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Needed: Creative Confidence

Whatever your next step is, you are going to be held back from taking it until you become confident in yourself, your skills, and your creativity.

Needed: Creative Confidence - Whatever your next step is, you are going to be held back from taking it until you become confident in yourself, your skills, and your creativity.

Here’s the story.

Imagine for a second that you know you are a creative person. This may or may not be true. Either way, it’s not the time to have the I’m not creative argument. So just play along.

Imagine, you know you are creative. Check.

Imagine, you know how you are creative. Check.

But, there is one teeny tiny problem. You are suffering from some serious creative doubt. You lack confidence in yourself as a creative bad-ass.

So how to change that?

I can tell you to be a confident person, but we all know that doesn’t really do anything.

So how do you gain confidence?

Number 1

Get over yourself. Stop doubting yourself. Stop worrying about what other people might think of your creativity. The truth is no one cares, and if they do and are assholes about it, you don’t need to care about them. I realize this tough talk is much easier said than actually carried out, so here are a few things you can actually do to build your creative confidence.

Number 2

Practice, Practice, practice. Whether you are just starting out or have been at it for some time, there is no way around it. You can’t be confident without putting in the time. Well, technically you can be, but nobody likes those people. The more you practice, the more confident you will become. It’s as easy as that. But, truthfully, it isn’t easy. It’s not easy to make your creativity a priority daily or weekly, but if you want to see the results, then it’s the only way.

Practice until there is nothing else you can say besides I am good enough. “My creative is good enough.” Practice until that’s the only answer left.

Number 3

I know what you are thinking, “okay smartie pants, I have been practicing for forever and I am still lack confidence.” Okay, then this idea if for you. I challenge you to make yourself uncomfortable. Like, really really uncomfortable. Like when you are stuck between two people having the most awkward conversation ever and you have no way out – that kind of uncomfortable.

Why make yourself uncomfortable? You will face a fear. You will force yourself to try something you had previously told yourself you could not or would not do. You most likely will learn something new about yourself, whether it is the fact that you can face your fear and still survive, or even just a new skill that you learn.

One of the best ways to get out of a rut is to try something new. By trying something new, you usually have to make yourself uncomfortable. It’s not fun to suck at something. Especially as an adult. We are used to being good at whatever it is that we do regularly, so it is definitely out of our comfort zone.

What makes you uncomfortable? This is different for everyone:

  • Picking up the phone and calling someone.
  • Signing up for a class so you can learn something new.
  • Trying to make a new friend.
  • Sharing your work with others

Trying something new is scary as shit, but if you ACTUALLY do it, what an amazing high. Then, you have to make yourself do something again, and again.

You can practice until you are blue in the face but if you don’t actually BELIEVE in yourself you are never going to feel confident in your craft, in your creative venture.

Number 4

Fake it until you make it. Maybe you aren’t confident but if you were a confident person, what would your next step be? For example… If I were confident in my writing abilities, I would email this person and pitch them this great idea I have. I’m not confident in my writing abilities – I’m thinking that my writing isn’t good enough (yet), my website isn’t good enough (yet), so I probably should wait longer. No. If I were confident in those things, I would email, so that is what I am going to do. I’ll go ahead.  The worst that can happen? They say no. I move on.
You need creative confidence. Whatever your next step is, you are going to be held back from taking it until you become confident in yourself, your skills, and your creativity.  Whether that is going pro, sharing your work with the world, going somewhere and learning from someone, emailing someone + asking a question. Whatever it is, you need to build your creative confidence. This is not to say that you need to walk around thinking you are the best. But, you must know your creativity is good enough.

Needed: Creative Confidence - Whatever your next step is, you are going to be held back from taking it until you become confident in yourself, your skills, and your creativity.

What You Need to Start a New Creative Venture

What You Need to Start a New Creative Venture. It's even less than you think. Click to learn more.

Starting a new creative venture can be exciting, and also a little scary. Many of us hesitate to try something new because not only do we know we will suck at it at first, but it can also be overwhelming to figure out where to even begin. Sound familiar?

If this is your first time here, understand that when I speak of a creative venture, I mean anything that makes you happy and fulfills you. If you have read anything I have written in the past, I hope I have made that clear that your creativity can look however you choose. So whether your new creative venture is a hobby or a business – or something in between – it can be scary when you first start, it’s no fun to suck at anything.

So how do you gain confidence in your creative venture? Easy. You practice. Then you practice some more.

Confidence comes from practice. Everything gets easier the more often you do it. Creativity takes practice. Driving takes practice. Painting takes practice. Sharing your work takes practice. Writing takes practice.  Each part of the creative process takes practice. We all know this, but often we avoid starting new ventures because we know we are going to be bad at them first.

There is a great quote by Maya Angelou, “creativity, the more you use, the more you have.”

It is so true. I feel as though this is the most creative I have ever been. I am flowing with ideas (some good, some bad, some horrible) and I find that if I challenge my creativity each day, it keeps getting better and better. Truthfully, I am not actually more creative now than I was five years ago. I am just practicing my creativity on a daily basis, therefore it seems to come more easily for me compared to when I was not making my creativity a priority in my daily life.

Over the past year, I have tried a lot of things that I have never done before – all related to the creative venture of launching Greens & Blues Co.

  • set up a website
  • designed a logo
  • created an email newsletter
  • tried to learn how to take better photos
  • writing blog posts/email newsletters
  • Contacted people I don’t know and pitched them ideas

I have never done any of these before. I am not a web designer. I am not a graphic designer. I am not a writer. I am not a photographer. I do not know how to market. But, that’s okay. I do not have to be an expert at any or all of these in order to try something new and put myself out there. I learned how to do them by spending hours Googling LOTS of stuff, actually reading the Pins I saved on Pinterest, and putting in the time to try them. In the end, if this (Greens & Blues Co.) is all an epic failure: my courses suck and people hate me, I will have at least tried something new, grown as a human being, and learned a lot of new skills. Not so bad.

Each time I write a new blog post, take photos for my website, or email someone new with an idea it all gets a little bit easier and I get a little better at them. Or at the very least, I THINK I get better at them, so none of them are quite as scary as they were to begin with.

What You Need to Start a New Creative Venture. It's even less than you think. Click to learn more.

So what do you need to start a new creative venture?

  1. Your idea. Decide what you creative venture is. (If you need help with that, I wrote about it here and here).
  2. A plan for embarking on your new creative venture so that you don’t feel overwhelmed and just quit – or worse, not even start. Don’t miss next week’s email for details on this (sign up here to make sure you get it).
  3. Confidence. How do you gain confidence? You have to put in the work. You have to practice.

Your homework: Between now and next Tuesday, I want you to come up with an idea for a new creative venture – remember it can be a hobby or business, but something new that you will try in order to push yourself creatively. Next Tuesday, we’ll talk about how to start.