Dealing with family disappointment over career choices is common for many. And for a lot us in the artworld, it’s a continuing struggle.
Here are 5 ways to help your family understand your career path in the art world better.
1. Tell your family how much you love your job
It is rare to hear people say, ‘I love my job’ today. If you love the work you are doing and see a future in your career, celebrate this uncommon achievement with your family and shout it from the rooftops. Your happiness and motivation will help them understand the joy you can get out of work.
2. Ask why they are not keen on your current career choice and explain your role better
Getting to the centre of why your family feel as firmly as they do could help ease your feelings about their dissatisfaction. The hostility from your family toward your career can feel less harsh when you know the reasons for their attitude. Being inquisitive about their responses can also make the conversation less of an argument. The art world is a big business. Explain there is more to the art world than meets the eye. There are so many facets of the art world that one can work in, the possibilities are enormous, much wider than there was than in previous decades.
3. Accept that they may never accept
We all want approval from family, but part of maturing is learning that your choices will not always be understood and coming to terms with your family’s thoughts. Learn to accept that your parents are not you. What you do in your career does not necessarily reflect on them. Understand that your family loves you and their intention is to do good in your life. So, keep working hard and prove them wrong.
4. Don’t adopt their disapproval as yours
If your family make you feel inadequate because of the career you want, that does not mean you are inadequate. Believe in yourself and don’t waste too much of your energy trying to change opinions … do your thing, and don’t care too much if they like it or not!
5. Thank your family
Show your respect and value their suggestions. They say respect is a two-way street. And this becomes paramount when it comes to talking to your family about to your career. Even if they may never show you their genuine understanding, you can thank your loved ones for helping you become the person you are.