Creativity isn’t only the domain of painters, writers, musicians, and dancers. There’s also a lot of imagination and artistic expression in business. One of the best parts of starting a business is the thrill of a blank slate and building something out of nothing, but how do you muster creative courage?
As a business owner, you get to create logos and name things, implement policies and systems, and be the decider all kinds of things big and small.
Ah, the freedom of running your own show!
But then… doubt creeps in and you start to think WHAT IF people don’t like my ideas?! Oh gawd, what if people judge me? 😱
I’m sure all of you artists out there will agree that it takes a bit of creative courage!
Just over a week ago, I went to see the concert of a lifetime — Queen + Adam Lambert. Everything about the production including lights, sounds, imagery, and setlist was incredible!
Since Queen began in 1970, Freddie Mercury and the band always did things their own way. Many of their choices, like dressing up in drag for the song I Want To Break Free, were far from popular back in the day, but they stayed true to themselves as artists.
Every artist and business owner has to have the courage to break free sooner or later in order to be authentic and memorable.
Creative courage requires thick skin
How can I put this nicely? As a business owner, you’re gonna have to deal with all kinds of shit. It goes with the territory!
It helped me early on to realize that I would never please everyone, and neither will you!
Although most folks are fine, you’ll encounter some that are just plain nasty or nuts — who love to stir the pot and rile everyone else up. Everyone is a critic and your business or creative work will not be immune.
Learn to take it with a grain of salt! Keep a sense of humor and develop a thick skin.
Take a listen to this powerful wisdom from Electronic music artist Eastern Odyssey. I LOVE their words:
“Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact, and that is – everything around you that you call life, was made up by people that were no smarter than you.”
Get inspired to create
Maybe you need a little creative courage boost, so here are a few tips to help you get inspired:
- Read a classic. Have you heard of Julia Cameron? Google her! She wrote The Artist’s Way, a guidebook on creative self-discovery. Really good stuff! Keep detailed notes, then one day you’ll have a super entertaining throwback on your life.
- Create a habit. A regular customer recently recommended The Creative Habit: Learn it and Use it for Life by Twyla Tharp. It comes with all kinds of practical exercises to move you toward action.
- Expose yourself… to something new! I recently heard about 18-year-old YouTuber Emma Chamberlain. I was intrigued, so I watched a few of her videos. She’s super sassy and hilarious, but also a skilled video editor. Even if you’re not into her humor, she gets points for authenticity. By exposing yourself to different art forms, you open up to creative crossover.
- Get over perfectionism. “Done is better than perfect”, so the saying goes. Wanting things to be perfect is a crippling, fear-based obsession. Start saying NO to perfect! What is one thing you can be fine with doing imperfectly today?
- Try something new. Challenge yourself each week so you don’t get stuck in a rut or stop growing. It doesn’t have to be earth-shattering yo! Yesterday, this flip flops & sneakers girl bought a pair of fancy wedge heels 👡and this week I’m going to wear them and see where we land… hopefully not in a face plant! 😂
What are your secrets for mustering creative courage? Let me know in the comments.
Wishing you a creative week!