I hope you had a wonderful holiday and are excited to jump back into creating new artwork and developing meaningful new relationships for your art career and business.

You may have noticed I’ve been quiet over the past couple weeks. That’s because, every year around this time, I make it a priority to be present for my loved ones and I try (as much as humanly possible) to stay away from social media. Taking this time away always leaves me feeling refreshed and with new ideas to put into practice!

So here we are, in 2019!

How are you feeling? Excited? Hopeful? Already overwhelmed?

When the new year comes, I think we (myself included) tend to make too many promises (to ourselves and others), take on a few too many “shoulds,” and pile on a bunch of resolutions—trying to convince ourselves that this year “will be different.”

We work hard to stick to these resolutions for the first few days of the year. Those of us who are more resilient might even make it through an entire month or two. But, ultimately, almost all of us end up falling back into our old habits and are disappointed with ourselves for not following through.

But let’s face it, change is hard!

Without the right mindset, strategy, habits, and accountability, it’s almost impossible to create sustainable change in our lives.

And that’s why, for a few years now, I’ve stopped making the same old resolutions and, instead, started getting clear on one area of focus where I concentrate all my energy for the next 12 months.

So, what do I mean by an area of focus?

First, let me tell you what an area of focus isn’t:

  • It isn’t a “motivational list” taken from one of your favorite pinterest boards

  • It isn’t a list of “to-dos” or “shoulds”

  • It isn’t the ongoing list you keep adding to, year after year, without actually doing anything on it

Instead, an area of focus is:

Outcome oriented: Instead of listing what you will or will not do this year, identify your desired outcome. An outcome you really want is much more inspiring than a list of to-dos!

Associated with a “why?”: If you don’t know why you are going to take action, if your desired outcome doesn’t resonate with your values and your vision, then what’s going to motivate you to follow-through?

Aligned: Life’s too short to do things that suck the energy out of us. Yes, you do need to get out of your comfort zone to grow personally and professionally, but it should make you feel good and energized. Or at least, if the action doesn’t, the outcome should. :-)

Focused (obviously): And this is the important one!!! Enough with the never-ending lists, please! We can’t (and shouldn’t feel that we have to) do it all. I’m challenging you to choose just one area of focus—not two or three or ten! Just one! And stick to it!

It can be finances, family, health… you decide!

But I can hear you already… “Are you crazy, Catherine! I can’t choose just one, I need to take care of my health and build my business this year. I can’t afford to choose.”

I know, I get it. I’ve been there.

You know what my biggest takeaway in 2018 was?

I realized that if you focus on one area that needs development in your life—I mean really focus and do the internal and external work—then the results will impact ALL other areas of your life.

Don’t believe me? Try it and let me know in three months how it turns out.

Unless… do you prefer doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result? I think not! (Everyone knows that's the definition of insanity!)

So, what are you choosing as your area of focus this year?Tell me what 2019 will look like for you in the comments below!

The next few weeks are going to be exciting at The Artist Entrepreneur HQ because I have great new content in the works for you! Stay tuned for more details.

Here’s to a happy, healthy and fulfilling year!