Oh Brooke, I love that new term, Thought Pets!! I just listened to the recording of the last call (since I was unable to make it live).
I related to the last caller (Elana?) in many ways, except for one notable difference. My husband and I have inherited money over the years from several relatives who passed away and we own our house outright, so we don’t really need to worry about money, barring some horrific thing happening.
I feel (1) ashamed about this, since I didn’t achieve it by working hard for it, and
(2) terrified if any friend of mine should find out (I assume it would lead to jealousy and poison the friendship if they knew); I don’t spend a lot on my appearance, I drive an old car, etc.
(3) bashful about asking for money for what I do (I’m the artist who has had trouble making sales).
I keep my prices what I consider reasonable, but I still feel awkward asking for the sale from someone who I know has less than I do. And all the people who complain I’m expensive, I internalize those complaints and feel bad. But I also don’t want to just give my work away to people for free.
On top of all of this, I have the most poisonous Thought Pet of all (instilled in me by my parents when I was very young, and my brain continues to find evidence for it): Art is a hobby, not a job. There is no money in art.
I have had Creative Block (not producing new art) for months, and experience a lot of internal resistance to making art, even while scheduling time for it this past month (I don’t always honor the schedule) — which (from doing models) seems to be due to the following thought pets:
– no money in this anyway
– can’t find the right people willing to pay for it
– people will not like me anymore if I am successful at turning it into a business (because they feel it should not be a business)
– what’s the point of making stuff that nobody wants
And – resentment when I learn that other people are successful at it (sometimes people whose work I don’t think is as good as my own)
I don’t work hard to achieve my arty and businessy goals because I feel like “what’s the point.”
I loved the advice you gave her to come up with 3 examples every day of people who are proving the belief wrong, and to do models on people she resents.
I’m wondering if that advice would work for me too. Examples of people who are successful at what I do (I can think of several, but probably not three per day, haha) and doing models on people I “resent” (e.g. artists whose art I don’t like, but who are making money anyway b/c their marketing works? Competitors? Rich people??)
Another question: You told her “Hard work is fun if you know success will be the result of it.”
What if you don’t know or believe that success will come as the result of hard work? What’s another way to get working? Is there another thought to ladder up to it?
Thanks so much.