Creative Hustle Habits: What To Keep, Release Or Grow

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Ahh, the good old creative hustle. The drive to keep creative ideas alive and flowing while making a little side scratch to build a business, or simply keep our personal creativity flowing in the day-to-day.

Freelancers especially understand this dance, as we try to choreograph it with available projects and staying creatively engaged in our work. At times it can be exhilarating, like winning a prize at the last minute that you never expected, and offers great experience – plus cash!

However, there are old creative hustle habits we do in autopilot mode that fizzle our hustle instead of setting on fire in a bigger way. This can become a bigger problem to side-step once we’ve been in the habit of these outdated behaviors for a while.

Whether you are a photographer, writer, designer, filmmaker, or all of the above and more, it may be time to take a deeper look at what behaviors guide your unique creative hustle game.

Here are some things to reflect on to upgrade your creative hustle habits, as you prepare for a more creative, empowered new year:


Practice tapping into your intuition and how you listen to its wisdom.

Our intuition is always informing us, but we don’t always make space in our mind and heart to hear it. When we have a complex work schedule with various creative projects and clients, it’s essential to get dialed into the gut and let it lead the way. This connection helps us tune into our unique creative flow daily, choose the best projects for our skill set and self-growth, steer us away from things that are not a fit, and in general, guide us to stay focused and empowered from our core needs and beliefs. 


Focus on skills you find interesting and push you to grow.

To sharpen the inner creative hustler means pumping up creative entrepreneur skills, while fostering inner creative gifts. Explore what can be learned from fellow creatives or entrepreneurs, or check out online classes at Skillshare or Udemy. Learning one or two skills that add to a core creative toolset can significantly increase positive creative hustler habits.


Review going market rates for all the types of creative work you do, and determine if it’s time for a raise.

Creative hustlers are often multi-talented, while also undervaluing their worth. When it comes to rates, look at what each type of creative skill would cost separately, as well as together in a package of services. Don’t be afraid to raise rates, even if at first some clients drop off. It helps cull out time-suck clients and things that are not worth energy and attention anymore. 


Get really clear on the types of clients you enjoy, as well as the ones who challenge you, and why.

We’ve all had difficult clients. Some we can learn from and move past the challenges to create a stronger understanding and relationship with them. Others just aren’t a good fit, and it’s important to understand why. This gives us the insight we need to avoid beating ourselves up and continuing a collaboration that doesn’t serve usm to focus on what’s worth growing. 


Clarify a plan to balance time between work and self-care.

We all need a plan for self-care as part of our creative hustle habits. It’s what helps us to stay grounded, healthy, mentally clear, and in our creative flow – where all the magic happens. If you don’t have habits that include exercise, healthy eating, daydreaming, creative play, time in nature, journaling or something else that generates balance mind, body and spirit, try out a new routine. Also feel free to connect with me for a creativity coaching session where I can offer personalized suggestions.


Review collaborators. Are you involved with powerful, interesting, dynamic creative collaborators? Or is the work share pretty lopsided?

Collaboration is great, until it isn’t. If you don’t feel you are learning anything new or are always doing the lion’s share of the work without support, speak up. People may not realize it’s happening, or understand your personal experience of it. Also be sure to look within and get really clear on what you do want in a collaborative experience and partners, then practice expressing it.


Understand your distraction behaviors and how you use them. It can be people, things or habits.

One of the easiest ways to derail our creative hustler habits is by distracting our attention with chaos, drama queens, dating opportunities, online shopping, and X (insert distraction here). The important thing is not to blame ourselves, but notice when we do it, and how we are feeling when we do. What feeling or experience are we trying to avoid that drives us to distract ourselves?


Remember, as we evolve, our creative hustle habits must evolve, too. These are just a few ways we can polish those skills and take our creative expression to a new level in a grounded, fulfilling way.


For more posts on a similar topic, check out How We Unleash Our Natural Talents When We Get Clear On Our No’s or The Real Story Behind All Your Creative Footsteps.  Looking for more intuitive guidance and clarity around a specific creative block, schedule an intuitive reading