I work with lots of creative entrepreneurs and day in and day out I hear the same old excuses (yes, they are) about why they can’t work on their creative business.
It’s always about family, kids, unsupportive spouse, they have dinner to make every day, j.o.b. (just over broke if you haven’t met that analogy yet), PTA, tae kwon do lessons, soccer games, family/friends always come to you for help, “I don’t have time”, “I don’t have space”, “Things are just crazy right now”…
And these reasons continue and persist until there is no time left for creating or building a home-based business. It’s like an endless cycle of the outside world intruding and stealing time, energy, mental space, and the will to even create.
But the real kicker in all of this is that there is this awful majority culture narrative around setting yourself aside (especially if you’re a woman) being wonderfully selfless. That it somehow makes you saintly, or better, or deserving of respect, or deserving of sympathy and admiration. That sacrificing your desires and dreams, wants and goals is somehow an honorable thing.
Yeah. Gold star for giving up.
That idea, that glorifying of the selfless martyr, is such bullshit.
It’s is not admirable to give up on what you dream of and what fills your soul for any reason at all. It’s actually the more selfish thing to do since you’re holding back something big you can contribute to making the world a more full place. Going to the PTA meeting doesn’t make a difference – it just doesn’t. The stuff you do there can be done by any school mom; but what YOU do that is unique to you can only be done BY YOU.
It’s a common line of chatter in groups and communities online among creatives and home-based entrepreneurs: “I get it, it’s so hard to actually get anything done with the kids’ schedules and having to make dinner, and not getting much help…” . Yep. Just like everyone else. Everyone else including those who are doing and achieving their dreams.
Did that sting a little? If it didn’t, chances are that you’re an action taker and that you make things move when you want something.
If it DID sting, it’s probably because you’ve let yourself get away with blaming others for you not pursuing your dreams under the guise of martyrdom.
Let’s amplify what might really be going on inside of the stung mind:
“I just don’t have the time because so-and-so needs this from me and I MUST do it because they need it and no one else can help them it must ONLY be me because I’m the best and things will fall apart if I don’t participate because I do things so well and am irreplaceable, and therefore I must give all of myself to everything that is not my dream and exhaust my capacity in service of others because that somehow makes me better than the selfish people who are doing what they love and are happy doing so. I must sit here in misery because it makes me better than others.”
Yeah, that’s actually the underlying conversation happing in the head of people who make excuses about their time and energy and the world’s demands on them.
This is really an example of ego. Big ego. These people think lots of themselves though they would never tell you that, and instead hide behind making the world think they are humble for setting themselves aside.
If you have talent (and we all do) and if you have the want to share it with the world, it is your DUTY to use it and get it out into the world to transform lives! This is far more impactful than the PTA. More important than a spouses discomfort at needing to fulfill the duties of a parent. It’s more crucial to have this contribution of yours for the planet than helping your sister who yet again can’t manage some banal project in her home by herself.
YOUR TALENT AND BUSINESS MATTER.
If you’re a creative you have a sacred obligation to bring your perspective to life. And if you’re a creative entrepreneur, your business deserves to THRIVE because when it does, people’s lives change.
No more setting your creative pursuits aside.
No more trying to convince yourself that you couldn’t make a business out of your art.
No more believing majority culture narrative that everyone else comes before you.
No more hiding your unique, God-given talent and contribution from a thirsty planet of humans.
It’s time to step the fuck up. You’re necessary, and you come first.