Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Creative Karma

I don't know about you, but when I began my crafting business I wanted to keep secrets.  I wanted to be so secret that I didn't even tell people about myself.  I owned my product and I was threatened by anyone who came near it, except to buy it.  Yep, threatened.  I didn't realize it at the time, but the insecurity of being a newbie can do that to you.

By now I've been in the game long enough to know that creativity is like love ~ the harder you hold onto it, the faster it dies.  One thing that brought me around to this way of thinking were the Etsy Success Articles.  I subscribe to e-mail notifications of these articles and read them religiously.  So much information is shared in these articles including success stories, how-tos, and tricks of the trade.

Recently I read a couple of articles included in the Etsy Reading List regarding Creative Tithing.  I have to admit the word "tithe" may have a negative connotation, but in this context it makes a lot of sense.  Both articles are about how we should tithe our creativity first to give back some of our bounty and second to create some good karma for ourselves.

What would I have done had it not been for that generous person who gave me my first Etsy sale simply to show me how a sale looks on my computer?  Where would I be without forums and blogs giving valuable information regarding sales opportunities, supplier contacts, and general encouragement? 

Now it's time to give back, and to keep giving.  Not only will you be helping someone out, or simply making someone smile, you will also notice the boomerang effect of your generosity.  Check out these two articles written by Catherine Ivins in her Olive Bites Blog.

Be free to support your fellow artisans.  Everyone loves encouragement and adulation.  Go "heart" some Etsy shops.  Tell the lady behind the table at the craft show how much you admire her work.  Buy something to support the handmade movement and give it to a friend, just because.  Share just part of the knowledge, time, and money that has been given to you.

There's no sense in keeping it all close to the vest.  Open your arms and set free the gifts you have received and welcome the gifts to come.  Be happy for those who are successful and encourage those just beginning.  Tell other people about artists and crafters you like through your blog, facebook, or even verbally at the water cooler.  Spread the word.  Spread the joy.  Give 10% of your monetary and emotional profits to support others.  It'll make you feel really good.  It will help other people.  And your returns will be monumental.

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