Friday, February 19, 2016

Not the thing.

Last night, I finished "Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear" by Elizabeth Gilbert. I have a bunch of takeaways from this, but here's what I want to put into words today:

Fierce trust demands that you put forth the work anyhow, because fierce trust knows that the outcome does not matter.
The outcome cannot matter.
Fierce trust asks you to stand strong within this truth: "You are worthy, dear one, regardless of the outcome. You will keep making your work, regardless of the outcome. You will keep sharing your work, regardless of the outcome. You were born to create, regardless of the outcome. You will never lose trust in the creative process, even when you don't understand the outcome."

This space isn't about writing great things. It's just about writing. And sometimes, things are unexpectedly well-received, and I see 300 hits on one post, and then sometimes, things I think are going to be great receive lukewarm responses, or fantastic responses but from only a few people. It doesn't matter. I mean, it does. The encouragement helps. The praise helps. The "hey, I feel this way too!" helps. But I can't let it matter, because what matters is that I'm showing up and conditioning my brain to work like a writer again. That's all that matters.

This reminded me of a bit from Amy Poehler's book "Yes, Please":

You have to care about your work but not the result. You have to care about how good you are and how good you feel, but not about how good people think you are or how good people think you look.

You do it because the doing of it is the thing. The doing is the thing. The talking and worrying and thinking is not the thing.

On cue, I got a text from someone this afternoon gauging my interest in a project that would stretch my creative abilities and give me an opportunity to maybe do something I haven't done before but have wanted to do forever.  I don't know if this will pan out, but I said yes, I'm interested, despite my inner critic saying, "Pssshh.... no way." Because, I thought, why say no when you can say yes?

As I was hunting for the above quotes from "Yes, Please," I found this one that I had forgotten:
Because what else are we going to do? Say no? Say no to an opportunity that may be slightly out of our comfort zone? Quiet our voice because we are worried it is not perfect? I believe great people do things before they are ready. 

So: less worrying. More doing. On it.

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