When all the gigs disappear suddenly, entertainers get desperate and they’ll do whatever they can to survive. We can get very vulnerable to bad decisions when we are living in a narrative that drives fear. You can get ripped off … by yourself.
Don’t jump into doing shows on Zoom. Don’t immediately start a Patreon.
As I see entertainers trying to figure out how to pay the bills, I see one thing they may be ignoring which is weighing in on their unhelpful choices. Imposter syndrome!
Everyone in and out of the arts at some point feels like they don’t fit the role that they are playing in life. That’s because we don’t fit roles. Roles are stereotypes without bounds that are impossible by nature.
Many entertainers are now facing a lot of who they are in this moment. We usually think of imposter syndrome as coming up when we get the big gig, and that’s why I’m warning you to be extra cautious of it now.
Think about it. Do you really deserve that $30,000 gig that got canceled or were you tricking them into it? Did you somehow get a block booking on a tour when you are offering just as much or less quality than the band that’s sitting at home?
If these thoughts are coming into your head, firstly, you’re probably wrong. Secondly, these thoughts are gonna really screw up your ability to…
Step 1 is to adjust to your imposter syndrome. See it. Understand that it’s a part of your human mind.
Step 2 know that it’s going to affect your decision making. Just like when when I’m angry at Bob’s Gyno & Gun Shoppe, I notice it and calibrate. Slow down and talk to Martha carefully to make sure I’m kind. She deserves it.
Step 3 remind yourself or alert yourself to the value that you bring — why did you get paid so much for IRL shows? A lot of the time it’s just being there. It’s not because you can plié better than every other pliér, it might be because you show up for every single dance rehearsal with energy, and a smile and people love working with you. That’s super valuable! All the things you do that make your clients/ customers/ directors happy are what your true value is.
Step 4 while you’re pivoting to your new career, think of how to bring that disembodied value and all the intellectual capital from your stage gigs into this new thing. Let it stew in your head.
Your result might be “I do really great magic tricks that are perfect on a camera, I look attractive, and not much else.” If that’s the case, maybe you’re a zoom show person.
Your result might be “I build relationships with my audience members and they love giving me money over and over again.” Then go for Patreon or Youtube and digital downloads
Your result might be “I help people in corporations bring employees together in a safe environment.” and you might pursue sending emails to people and offering them help.
There are a million possible ways to create your new career. I want to encourage you here to not put blinders on. Don’t think you need to do a show because that’s what you’ve done. The show part might be a very small part of the value that you bring… but if you were paid before you do have value. Use it!