Your Mindset And Skillset Determine The Results In Your Business

Your mindset is such an important thing to understand and implement in your creative life and business.

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The Results In Your Business Come From Your Mindset And Skillset

Whatever your current business looks like, it’s directly traceable to your mindset and skills.

The perfect example is how many businesses threw up their hands in the first few months of the pandemic and all of it’s second-order effects.

Many artists and creatives were hit incredibly hard. The gig economy shut down overnight and still hasn’t recovered.

Currently many states are seeing a second lockdown, government orders to stay home and limit gatherings.

Hard to have a show with hundreds or thousands of people to come hear you perform in those conditions.

Yet, none of those things are in your control. They never were.

Whether a venue owner booked you on a show, whether people showed up, sure, you could influence those things, but you never had 100% control over them. If you did, every show would be sold out and you could play to the same crowd multiple times a week at $100 per ticket.

That’s not reality. Not now, not then.

The main difference between those that are thriving right now and those that no longer have any income from their art is their mindset.

Your Mindset Is More Important Than Your Skillset

There are plenty of other musicians, photographers, artists, filmmakers, stylists, designers, and more that have the same level of skills – or greater – than you do.

Yet some people who lack on the skillset still have managed to grow their business this year, find new ways to make an income, and are reaching more people than ever before.

With the right mindset you can use your skillset in new ways that lead to new opportunities. With a bad mindset you, instead, decide that the events around you are too large to overcome and you give up.

Two quick examples –

When the pandemic hit the U.S. my wife’s photography business stalled. Rather than lament the loss and postponing of shoots, the channeled her energy into a side-business with her sisters and started doing photo shoots and even video interviews of people who were using the product she created.

Those highlights and videos were viewed hundreds of times and led directly to sales of their planner.

Same skillset, different mindset.

Hayley Barry is a hand-lettering artist. When the pandemic hit, she wanted to bring some awareness to local shops that didn’t have the budget to advertise and saw a dramatic decline in foot traffic to their businesses.

She decided to take her hand-lettering skills and apply it in a different way to help others, like here and here.

She saw things a different way than others and has grown her audience and her income over the last 8 months because of it.

It’s not the skills you have that determine how well your business works. It’s your mindset.

Whatever you’re experiencing in your business right now, you can change or improve it with just your mindset.

The answer isn’t to work harder – it’s to see the situation in a different way and approach it with a different mindset so that you can not just survive, but thrive.

A few questions you can ask to help focus your mind:

  • what outcomes do I truly care about?
  • who do I want to serve?
  • what do they really need right now?
  • how can I use my skills to help them?
  • what other assets do I have that I can use in different ways?

Take Action

None of this really matters if you don’t do something about it, right? Here are some quick wins that you can implement immediately to start affecting your mindset.

  1. Start your day with gratitude – think about what you are grateful for, what you’re excited about, and the people in your life that make you happy.
  2. When things occur that knock you off your game, give yourself just 1 or 2 minutes to feel the emotions, then brush it away. Reset, and get back into a state that helps you create.
  3. Go into every interaction with someone in a “peak state” – a 9 or 10 on a scale of 1 to 10. Show up as your full self in everything that you do.
  4. If there’s something you need to get done that you’re resisting, see if you can find a way to change the meaning – or change your mindset – to approach it a different way.

Your Mindset Determines The Results In Your Business

You are 100% responsible for the results in your business. What you do with that information – your actions – will determine whether you succeed or not in the future.

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This post is part of the 60 Day Project – one post a day to help you prepare your business for success in 2021. Subscribe using the button below to get new posts sent straight to your email.

I wanted to take a stab at a fundamental business mindset – taking responsibility.

When COVID-19 hit the US this year, it affected everyone. From individuals and families who have dealt with the virus and lost loved ones, to businesses that have closed, and governments who have scrambled to lead, I can’t think of anyone whose life hasn’t been affected in some way.

However, when we talk about how COVID-19 affected us, our mindset is quickly revealed.

Covid wiped out my business”

“The shutdowns have ruined everything”

People just aren’t XYZing anymore”

What do you say when you talk abou the affects on your business?

Our Actions Reveal Our Mindset

I’m not saying that you’re wrong – you might be completely accurate in what happened to your business. There certainly is a pandemic, shutdowns have occurred, and the economy has been hit hard.

But none of those things determined the current situation in your business.

Rather, your actions in response to those events – or your lack of action – is what caused the current reality.

If you had a mindset of resiliency, of responsibility, of taking action and getting resourceful, you likely have not only survived this year, but have even found new avenues to grow your business and reach more people.

