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13 Things You Should Give Up To Be A Successful Crafter

So I came across an article written by Zdravko Cvijetic on recently, that remarkably managed to narrow down to just 13, the number of things you should give up to be successful. My initial thoughts were somewhat skeptical, as I can list more than 13 chocolates alone that I would have to give up, never mind all the other deep and meaningful things. That said, I am a crafter, a creative… so generally the rules of normal human thinking don’t apply to me in Purple Fairycorn land. So would I be successful giving up these 13 things too?

Give up your unhealthy lifestyle…

Eating healthy and exercising is what’s called for here… So as a crafter I take this to basically mean a diet free of sawdust, spraypaint and wood splinters from chewing on the end of my paintbrushes. My biggest challenge would be to avoid getting sucked into my deeper than deep space “creative zone”, where the only thing being eaten is my time, and a whole day goes by where I forget to eat real food that doesn’t sparkle or need drying time.

Exercise is easy, I get so much exercise from raising my expectations that my resin will dry bubble free, that my paints will dry the same shiny juicy hue they were in the bottle, and that my masterpiece will turn out exactly like it looks on Pinterest, that I am practically as ripped as Superman… mentally though, not physically, which is good thing, I guess.

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“Give up the short-term mindset”

So this one’s about long term goaling with short term habiting for normal people… Now I don’t know if you’ve ever had to wait for paint to dry or for Herbert Evans to have an art sale, but only true creatives and visionaries are able to wait for that end goal, no matter the days, hours or months that must go by. Crafters are among those rarest of humans in this world that have mastered the patience skill to levels that are almost supernatural when it comes to their creations. Because they have to. Because fingerprints and smudges when wet.

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“Give up playing small”

Okay, so this one is a bit tricky… don’t shrink down to accommodate others feelings and don’t be afraid to fail. I don’t know many crafters that accept compliments on their work with, “Yes, thank you, I know how super awesomely talented I am, and how mind meltingly amazing my work is”… modesty is a hard thing to give up for creative geniuses such as myself. I do know that I’m not afraid to fail though. If I can try to make something new, or test out some new craft, I will… no fear of the unknown there, no sir, and my overcrowded cupboards of every craft material known to man will prove that. I think what I should really give up here as a crafter is my small house that can’t contain my wool, paints, spray paints, brushes, decoupage, scrapbooking, markers, colouring books… there’s more but you get the gist.

“Give up your excuses”

Yes yes, an artist never blames his tools, fish paste etc.… but seriously… crafters have some leeway with this one, surely. I mean, I just cannot pour resin on a project if the resin has dust in it, or if the cup has resin in it, actually, I just can’t pour resin. If you think that’s an excuse, go try it… I dare you, kiss your floors goodbye. Resin aside, bakers can’t bake without sugar… oh, they can? Never mind. Then think of a knitter who doesn’t have needles or an artist who must use his hands to paint and doesn’t have any,  no, wait… You know what? Crafters are awesome and they don’t make any excuses to create, resin is just dumb, and that’s what I’ll give up to be successfully sane.

“Give up the fixed mindset”

Change your mindset that talent alone is what it takes to succeed, and that you don’t have to put in effort as well. Um… look, I don’t know how other people’s fixed mindsets work, but as a crafter, I know that as talented as I may think I am, ain’t no painting going to be painting itself just by having my super talented self stand next to a canvas. The only fixed mindset I would have to give up as a crafter is I don’t have enough spray paint colours, because no one can achieve greatness with a mere twenty colours.

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“Give up believing in the “magic bullet”.”

So normal people cannot believe in the magic of overnight success and must give it up. No, sorry, not going to happen… I am creative, and this idea of a magic bullet appeals to me, and you used the word magic, which is my kryptonite. Now I’m fixated on a magic bullet and what it can do, and does it come from a magic gun too? Maybe wielded by a magic person… Also, as a crafter, overnight success is actually a thing… you paint it, it dries, overnight… success.

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“Give up your perfectionism”

Ugh… really do I have to? No, I’m a crafter and making things perfectly is kind of a thing… I can’t make something knowing it not perfect. Hours must be spent examining said creation for any small blemish until it’s pronounced as complete… or is that just me? I get that most things can’t be perfect, like the family dinner you cook, that has some glitter in it, or your child’s hair you brush for school… that has some glitter in it. But my crafts must be perfect, and generally glitter tends to makes them that.

“Give up multi-tasking”

Look, I have to say I agree with this one. My life as a crafter would be a lot better if I focused on one thing, and didn’t have to spend five minutes, every five minutes, looking for the thing I just put down five seconds ago. This one’s universal, crafter or no.

“Give up your need to control everything”

Oh no problems here… given up, gone, forgotten. As a crafter, you learn this lesson a lot. Nothing will teach you that you are not in control more than a dirty acrylic pour or a dropped stitch if you a beginner at knitting. Been there, done that… got the dirty floors and tangled wool balls that were meant to be jerseys to show for it.

“Give up saying YES to things that don’t support your goals”

This one is a brain teaser… you’ll find that if you’re creative, invariably you’ll be asked to help with a lot of things where ideas and glitter are required. However, most crafters have a goal in life… to always be crafting, so really… if you’re helping Aunty Liz hand make wedding decorations, or baking themed cupcakes for Cousin Johnny’s birthday… you’re saying yes a lot, but also to crafting. So it’s a win-win in my eyes.

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“Give up the toxic people”

Another one I think also applies to all crafters… including me… maybe only me, I don’t know. I must stop talking like I’m the United Nations of Craft here. Personally speaking, if I encounter people who cannot see the dancing rainbow unicorn in my abstract art, or the genius of tying sticks together to make super interesting home décor, I know I should either ditch them, or give them the sticks for Christmas. No one needs the kind of negativity you get when someone is bad smell squinting at your masterpieces. Also, on the subject… I should wear masks when spray painting, it’s not only people that are toxic.

“Give up your need to be liked”

Goes hand in hand with step 12 of what to junk in your life. Except… as a crafter it’s more about caring that people like what you make more than liking you. So give that up by order of the United Nations of Craft. Not everyone is going to see your dancing unicorn vision. In a perfect world, everyone, including you, is Bob Ross-ish, genuinely awesome, amazingly talented too, and all the trees are happy. If that’s not your world, guess what? You’re an artist! You can just make whatever world you want, out of tinfoil and papermache, you’re like a crafty MacGyver with Heritage Modge Podge and Glue Gun and no one can stop you escaping reality.

“Give up your dependency on Social Media and Television”

So I’m just going to go and YouTube a How to Make Handmade Christmas Cards, while I ask my Craft Group for suggestions on Wedding Decorations, and check Pinterest for pictures of Unicorns, while I update my Instagram Feed with pictures of my current project progress. I find this to be a toxic request that I have to give up, because I need to say yes to things that support my goals. The internet supports my creative goals with ideas. #lol #aintgonnahappen

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There are valid points made in the original article, and you should probably go read that, a lot more profesh than my ramblings. As for me… I’m just going to stick to what makes me happy, and give up what doesn’t… it’s what Bob would do.

Happy Bobbing
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One thought on “13 Things You Should Give Up To Be A Successful Crafter

  • Nicole SmithNovember 27, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    Hey! Thanks for taking the time to read this blog! Please leave a comment and let me know what you thought…!


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