column, to the right of the “belief” note who said this in your life was it a parent, teacher, partner, friend? Then draw one more line to the write of the person, creating a 3rd column and next to the negative belief write a positive alternative.

Weed out the little monsters, from your victory garden.  Like a garden, from time to time the little monsters will still need  a little weeding out as part of ongoing garden time.
How does your garden grow? Do you have Little Monster you hear from a lot?


 Artist Master Class: Special Invitation:   
More info HERE:  http://www.squidoo.com/guitartam-master-classes

In today's indie market there is TONS of competition. In today's economic market everyone is working harder for even less money. How do you capture the attention of hard working fans that may not even know you exist?

There are lots of ways to invest in your career that help you make meaningful progress toward growing your creative business.

Each month's Master-class topic is focused on helping you grow your creative business. You will be provided with a syllabus filled with exercises and strategies that are successfully used by top selling artists and businesses around the world, that you can apply directly to your creative business!

Visibility Master Class you will learn:

- Identify and Create multiple revenue streams
- How to increase your exposure
- Identify who your fans really are
- How to focus on WIIFTY (what is in it for them and you)
- Which Business partnerships pay off
- How you can use analytics to measure your growth.
-              Apply exercises directly to your business
At the completion of each module you are issued a Master Class Certificate of completion.
 At the end of 12 months you will have achieved Master Class status and receive a  MCC- Master Class Certification

-       Written monthly exercises keep you focused on the area of development, with the guidance of your business development executive and guest experts to educate, prepare, and mentor creative leaders in a safe encouraging creative environment.



Tamra Engle is a independent music business strategist based in the S.F. bay area she is available to help you manage your next project, for private consultations to help you develop your independent music business, or to  produce your next musical demo. You can read more about her,  and join her mailing list at www.tamraengle.com  you can email her at guitartam@gmail.com


 More info HERE:  http://www.squidoo.com/guitartam-master-classes

Acceptance and Approval: Dealing w/ Fear (Pt1 of a series)


March Series topic is “Fear” and how it relates to independent artists careers.

Acceptance is not submission; it is acknowledgement of the facts of a situation. Then deciding what you're going to do about it.  -Kathryn Casey Theisen

"To have your art received as legitimate work and not dismissed as a hobby, craft, or mid-life crisis".

Cultural and societal rituals surround us in our daily lives.  These rituals reinforce morality, opinions, and the expectations of “others” dictating how one behaves in civilized society.

A common childhood playground ritual of getting picked for a team- The desire to be accepted by the cool kids, and the absolute horror and humiliation of being chosen LAST or not accepted by the group.  

As a creative person having your art accepted as legitimate work during your lifetime and not dismissed as a craft or hobby seems to have existed as long as art in all its forms has been created.
For many non-artists, accepting a new form of creative expression that has not been long established, means in their mind it is “not art” and it is dismissed. 

BIRTH OF IMPRESSIONISM:
  In the 19th  century art world the Beaux-Arts in France  was the standard that paintings were measured.   A small group of realist painters, Monet, Sisley, Renior, Bazille, and later Manet, Pissaro, Cezzane were all artists who's works were rejected by the Beaux-Arts Jury’s.

After seeing the rejected works, Napoleon the III  felt the public should weigh in, and the Salon de Refuses (Salon of the Refused)  was organized.  This ultimatly was the birth of a entirely new art movement “impressionism”  
Despite the huge success of the Impressionism movement, the success eluded Cezzane, Monet, Toulouse-Lautrec, and Van Gogh during their lifetimes  .


APPROVAL: " To have everyone LIKE your art" 

The reaction to creating art, manifesting your inner vision into a reality. As artists we get our energy, inspiration, and fulfillment in the process of creating, and sharing our work with the world.
Christ Piss- Andres Serrano
The outside world may not have any response at all to our work in this lifetime, or any lifetime.   Our job as artists who desire to make a living with their art is to satisfy our inner creative muse, and to improve the quality of your work while attracting fans who want to purchase your creations.

