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9 Steps to Creating Your Ideal Animator Lifestyle

ben marvazi 2020

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Everyone has their ideal lifestyle. Whether it’s far from the way you currently live or well within reach, you probably have an ideal lifestyle, too.

The way you live now as an animator, as a friend, or as a family member is a reflection of all your choices and efforts in the past, and your life in the future is determined by the way you live now. So, how can you get your dream life as an animator?

The truth is, not everyone can live their ideal animator lifestyles today because of external factors such as a lack of money, time, resources, sicknesses, etc. However, everyone can get there eventually with the proper adjustments and resources.

What is that ideal life, anyway? Let’s start with what it’s not. When you don’t enjoy the job you have and constantly compare the way you live with how others live, you realize you’re not living the life you want.

You start asking yourself where you want to work, when you want to work, what kinds of animated videos you want to work on, etc. That’s a pretty good start to creating your ideal lifestyle as an animator.

Having an ideal animator lifestyle is not about having a perfect life. “Perfect” doesn’t actually exist.. To have an ideal life as an animator means to have an animation job you learn from and earn enough money from.

It also means being able to have enough rest and recreation time with the most important people in your life, be proud of your small and big achievements, and share with the world your passion for animation.

In this blog post, we share with you the steps that will help you create your ideal lifestyle as an animator.

1) Define Your Ideal Animator Lifestyle

a man who has full control over his life


To start creating your ideal animation lifestyle, ask yourself: what is the reasoning behind your desire to change your lifestyle? What do you want to do, and who do you want to be involved in your lifestyle?

Also, ask yourself where you would like to live. Will you live in a permanent residence, or will you go to different places a few times a year?

What factors do you have to consider when building your animator lifestyle? Will it be financial resources, animation skills, etc.?

Make sure that this idea is realistic, honest, and actionable because this will be your future life as an animator.

2) Create Your Vision Statement

a man asking a woman what she wants

GIF from CHEEZburger via GIPHY

Defining your ideal animator lifestyle may still seem broad and overwhelming for you once you get the basics sorted out, so it would be good to break it down and make it more specific into a 1-year goal, 5-year vision, and a 10-year vision.

What do you want your life as an animator to look like after a year, 5 years, and ten years? What steps do you need to take in order to make your visions for your ideal animator lifestyle come true?

An example of a vision would be, “In my 10-year vision, I have a steady source of income from animation projects every month. In my 5-year vision, I have mastered how to make videos with different animation video styles using several animation software. My 1-year goal is to improve my animation skills by drawing for several hours each day, taking online courses, and starting my own YouTube animation channel.”

3) Remove What Is Unnecessary

a man talking about removing what is unneccessary

GIF by MCDM Productions via GIPHY

There are people, things you own, activities, bad habits, or activities in your life that may be holding you back from achieving your ideal animator lifestyle.

As early as now, eliminate those things or people that do not bring any value to your life. If they don’t make you a better person now, then they definitely won’t be of any help in making your animator lifestyle possible in the future.

For example, if you think you need to use your phone less each day in order to get more animation work done, change your environment or get away from what could tempt you to use it.

You can put your phone in another room while you work or turn off your notifications if that is what you believe will be beneficial for your ideal lifestyle as an animator.

4) Start Building Beneficial Habits

a woman reading a book

GIF from Mic via GIPHY

A habit is something you do regularly which, after an amount of time, can affect your life positively or negatively which is why you have to be aware of every little thing you do. It’s like a double-edged sword that can work against you or for you.

This is why it’s important to self-reflect and see which habits are helpful and which are not. Determine which good habits you need to start and bad habits you need to let go of.

According to James Clear, author of Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, success is the result of daily habits and not once-in-a-lifetime transformations.

James Clear mentions that if you want to reach your destination, don’t set goals. Focus on improving your system instead. It’s your habits that eventually get you to your goals.

The sooner you start building good habits, the better and faster you will achieve your ideal animator lifestyle.

Some habits you can start building now are regularly reading animation books, learning more about animation from YouTube animation channels, seeking animation mentors, practicing your animation skills each day, and looking for animation clients.

5) Start Your Freelance Animation Career

a man's hand on a drawing tablet

Image by Szabo Viktor via Unsplash

Having an ideal animation lifestyle means you can spend most of your time animating and doing other things that make you feel the most like yourself.

If you previously worked full-time for an agency, business, or studio, you now won’t have to always work from 8 am-5 pm, or 9 am-6 pm.

To avoid the 9-5 grind, you should observe the market in the animation industry, compare how you’re doing with other freelance animators, and learn how to best attract animation clients.

It’s always a good idea to see what products and services other animation businesses and individuals are offering so that you can differentiate yourself from them.

6) Create Your Daily Routine

clock, ballpen, notebook, phone

Image by Freestocks via Unsplash

One of the best things about creating your ideal animator lifestyle is that you have full control over your time. You get to decide which days of the week you want to work, how many hours you will allot for work, and when to have time for your hobbies.

Make sure that the time and effort you’re putting into your animation projects will help you gain profit and at the same time give you time to rest each night.

7) Be Accountable to Others

a man telling another man to check himself

GIF from Bustle via GIPHY

There will be times when you won’t feel that motivated or inspired to work towards your ideal animator life. Feeling that way is okay, but you have to be motivated most of the time if you want to reach your goals.

If you’re struggling to find the motivation on your own, consider the concept of accountability. When you are accountable to someone or a group of people, you become more motivated to continue what you have started.

For example, if you promised your colleague you would present to him a new animated video as your practice by the end of the week, you will most likely work hard on your video and show it to your colleague at the end of the week as promised.

8) Find a Mentor

a woman talking about listening

GIF from Reddit via GIPHY

Building your ideal animator lifestyle may be new to you and you will need mentors to guide you through.

You can definitely research and figure out some things on your own, but it might take you more time, energy, and money compared to when you have an animation mentor by your side who has gone through what you’re going through and gained a lot of knowledge and experience.

By working with skilled and talented people in every area of your life, you will waste less time. Instead, start your animation business and quickly build your network of animation clients and start your freelance animation business.

9) Make Time to Travel

a woman in the Grand Canyon National Park

Image by Drif Riadh via Unsplash

Traveling is one of the most fun and life-changing things you can do. You should do it as often as possible. You can opt to travel domestically or abroad as often or as long as you want to (given the pandemic, this isn’t always an option, of course).

Traveling around the world will allow you to see things from a different perspective and learn about the cultures and traditions of other nationalities. You might even get new animation clients and art inspiration while you travel. 

Final Thoughts

Creating your ideal animator lifestyle will take a lot of thinking, time, and effort, but it is possible. You will need a strong will and motivation to achieve it. Remember that it will be worth it in the end if you get to live the animator life you believe you will truly enjoy.

If you want to know more about the business of animation and other tips for animators, check out our free marketing handbook and our master class.

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