If your mindset was one of victimhood, then you were able to justify doing nothing. Waiting for someone to come save you.

I’m not judging you one way or another, as neither is an inherently “right” or “wrong” stance to take. I do believe, however, that you can directly link the results to the mindset.

The Success Of A Business Is Determined By The Mindset And Skills Of The Business Owner

What’s more, 80% or more of that success is determined by the mindset of the business owner.

Today – to keep things short – I want you to think about the language that you’re using when it comes to the impact COVID has had on your business.

Are you being resilient and resourceful? Are you feeling like a victim who has no options left?

The reality, I believe, is that you are 100% able to create the reality that you want for you and your business. It comes down to your mindset and the actions that that mindset inspires.

If you’re struggling right now, check your mindset. Check your actions. Take responsibility for the current results you’re experiencing, and then do something to change it.

Improving Your Mindset With The “We’ll See” Principle

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This post is part of the 60 Day Project – one post a day to help you prepare your business for success in 2021. Subscribe using the button below to get new posts sent straight to your email.

I try really hard to not comment on the day-to-day events because a) you never have the full story within the first hour or two of events breaking, and b) that commentary is out of date within a few days.

But there’s a principle in that approach that applies to our Mindset, which is what we’re talking about this month in the newsletter.

Today I want to cover a principle that has served me well over the last few years professionally and as I’ve been building two new businesses.

The “We’ll See” Principle

I love this story that illustrates the principle perfectly:

Once upon a time, there was a farmer in the central region of China. He didn’t have a lot of money and, instead of a tractor, he used an old horse to plow his field.

One afternoon, while working in the field, the horse dropped dead. Everyone in the village said, “Oh, what a horrible thing to happen.” The farmer said simply, “We’ll see.” He was so at peace and so calm, that everyone in the village got together and, admiring his attitude, gave him a new horse as a gift.

Everyone’s reaction now was, “What a lucky man.” And the farmer said, “We’ll see.”

A couple days later, the new horse jumped a fence and ran away. Everyone in the village shook their heads and said, “What a poor fellow!”

The farmer smiled and said, “We’ll see.”

Eventually, the horse found his way home, and everyone again said, “What a fortunate man.”

The farmer said, “We’ll see.”

Later in the year, the farmer’s young boy went out riding on the horse and fell and broke his leg. Everyone in the village said, “What a shame for the poor boy.”

The farmer said, “We’ll see.”

Two days later, the army came into the village to draft new recruits. When they saw that the farmer’s son had a broken leg, they decided not to recruit him.

Everyone said, “What a fortunate young man.”

The farmer smiled again – and said “We’ll see.”

Call it Stoicism, call it perspective, call it whatever you want. This attitude, or mindset didn’t change the events. The man in the story realized, fully, that these events were out of his control and decided rather to focus on what he could control – himself.

This same mindset can be applied to every aspect of your life. Making it a global mindset – one that applies in every time, place, event, no matter what, is what will help you get through “crazy weeks” and come out ahead.

The difference between someone who makes $100,000 a year and feels content and fulfilled and grateful, and someone who makes $1,000,000 a year but is constantly chasing “more”, is mindset.

The difference between someone who overreacts at something that happened online and someone who is able to keep scrolling without engaging – mindset.

How To Start Working On Your Mindset Today

Two things that I’ve found very helpful especially when it comes to social media:

1. Put down your phone.

Have times throughout the day where you have your notifications off and can get some deep work done. Put it away before you go to bed, rather than scrolling until your eyes are too tired.

2. Don’t immediately respond.

I can’t think of a single time that I regret not posting some quippy response or jumping in to tell someone all of the many reasons I disagree. Sure, it’s hard, but in the long run, it will play out better for you if you let it go, and focus on what really matters.

I love this tweet from Justin Mikolay when it comes to social media:​

Shifting your mindset when it comes to social media is a simple action with huge benefits.

What about your business?

We can’t forget about how to apply this to your business. My suggestion:Think long-term, not short-term

When it comes to how you react to the events in your business, don’t let something that happens throw you off your game for more than a few minutes.

You don’t have to become a robot and emotionally detatch from everything. It stings when a project falls through, a client doesn’t pay you, or when something you create doesn’t land with your audience in the way you hoped it would.

Rather than get upset, say “we’ll see”, and get on with the things you can control.

A year from now, the things that happened today won’t be something you even remember, let alone their effect on your business.

Your business is a cumulation of hundreds and thousands of days, events, people, projects, and actions. Don’t let a single one distract you from your goals or mess with your mindset.