Continue to create, refine, and improve the art you are producing, and importantly listen to the feedback you are getting, good, bad, and if this is what your hearing  It's a sign to get back to the drawing board and keep working. You will  know your own the right track when your creating a lot of excitement.   Do you have a acceptance or approval success or frustration you want to share? Please include them in the comment section below-

Artist Master Class: Special Invitation:

In today's indie market there is TONS of competition. In today's economic market everyone is working harder for even less money. How do you capture the attention of hard working fans that may not even know you exist?

There are lots of ways to invest in your career that help you make meaningful progress toward growing your creative business without breaking the bank.

Each month's Master-class topic is focused on helping you grow your creative business. You will be provided with a syllabus filled with exercises and strategies that are successfully used by top selling artists and businesses around the world, that you can apply directly to your creative business, with the help of successful business professionals.

Visibility Master Class you will learn:

  •  Identify and Create multiple revenue streams
  •  How to increase your exposure
  • Identify who your fans really are
  • WIIFTY (what is in it for them and you)
  • Which Business partnerships pay off
  • How you can use analytics to measure your growth.
  • Apply exercises directly to your business

Written monthly exercises keep you focused on the area of development. 
With the guidance of your business development executive and guest experts to educate, prepare, and mentor creative leaders in a safe encouraging creative environment.

  • At the completion of each month module you are issued a Master Class Certificate of completion.
  •  At the end of 12 months you will have achieved your full Master Class status and receive a  MCC- Master Class Certification


Tamra Engle is a independent music business strategist based in the S.F. bay area she is available to help you manage your next project, for private consultations to help you develop your independent music business, or to  produce your next musical demo. You can read more about her,  and join her mailing list at www.tamraengle.com  you can email her at guitartam@gmail.com





MASTER CLASS LINK:  http://www.squidoo.com/guitartam-master-classes

Revenue Streams (pt 5 of Visibility Series)



 Professional Indie Artists I know and represent, who are making a living creating their music all have one thing in common, they all have multiple streams of income.

Are you’re a performing artist or a band?
 Then you know  you  have some revenue from live shows,  Hopefully you have Merchandise that you are also  generating sales from, *In addition to your cd's doo your fans like hoodies, Tshirts or hats? TIP: you can help drive traffic to your website if you have a online store integrated on your site, Some artists prefer not to deal with the inventory and  use a on-demand store like Zazzle.com, or CaféPress.com  

Popular Revenue Streams:

What are some other ways to add revenue to your business?

Live Performances- Tip Jars/ percentage  of the door / Guarantee-Fee for service
Merchandise- Always have something to give or sell to your fans, and know what they want!
Performance Royalties- *you must be registered with Sound Exchange who collects on your behalf.
 Private Parties-Corporate/ House concerts /Seasonal Events/ Weddings, receptions and other major life celebrations pay well.
Licensing- Film/TV/Ads/Cards/ Video Games/ etc
Gigging w/ other artists- there are 7 days in a week, make yourself available to other artists for gigs
Subbing for other artists- People get sick, if you can fill in on short notice, you can keep busy gigging and subbing.
Booking for other bands: Your already booking your own shows and have relationships with the venue owners? why not get paid to book for other bands?  Charge a nominal price per booked gig and you will keep cash in your pocket
 Sponsorships- If you have a large enough audience, Equipment manufacturers will often offer pro pricing, and discounts to sponsored artists.
Teaching/Instrument/Voice- 
Writing- Songs, jingles, Blogging, music books, 
Publishing: Books, songs, Podcasts

Evolve your web presence by creating web portals for the individual streams to create even more opportunities for your fans to find you on the web.

Taking advantage of your own skills, and the skills of your band mates to divide tasks.


How many different revenue streams are you using in your creative business? Share them with our readers in the comment section below.

Tamra Engle is a independent music business strategist based in the S.F. bay area she is available for private and business consultations  to help you develop your independent music business, & manage a balanced creative lifestyle, regardless  where you live in the world, You are only a skype and email away!  You can read more about her and join her mailing list at www.tamraengle.com  you can email her at guitartam@gmail.com
See Older Posts...