Creativity and inhibitions: a deadly combination

When thinking about creativity and inhibitions, a couple of questions come to mind:

What blocks creativity? Why is it that, at times, we feel that we can’t use our full creative potential?

We are going through some difficult times in all aspects of our lives. Creativity is one key factor that can help us figure out our next steps in what we’re trying to solve. However, if we’re mentally blocked, it’s going to be challenging to move forward.

I recently came across an article on the top 10 common factors that inhibit creativity. This is an eye-opening read, and it caused such impact on me that I decided to expand on three of them:

  • Laziness
  • Fear of failure
  • Keeping your work to yourself

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Personal fears: An exercise for self-reflection

I want to write openly about my personal fears. Since fear can be used as a GPS, I think it’d be a good exercise to see where it’s leading me. On the other hand, it’s difficult to be vulnerable in public. It’s a common belief that the more you hide your flaws, the stronger you will look.

It’s time to get rid of that belief and let my authentic self show. I’ll start by naming three of my greatest fears while elaborating a bit on them. I’ll mention where they come from and how I can overcome them.

Let’s see how this goes.

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Routines of successful people: to try or not to try

Type the phrase “routines of successful people” on Google, and you will get hundreds of articles that tell you how to organize your life in a way that will make you more productive.

While those articles are appealing, and some of them can be actually inspiring, the truth is that every individual in this world operates in a different mode. What works for “the successful” may not work for those who are trying to develop better habits.

Here’s a few thoughts on focusing on what works for you rather than following steps that you might not be willing to even try.

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On Patience

I love the quotes that I find on Twitter. I’ve shared a few here before, and today, it’s not going to be the exception.

This is the first time that I think of patience as a form of action. To me, it has always meant sitting still while waiting for life to happen. When I read that quote, my perception suddenly changed. It didn’t take long to convince myself that patience is motion.

In my student years in journalism school, I remember interviewing a young lady about entrepreneurship and making a living out of art. One idea that stood out for me in that conversation was taking “baby steps” when working on any creative craft. Great accomplishments are the sum of all efforts made one day at a time. It’s the repetition of small actions on a daily basis.

I also thought of the time I took swimming lessons. The instructor quickly sensed how frustrated I got when I tried different strokes and my body didn’t respond the way I wanted it to. His words still resonate even today: “you have to be patient with yourself.” It’s a matter of changing a mindset or breaking a habit, and these actions need constant repetition; one day at a time.

So when someone says “be patient”, that actually means “work on something and go step by step. You’ll get there.”

How do you view patience?

Thoughts on prolific writing

I recently read an article about becoming a prolific writer. The key is pretty nice and simple: Write a lot.

It’s a simple truth and couldn’t agree more with it. It makes sense to write as much as possible to offer multiple readings in multiple formats. One of the first forms of writing that comes to mind is blogging. While you’re working on your manuscript, your online presence should stay active in some way. Posting a couple of entries per week (or per month) keeps exercising your writing skills.

If you have an audience that enjoy hearing from you and your work, it’s also a way of keeping them informed on your most recent activities. On the other hand, if your blog is not popular yet, it’s always a good idea to start building an audience and tell them about your writing.

That article also reminded me of one of the many ideas that Joanna Penn has shared around multiple streams of income. It’s not enough to publish one book and hope it sells millions of copies. It’s working on new ideas to keep producing more books.

Consider different genres and different formats like audio books, workbooks, and ebooks. The more you create, the more sources of income you’ll generate.

What do you think?

Working one day at a time, and writing one word at a time

Some people are able to write 10,000 words a day. I’ve always thought that’s impressive, and I’m really happy they can reach a high word count. At the same time, I also think it’s fair to say that this goal is not for everyone. That’s okay.

Each writer sets different standards and, therefore, different goals.

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What mom taught me about writing

Today my mom is coming to visit me. She’s staying for three weeks, and I’m writing these lines as she’s making her way through the airport in Vancouver. Then, she will fly to Calgary.

I’m getting married next month. Her presence, support and guidance means the world to me. There’s a lot of things going on in my life right now. Big and exciting changes are coming my way, and I wouldn’t be able to get through them without her.

I’m thinking this is also the case for writing. If it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t be motivated to be a writer. Here’s four tips she gave me to get started.

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