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The Bad News about Creativity

There’s bad news about creativity—being creative is completely anxiety provoking. If you don’t create you’ll be anxious, if you do create you’ll be anxious—it’s just a matter of picking your anxiety. Isn’t that a mind-blower?

I got this bittersweet nugget from Eric Maisel’s book Fearless Creating. Before reading his book, I’d been waiting to begin creative activities until I felt positive and at ease about it. I tell you, I waited a lot.

When I was working on my first book, I was like a wallflower version of Muhammad Ali. My point is that I could “dance like a butterfly” only it was AWAY from the writing. I back-pedaled, I ducked, I ran.

I was also missing the “sting like a bee” part of the equation. I didn’t take swings or make much contact with my writing. I kept waiting to feel inspired before I did that. And I only felt worse; not doing anything, except waiting to feel better, was not working out too well for the production of my book.

What got me out of this funk? A friend demanded that I finish the damn thing so she could use it in a class she was teaching. In three weeks, it was done. For me, it’s outlandishly motivating to have someone I know actually use my creation.

Naturally, each of us has individual buttons that push us closer to, or further from, creating. We’ll investigate a number of them in this blog as we go along.

For now,

  • Which button of yours is pushing you away from creativity?
  • And which is pulling you toward creativity?


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