Inspiration isn’t the problem.
When you can free your thoughts to go where they want, while remaining curious, mindful, non-judgemental and compassionate, you find yourself overcome with ideas; wondrous, explosive moments where the dots momentarily connect.
In fact, the inspiration part is easy. Too easy. Whether through art, music, stories, conversations, human connections or the simple knowledge that we’re actually on a planet, there is a vast and never-ending supply of inspiration hurtling toward us at any given moment. Occasionally when the flow is strong, ideas overflow; there are more ideas than time with which to capture them. It’s strangely frustrating. Rather than trying to find inspiring ideas, it becomes a matter of trying to fend them off, then somehow prioritise between the ones that remain, and make a go of a select few.
It’s a good problem to have, but it’s a problem just the same.
The risk is that we become overwhelmed by inspiration-overload. Each idea is unique, beautiful and in some way or another worth exploring. But then, we try to act on too many at once (none of which happen particularly well), or worse, act on none at all (and slowly go mad).
I struggle with both of these daily, which in addition to an (un)healthy measure of perfectionism, can render me almost immobile. It takes a long time for me to put anything out in the world.
However, despite the fact that it takes far longer than it should, or that in the process I most likely break every rule of creativity, business, entrepreneurship or just general ‘time-management-savviness’, I get there eventually. I go with what feels right, I pick an idea (generally, the one that won’t go away), and then I get to work.
The bulk of the time invested on my chosen creative projects isn’t spent on the projects themselves (although I do seem to subconsciously assign myself ‘busying’ tasks, for the sole purpose of procrastination). Rather, the bulk of the time is spent on a necessary process of thought, over-thought, uncertainty, doubt, understanding and acceptance, where I will pull apart the idea from every possible angle to arrive at the same realisation every time: I don’t have a choice.
It’s the simple acknowledgement that I’d rather do it and fail, than not do it and wonder.
You’d think the knowledge of this fact would help to avoid
wasting investing so much time building courage to dare to begin with. Apparently not. It’s still tough and scary, no matter how well-seasoned you are in venturing into the arena.
…the more I think about it, the more I realise that’s actually a good thing.
How do you build courage?
Something I need to put out there right now: I’ve had an idea. I really like it, I’m excited and I’m getting to work. I’m going to share it soon.
Now I have to deliver.