Written By: Jordannah Elizabeth
No one wants to be forced into a set of rules and regulations that have no true value. Any rule that doesn’t promote or create the safety or protection of a collective’s health, or coordinates order in circumstances that would otherwise become chaotic and dangerous is only based on the ruling class’ tastes and social standards. There is no reason to feel like one truly has to adhere to the philosophical or moral boundaries of self assigned leaders, taste makers and industry professionals.
How you handle yourself professionally, particularly as an artist and independent contractor can be a completely malleable, and one should hope, creative and personally innovative process. Your manager, PR professional and publicist may have a model and idea of how to do things. If you do have a promotional staff, it is important to be confident in the fact that they work for you to promote the best synopsis of your own self image. Their involvement in your promotion is completely up to you, whether you’re led to believe otherwise has a lot to with how much creative control you allow the people you surround yourself with.
Conscious Self Promotion isn’t all about how spiritual you are or how aware you are of the sociopolitical climate of the nation your reside in. It has to do with how conscious and aware you are of what you project when you are sharing information about yourself to the world.
The Art of Conscious Self Promotion is more about avoiding misunderstandings and misconceptions with your audience when your professional or artistic persona doesn’t line up with personal nature. After a certain level of success, every artist, business professional and independent contractor begins to yearn authentic relationships. Having your core values understood upon meeting new people is something most human beings crave in social situations. Here are some tips on how to stay true to yourself, so you can be treated the way your desire through the different levels of your career.
Do Not Promote What You Cannot Afford The best way to promote your image consciously is to buy your own clothes for promotional shoots. If you choose to work with stylists and designers, work with someone or a team that believes in your art/cause/product and will dress you for free. If you choose to wear a suit or gown that is worth more than you are be able to afford, think about the maintenance of that image and how much it will cost you to continue to wear that caliber of clothing to future events and in your daily personal life. If you naturally prefer comfortable and affordable clothing for your day to day life, before you become very popular, imagine how you would present yourself if you obtained a lot of money. Would you continue to wear your favorite affordable styles or would you immediately evolve to wearing higher end clothing? It’s important to plan ahead because if you change your style very early on in your career, you could find yourself trapped in a persona you may want to evolve out of later on. Do your best to be comfortable consistently from day one. They way, you will exude comfort and confidence to your colleagues and audiences.
Foresee Your Audience There is a difference between a “target audience” and your actual audience. One of the very first and most important choices you will make in your artistic or promotional career is what audiences you want to serve. As an artist, you provide a service of entertainment. If you are naturally compassionate and hope your art will have a healing effect on people, you should understand that you will be shooting for an audience that is more spiritually inclined. If you feel that there is a lack of a certain artistic and promotional presence in a geographical area, your art and promotional materials should be specifically targeted to the cities and countries you want to touch. This would require you to have a strong understanding of the culture, language and social politics of the places you want to touch.
If you are more of an open artist/professional and want to share your message/product with anyone who will naturally connect with what you’re sharing, be as open as you can with the audience that embraces you. If you don’t have a plan. you may obtain an audience that consists of a group of people you’ve never personally interacted with or who you may have a different value system. Do your best to treat everyone who enjoys your work with equality and tolerance.
Understand the Value of Privacy Everything we do affects circumstances and the people who are closest to us. What you may believe to be an innocent sentence or photo shared online can send someone you love spiraling into an emotional tailspin without you being aware of it. Try to be mindful of the information you share about your friends and family when you are promoting yourself. If you tag your mother or siblings in a photo on social media, you are opening up a door for others to invade their privacy. Have a serious conversation with your family and loved ones about your public persona and how it may affect them before your popularity gets overwhelming.
Think Before You Speak It’s obviously not always easy to know where you stand on every issue. It’s even hard know every single thing about yourself. We as humans tend to go on autopilot in our day to day lives and don’t always know why we do or say things, nonetheless, the media will want to know every morsel of your artistic process and about your past. Make sure you understand yourself well enough to be able to speak eloquently about your personality, past – and then your product and your art.
Get Involved in Conversations and Criticism Conflict and criticism will come no matter how conscious you are about your work, image and self promotion. Try not to get too defensive when people don’t understand you, or even say unkind things about you. You can use social media to respond to criticism head on. It’s an even better idea to line up interviews to have a conversation about your criticism and your general thoughts and ideas about the way you conduct yourself in life and in your career.
Understand Your Boundaries and Personal Morals You may unconsciously be living by a code of conduct. Before you even decide what causes and political beliefs you may want to support, craft and understand the very simple core morals you live by. This will help you craft a decisive and consistent stream of communication with your audience.
Pay Attention to Feedback Make sure your circumstances and the opportunities you are working towards are manifesting the way you imagined them. If you’re not attracting the results you hoped for, you may want to pay closer attention to what’s going on around you. Professional manifestation rarely initially comes in the form of cash. They come in opportunities, friends and professional relationships. If you’re not attracting kind people or friendly situations, you may want to be more discerning about who you share yourself and your time with.
Watch Children If you want to know a very conscious way to succeed, spend time with children. Watch how they relate, communicate, bargain and share. It will give you some clues on how the essence of human nature works.
Trust Yourself When it all comes down to it, you are in charge of your entire experience and message. There is not a person, amount of attention, amount of money or love that can make you transform, conform or perform without first making the decision to do so yourself.