Networking Tips for Artistic Success – Who You Know Opens Doors

Listen up, struggling artist. I know you’re trying to do everything yourself, because I’ve been there. 

But the BS idea of being a lone wolf artist is exhausting, because you can’t ask for help on tests, you can’t pay someone to write your paper, you even have to do your own taxes. You have to do it all by yourself. 

What if that’s all wrong?

I used to think I had to do everything – like it was cheating if I didn’t DIY every damn thing. 

I fixed my own car, did my own laundry, mowed my own lawn. I was busy as fuck, but getting nothing done. 

This is the rat race in disguise. Staying so busy you can’t make any real progress with your art. 

But it doesn’t have to be that way. Wake up, Neo.

Realize: you’re a piece of something bigger.

A holon is a whole entity…and a part of a bigger whole at the same time. (Wikipedia)

Atoms make up molecules, molecules turn into structures, shit combines and coalesces to create cells, cells form organs, organs make humans, humans are just pieces of organizations and families, and those pieces make up communities, nations, and the whole damn species. Got it?

Being a holon means realizing that, even though we’re complete on our own, we still need each other to survive. We can’t do shit alone.

It’s all about perspective. We’re wholes, but we’re also parts of something bigger.

Building a strong and broad network makes us stronger and, according to a study from Germany in 2018, even happier. Another study found that people with the most friends live up to 22% longer than those with only a few friends. That’s the value of connection.

Strong social connections reduce fear and risk, plain and simple. Here’s one way that works:

Having a solid network means never worrying about earning a living.

Ivy League graduates have an advantage in landing jobs just because they’re connected to other Ivy Leaguers, even if they’re not the top candidate. Their alumni network gives them a golden ticket.

The same perk applies to fraternities, sororities, Freemasons, and even high school D&D groups. Connections reduce fear and risk in life.

I used to be a lone wolf, but now I know better. 

My grandparents were my safety net through my 20’s — I could do plenty of stupid shit without fear. 

But that safety net didn’t last forever. When they passed, I was fortunate that I had a strong network to fall back on. 

When business slows, I reach out to my network and suddenly I’m reactivating 6-10 clients without even talking about work.

A robust network equals the confidence to take risks. Start a new business, try a fresh style – someone in your network will be intrigued. Safety in numbers is like a warm blanket of money.

Find someone for everything else.

Let’s bring it back to that feeling of “cheating” if you ask for help. 

After reading Who Not How by Dan Sullivan and Benjamin Hardy, I decided to get rid of the guilt of asking for help. 

There’s someone for everything, especially for the tasks you suck at. 

Focus on what you’re good at (For me — that’s tattooing, writing, and art) and delegate the rest.  

No need to waste time on stuff like changing oil and mowing the lawn. Hire a killer mechanic and pay the neighbor kid to mow your lawn. 

You’ll have more time to do what you love and spend with those you love. 

It’s liberating, not cheating.

Take the next step now.

Are you ready to escape that rut you’re stuck in? 

Step one: create a list of everyone you have regular contact with. Ditch your Facebook “friends,” and list the people you actually talk to.

Take notes on each person, don’t overthink it. 

Now: think of anywhere you need help. Don’t waste time asking ‘How?’ reframe it to ‘Who?’ 

Look for the answer already in your network or reach out to someone new in the next five minutes and make your network one person larger.

Welcome to your new freedom. Enjoy the fresh air.

This is part 1 of a multi-part series on networking for artistic success. Make sure you subscribe to my newsletter if you want updates for every new article:

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