“If I argue for my limitations, I get to keep them”
- GAY HENDRICKS
I have said it before and I’ll say it again. Money is one of the easiest problems in the world to fix.
Sure, you might have to apply yourself and do some work to bring money to you, but compared to many other large scale problems like cancer, world hunger, mental illness etc, there are so many ways to solve the issue of “not enough money”. I know, a little extreme, but bear with me.
As musicians, we tend to view money as something negative, or something we don’t need because we can live off of what we make doing our art. Or we work part time jobs that suck all of our energy just so we can support our artistic dreams.
We even see musicians who make a lot of money as selling out!
There is no reason you can’t make money AND be a successful musician and artist.
I’m a big fan of “and” not “or”, and I believe the starving artist mentality is completely ridiculous.
In fact, did you know that this mentality has only been around for approx. 150 years? It came about after Henri Murger wrote his novel, “Scenes de la vie de boheme”, which inspired french artists to follow a “bohemian” lifestyle of poverty because it was trendy, and was the only way to really prove they valued art above all.
Artists felt that they had to suffer for their art or it wouldn't be considered legit. SERIOUSLY!
I don't know about you guys, but this annoys me to no end.
A group of people believed it was "cool" to be poor and struggling in order to create true art, so the rest of us now live with this stigma around what we do? I also find it very hard to believe that only true art comes from suffering. Pain and trauma can inspire art for sure, but so can love and happiness. Anyway, thats a post for another time.
In short, its not cool.
We get told that artists and musicians don't need to make much money because they love what they do.
You know who else loves what they do?
Lets look at the jobs which made the career bliss list for "happiest" job in 2017 (And their salaries).
Marketing Specialist - $52,075
Recruiter - $57,019
Graduate Teaching Assistant - $28,972
NET Developer - $75,295
Director of Marketing - $86,417
Directional Driller - $178,155
QA Analyst - $74,175
Technical Lead - $84,511
Senior Engineer - $100,630
Network Administrator - $73,910 per year
Interestingly, the only one which paid under the national average of $51,000 was the Graduate Teaching Assistant. So, it is possible (and in fact, quite overwhelmingly obvious) that happiness does not have to result in sacrificing financial stability in a career.
I could talk for DAYS about this, but what I want you to realise is that the things you tell yourself to justify why you are underpaid are just constructs of your own limiting beliefs.
They're not true. You are valuable, highly skilled and have every right to live the life you desire.
Don't make excuses for why you can't pay rent this month, use your skills to make it so you never HAVE to rent again! (unless you want to)
Don't allow society's view on artists hold you back financially.
Be that person who is happy in their job AND can afford to live in the way that makes you happiest. If thats a 5000 square foot home in the Hollywood hills, figure out how to make that happen and get there! (And invite me to visit please!)
By mastering your limiting beliefs around money, you’ll be able to take control and defeat the starving artist mentality in your own life, AND inspire the people around you to do the same! Success inspires success!