Creativity

So I’m sitting here, pondering what to write about. I’ve been a terrible person, not sticking to the plan.

If you know me at all, you’ll know it is indeed a chaotic scene when there’s no plan and I’m involved.

Steven Pressfield is one of my new favorite authors and his book Turning Pro speaks great truths about what it takes to transition from average joe doing some crap somewhere to becoming a professional and doing what you really want to do.

There’s a small passage in Turning Pro that fits well in today’s post:

Twelve-step programs say: “One day at a time.” The professional says the same thing.

He’s right though. I could sit here and ramble about how I can’t figure out anything to write, how my creativity is available for just a moment, and how planning out a crazy level of future posts would be fruitless and a waste of time.

If I said all that, it would be true. Sitting here thinking about planning out content makes me tired and want to just watch HBO (which I plan on doing after I finish writing this, anyway). Planning isn’t going to bring creativity. Inspiration is just a trigger for creativity. I could sit and stare out my window at the street and get inspiration creative.

There’s a million ways to come up with an idea, but the best one is the one where you take it one step at a time, one day at a time.


Incapacity

What do you think of when I say that amateurs look for excuses?

It’s a rhetorical question and I don’t expect an answer. Instead, that sentence should really be a statement. It’s an obvious one to someone who’s paying attention, but on the inside, it’s harder.

Also known as the easy way out, looking to find a way out of a tough situation by copping out or giving up is modus operandi of those who can’t hack it. Amateurs.

I’m not talking about people who aren’t good enough at a specific thing. No one should expect to be experts at everything they do. What I’m talking about is life. Sticking with the shit that comes your way. Dealing with less than ideal situations.

Whoever first said “shit happens” is the realist realist the world will ever experience. One thing a professional understands is that sometimes you step in it, but the best route is to clean it off and keep moving.

This idea became one I find myself gravitating towards after reading a relevant passage in Turning Pro:

The habits and addictions of the amateur are…self-inflicted wounds…[Amateurs] no longer have to face the real fight of our lives, which is to become who we are and to realize our destiny and our calling.

That’s not some hippie shit from a guy smoking weed. That’s real talk from a guy who used to be an amateur. If you’ve ever thought about reading what it takes to rock life and kick it’s ass, he’s the guy to go to.

Think about this: how easy is it to make an excuse? It just slips right on out there without anyone noticing… except you… time and again… uttering the same garbage… because you can’t accept the fact you failed at something… or many somethings.

A pro would admit wrong and rectify it. Today. Right freaking now.

You also don’t see pros telling their boss they didn’t have time to create that presentation that’s due today, even though all they did was sit on Reddit and bitch about their boss. An amateur is quick to make excuses for themselves to protect their mediocrity and constant state of incapacitation of potential.

I made a small resolution to kick ass this year, and this is one of the many ways to do it because 2015 isn’t quite over. I don’t have to relocate my foot in someone’s ass physically, to rock my goal.

One of the many ways it starts is by accepting the challenge that lays in front of me, every day. Each moment, there’s a hurdle, and each moment I can jump or smash into it like a lumbering blob of crap.

The latter doesn’t sound so appealing, does it…


Keeping Score

I decided to start a project for the wrong reason. It’s because of this reason that I ended up giving up said project for the short term.

I thought I had it all figured out. I carved out time on my calendar, I made plans, I had an idea…

Turns out, the measurement for success in this project was grossly incorrect, and I realized it a couple days ago when I picked up Steven Pressfield’s Turning Pro. I never finished the book, so I felt it was appropriate to continue.

I came across this passage and it really hit home surrounding this project:

The real utility of money is its convenience as a medium of exchange. If you and I have a goat in Smyrna, we don’t have to carry the poor beast in our arms all the way to Aleppo to trade it for a carpet. We can sell the goat in Smyrna, stash a silver dairy in our pocket, then take the dairy to Aleppo to buy the carpet.

But when we’re addicted to money, we become hooked on the metaphor.

Is money how we keep score? Is it magic? Is wealth a currency that opens doors, realizes possibilities, produces transcendence?

– Turning Pro

In my case… it was.

I thought I could craft this project and end up getting rich quick. I’ve seen enough documentaries on how that’s never the case but yet I thought otherwise. When my project started, I got a huge influx of traffic to it and I thought it was going to be smooth sailing.

Then the traffic died off, and everyone left. Not a sole gave a damn. I was hoping they’d throw their digital selves at me in the form of coming back or contributing, but they didn’t.

I wanted to make money off this project. I wanted it to become a full-time thing. I didn’t think about the other battle I was waging that would ultimately affect this one.

Losing sight of what’s most important in any project is common and while sometimes it’s recoverable, other times, there’s no way to go but to the bitter end.

I canceled my subscriptions to all the things necessary to keep it running. It’ll die in a few days, and that’s OK by me. It shouldn’t have ever lived. I wasn’t ready for it and I made a Frankenstein.

Such is life.

Learning experiences can be tough sometimes, but when you’re keeping score for all the wrong reasons, it’s bound to happen… and it should. It keeps reality in play.

So instead, I’m focusing on what’s most important and fulfilling for me. I need to keep my head in as few places as possible, while still getting enough stimulation to keep myself fresh and mentally alive.

Too many outlets can lead to burn out, even if all said outlets are appealing. Sometimes, going back to the basics is exactly what the doctor ordered.


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