Graciously Accept Criticism
Being an artist is challenging, but mostly just intrinsically. I'm not saving lives or physically changing the world or curing world hunger. I'm making music. It doesn't matter, but it does.
Anytime you decide to do something that isn't fueled by a standard vision of "success is about how much money you make," people feel entitled to throw in an opinion. This is a necessary part of art, and I believe it should be embraced. If I'm making something with the intention of connecting to other humans, I want people to tell me how they feel about it.
However, most people are not experts. Most people, I would argue, form opinions as a reaction of an emotion.
I posted a photo on Instagram yesterday (just a pic of me smiling happily) with the following caption:
"What do you do?"
"I'm a musician." Gosh, finally being able to say that is one of the best feelings in the world. I have been without a desk job for over a month now. During this time I have focused on nothing but my music career. Paychecks aren't always guaranteed, but I've never been happier. I have a very long ways to go to make this career sustainable, and I can hardly wait. :) #DoWhatYouLove
Even though that photo was received with 99% positive feedback, one negative in-person statement resonated with me: "It seems a bit...premature to post that."
While I understand where this person is coming from, I also know that, if anything, my decision to tackle this career full-time is, if anything, five years overdue.
Criticism will help us grow, but we shouldn't consume it as fuel. It's a tool, not a life source.