Is your art business a primary focus, every day? Or do you take vacation days to get away and recharge?
Recently, the Boston Globe printed an article about the growing trend of Millenials working every day, even when on vacation. This behavior has grown in the last few years, and stems from a compulsion to stay connected with the workplace and not fall behind. Most of these workers typically don’t use all of their vacation days.
Putting in marathon workdays is a long-standing practice for many self-employed people, including artists. And staying diligent about those hours in the studio without keeping a regular 9-5 schedule is more the norm than the exception for many creatives.
Sometimes, it’s a fact of life that there is a day job to take care of, and precious studio time is taken whenever possible. Working weekdays in an office is followed by weekends at fairs and festivals.
At other times, projects can require intense working hours. You may be in residence, working on a complex installation piece. Or building inventory in your studio for the upcoming holiday season. The often-irregular pace of commissions, wholesale orders and opportunities can make for a feast-or-famine attitude, driving you to put in the time when you have sales.
You may find that bookkeeping, marketing, planning and organizing takes up to 50% of the time spent on your art business. Those essential tasks pull you out of the studio, giving you even less available time to devote to designing, experimenting, and producing. Are there ever enough hours in the day?
Email, social media and interruptions are constantly available – as close as your phone. Are you addicted to checking updates and messages?
Constant work without any down time actually makes you less productive. Taking a break increases it. Finding a balance prevents burnout and increases creativity.
What’s your experience? Do you tend towards being a workaholic, burning the midnight oil? Or do you schedule in breaks, days off and vacations, getting entirely away from your business? Has that recharged your creative batteries?