The Difference Between Leading & Following as a Creative

A Father’s Love designed by @K_DougDE

In today’s society, the internet & technology as a whole has taken over everything. From the cars we drive, down to how we learn in our schools. This is great in most areas of life as it makes things easier & more accessible. But this can also be a set back overall for a creative looking for that big break in life.

Growing up as a young black girl, I have always been very close to my father. I have always looked up to him in so many areas of life including my entrepreneurship journey. Most don’t know it but he is one of the main reasons why I began Delux Designs (DE), LLC from the ground up. He would take me and my younger brother along with him as he managed and worked his own small business of landscaping for local area housing developments and businesses around our hometown. I remember siting in the back of his work truck, just watching him cut all these huge lawns in these expensive neighborhoods. That exposure is what set my mind on wanting and desiring to own my own business or service one day….and I did just that as soon as I got to college. I wanted to be like him, making my own work schedule while also helping someone solve a problem they may have or providing a service that people can enjoy overtime. With his encouragement & guidance I have accomplished just that so far over the last 10 years.

My father not only exposed me to the entrepreneurship world but he also taught me many lessons preparing me to become a business and service owner. One of the main lessons that has stuck with me my whole life from my father is a quote he would drill into my mind almost daily, “You are a leader, not a follower.” That one quote has been a driving factor for me not only as an entrepreneur but also as a millennial artist in this day & age.

You are a leader, not a follower.

With social media right now everything is being rushed constantly. You can easily see how much everyone including artists have a strong desire to make it big….. right now. Not many are valuing the importance of patience and the proven fact that great things take time to grow. With this mindset, comes eagerness and poor decisions being made. One of those poor decisions includes the act of following over leading. Wanting to become rich and famous right now, has led some creatives to following the paths of those they deem as being rich and famous right now in the social media world. Again with social media rushing things so much, many up and coming creatives see the success of others and believe that they made a quick come up overnight and this is such a toxic mindset to have because it is never true.

Those that have made it big did not make that come up overnight. In fact, it was not a quick process at all. We all have to remember as creatives that social media only tells one half of the story and most of the time that half of the story being told includes only the good parts. What is not being shown are the bad parts, the setbacks and the sweat and tears that was put in overtime to become successful. I guarantee, the most successful entrepreneurs and creatives you see online doing good for themselves went by the same teachings that my father taught me. They made it where they are now and became so successful overtime by leading and not following.

A successful entrepreneur and business owner focuses on their own path and doesn’t follow and copy what another is doing. It is always alright and a good thing to be inspired by someone that is successful, I highly recommend having that source of encouragement, but we also all have our own path in life and the key to successfully traveling that path is to stay focused in our own lane. Just think about it, if you are focusing on the car beside you while driving, for example, you won’t see what’s ahead of you in your own driving lane, possibly causing you to run into something or someone else due to you not paying attention to your own lane. This is the exact same concept of being a leader and not a follower. Focusing too much, or focusing at all, on someone else’s path in life can cause you to miss out on your own blessing in life to become just as successful as them if not more than them. Focusing on another’s path can also cause you to kill your own dream. Don’t get distracted by what is happening on social media by spending endless hours of scrolling, double tapping and commenting. You could use that time to post your own content and build your own following and fan base for your own business or service.

I encourage you all to take my father’s quote and this post as a wake up call to begin focusing more on your own content and your own dreams. There is enough money and fame out here for us all and you’re never missing out on anything when you are focused on bettering yourself.

A Father’s Love designed by @K_DougDE

New merchandise and prints are now available for purchase with our affiliate partner Society6 for today’s illustration A Father’s Love by clicking here. Also check out another article on Medium written by our founder @K_DougDE titled Avoiding Acceptance by clicking here that goes along with our post on the differences between being a leader and a follower.

Disclaimer: Affiliate links have been included in this post in which Delux Designs (DE), LLC receives a commission from any sales made through this post. We assure you, the products featured through DE from product reviews are products that we recommend based off of our own personal experiences from using them.

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5 thoughts on “The Difference Between Leading & Following as a Creative

  1. Social media has a way of only showing one side… the side they want you to see! It can be very misleading! As a social media marketer and entrepreneur I try to use social responsibly:) and I’m definitely a leader 🙂

  2. Indeed! I just love this whole write up. And totally agree with you on this “A successful entrepreneur and business owner focuses on their own path and doesn’t follow and copy what another is doing”.

  3. What a lovely print! It’ll serve as a great reminder to continue striving for your goals on terms that make sense for you. I appreciate your sentiment that these things take time. It’s motivating to see progress but not at the expense of blindly following another’s path.

  4. I couldn’t agree more. It really shadows the true talent with those who just know how to spin a falsity using the right technology.

  5. I think creatives, or any entrepreneurs, need to worry less about others and just do their thing. Like you said, there is room for everyone to succeed and gain notice.

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