PS – Again, be sure to check out the giveaway that’s running this week, and share it online for extra entries. There are prizes for those that share it, so go and enter today.

PPS – Two newsletter recommendations for you today from two people I’ve grown to really enjoy – not just their writing but following online.

I already mentioned Justin Mikolay (link to his twitter account), and his newsletter is one that I actually allow into my inbox. He does the painstaking work of culling through 3000+ top tweets of different individuals and summarizes them. I imagine it’s a lot of work, but the way he distills the info is really great.

Check out his newsletter at

The second recommendation this week is to follow Codie Sanchez and her newsletter Contrarian Thinking. Codie deeply understands what she calls Contrarian Arbitrage – finding opportunities where others don’t see it. She writes about investing, building wealth, and growing businesses.

Subscribe to her newsletter at

The Importance Of Mindset For Artists And Creatives

Your mindset can make or break the success in your business and in your creative life, both in the moment and over time. Here’s how to address a mindset that’s holding you back and make the necessary changes that will set you up for success.

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This post is part of the 60 Day Project – one post a day to help you prepare your business for success in 2021. Subscribe using the button below to get new posts sent straight to your email.

Defining “Mindset”

Another way to think about mindset is to use a different term – set of beliefs, worldview, or perspective, maybe.

Your mindset encompasses everything you think, believe, perceive,etc to be true about something.

You have a mindset about food, sports, religion, politics, business, and yourself.

As I’m sending this the day before an election in the United States, you can see how someone’s mindset can affect their opinions and decisions.

If your mindset is that there are “sides”, and that the “other side” is bad, then you’re going to vote the opposite of that side, right?

You can start to see how a mindset can be a good thing or a bad thing. That it can enable you or limit you in what you’re able to choose, do, and achieve in your life.

Why Your Mindset Matters

Let’s refocus on our business. What are some common beliefs that people have that hold them back?

  • I can’t because…
  • I don’t have money/equipment/connections/time
  • I’m not ready
  • It’s never been done before
  • They can because they have all these advantages…

Now, how enabling is that mindset? Does this set of beliefs help you feel inspired or motivated? Heck no!

We haven’t even started to try yet, and we’ve shot ourselves in the foot mentally.

Without a proper mindset – proper being defined as something that helps you, not hurts you or holds you back – you will never become what you seek to become.


There are two types of mindsets we want to look at this month – momentary and global.

The global mindset is the long-held beliefs and views that you’ve held for a long time, the things that guide your life.

  • Money is good/bad
  • Being an artist is/isn’t worth the risk
  • The purpose of my life is…

These are worth looking at to make sure that the things you believe still align with who you are now. It’s common to find that we still have beliefs instilled by our parents or teachers from when we were younger that have never been reconsidered or checked.

As you age – go through college, relationships, job and career changes – your beliefs can change, but you need to give yourself permission to look at those long-held beliefs and question if they’re serving you or holding you back.

The momentary mindset is where you are in the moment.

  • How you feel when you wake up
  • How you feel when you get to the office
  • Whether you’re stuck on a project or not
  • How you interact with others
  • How you feel when you get home
  • How you treat your partner and kids

This is where I want to start today to get some quick wins for you and your mindset.

How To Start Changing Today For The Better

Take a minute and review the last week. How many times did your momentary mindset cause you to feel frustrated, lazy, crappy, unworthy, looked down on, or insignificant?

How many times did you feel great when you got up, ready to face the day? How many great interactions did you have that left you and the others you were with feeling lifted and happy when you left? How many moments of joy did you experience throughout the week?

What do you see when you think about these two sets of questions? Is your mindset helping you or hurting you?

Here’s the awesome news: You are 100% in control of your mindset.

No one else has any power over whether you feel good or bad, inspired and motivated or down and out.

Mindset is a choice.

As we’ve seen in the examples in this post, the way you choose to show up has a dramatic affect on your ability to do the creative work you seek to do.

It affects your interactions, your work, your clients, your fans, your relationships, and the success or failure of your business.

So, today, make a new choice.

Do you want to improve your mindset? Then choose to do it.

Do you want to show up in a different way at work and at home? Then choose to do so.

Remember, it’s 100% in your control.


PS – If you haven’t yet, be sure to subscribe using the form below to get new posts in your inbox to get you prepared for a massively successful year in 2021.

If you’re looking for more on mindset, check out the Make Something course on Craftsman Creative – the first few modules are a deep dive into mindset and aligning your beliefs with your actions to get the most out of your creative work.