I'm sitting here at eating overly salted popcorn and SweetTarts for dinner at 10 p.m, knowing that today, I failed as a Creative Entrepreneur. My anxiety is sky high. My To-Do lists are miles long. My tax preparations are the biggest mess my accountant has probably ever seen, because honestly, I have no idea what I'm doing. My house is an absolute tornado because I've been so tied up with the preparations for the upcoming wedding season. All of this, and the thing that's weighing the heaviest on my mind- I missed a client meeting today, and it was entirely my own, irresponsible fault.
I received the email from the prospective client and all of a sudden it felt like an anvil was dropped into my gut. My three calendars and tightly-wad schedule had failed me. In that moment, the thought of throwing in the towel and living a life stress-free, cubicle 9-5 life crossed my mind as the concerns and self doubt raced through. What if this happens again? What if I double book myself for a wedding day? What if a future client can't trust me? What if?
Being a Creative Entrepreneur is really, really hard. Other people making a living out of creating will know what I'm talking about. It's an emotional rollercoaster of self doubt, hating your job, loving your job, making mistakes, and having those "wow" moments that leave you craving for more.
*You can go from having two weddings booked for the upcoming year after prime booking season has already passed to the elation of booking the absolutely perfect client.
*You can go from sitting there, comparing yourself to other artists, photographers, and creators who are doing "better" than you to experiencing the adrenaline rush after photographing the best wedding your portfolio has ever seen.
*You constantly have to defend your company and your work when people undervalue the time, sweat, and tears that go into the end result.
*You're constantly crunching numbers and realizing that being a Creative Entrepreneur isn't a sustainable income yet and you have to keep that second or third job.
*Your constantly being bombarded with your own mind telling you that it's not worth it, your not good enough, and that taking the "corporate way" is easier. Just quit.
*You're constantly bottling up all of these emotions and putting on a good face for friends, family, and other creatives. Because business hardships and challenges automatically revert to failure in people's minds. And you don't want to fail. You want to be successful. Admired. Make it look easy.
But as I sit here, as a failing Creative Entrepreneur, I realize that failure is a blessing. Failure means I'm learning. Today, my failure taught me to set reminders 30 minutes before future client appointments. I'll implement a fourth calendar backup, because 3 calendars aren't doing the job, obviously. A messy kitchen means that I'm busy with my growing business. Popcorn for dinner means that I have a husband who supports my business enough that he doesn't expect a hot meal and understands that my nights are filled with editing and emails.
This too shall pass. My wound of being completely irresponsible professional will eventually heal. And I'll learn from the mistake. And if you're a Creative Entrepreneur reading this, I know that whatever you're dealing with will pass to. Let's hustle. Have hope. Count blessings. Dream. Tell the love stories. And most importantly, CREATE. xx, M.