Have you dreamt about writing a book?
Launching a course?
I have thought of all these.
And, have done three of these four.
But I have thought about doing a lot more and did not do all that I thought about.
Let me tell you why.
You see when it comes to creating something it comes to three things.
- Having the skill
- Getting over the fear of failing
- Making time to do what you want to do
Skill part is easy because there is so much around to learn and build your skills.
Getting over the fear to fail and making time for learning, doing and making is tough.
In the past several years I have learned a lot about it. There are times where I fell off the wagon. I keep watching myself. Whenever it happens, I acknowledge it and commit to learn and create again.
Before I share my learning as a creator, I want you to think about why to choose creation over consumption.
Creation Over Consumption! Why?
We are all consumers.
Consumption is ok until a limit.
Until it becomes too much. Until it overloads our bodies with extra calories and brain with junk information that we don’t need.
To move forward and stand apart we need to create. We also need to create often to stay relevant and survive.
My Learnings About Being A Creator
Some of these have worked for me. I am sharing with hopes that you will pick some of these ideas and use them in your quest to become a creator.
#1 FIRST GET OVER THE FEAR OF FAILING
Fear of failing will keep you from creating more than anything else. Tackle this first. The only way is to start and show up.
#2 THEN MAKE TIME TO CREATE EVERY DAY
Better if you decide in advance what you want to create next day.
#3 DO A LITTLE EVERY DAY
It does not matter if you set only 5 minutes to create every day. Once you set this small quota stick to it. In the beginning, I’ll suggest not skipping your creation ritual even for a day. For some reason, if you have to skip, don’t skip for more than one day. Because if you don’t do anything for two days in a row it becomes easy to not do it at all. That is how most new year resolutions fail.
#4 START IN AN AREA WHERE YOU WANT TO EXCEL
That will give you focus. It can be anything. Communication, software, pottery, design, architecture, engineering, media, science, psychology, software, or business. You choose.
#5 DOCUMENT YOUR PROCESS AND PROGRESS
It helps you stay accountable. The platform you choose does not matter. Anything public will do. A blog, Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube. You choose.
#6 DON’T WORRY ABOUT WHAT PEOPLE SAY
A corollary to this is to keep your positives close. Your positives are people who encourage you and have been with you through thick and thin. Chances are your family and friends are these positives.
#7 FOLLOW OTHER MAKERS AND LEARN FROM THEM
There are many others who have done what you are trying to do. Learn from them and replicate what they make. This is very helpful in the beginning.
#8 THINK ABOUT WHAT EXCITES YOU
Do that. If you choose something that does not excite you, you’ll quit. When you choose to work on something that excites you, you have fun along the way.
#9 START WITH AN END IN MIND
Creating for the sake of creating is not worth it because there is so much to do and achieve. Align your creation with something that you want to build. A series of paintings. A book. A startup. A course. A new prototype for a product that you want to launch.
#10 WORK WITH A DEADLINE
If that deadline happens to be midnight or 7 pm everyday so be it.
#11 WATCH YOUR BODY AND MIND
Move and drink water. See if you can also stretch and meditate. It will keep you alert and allow to manage and work around distractions. Watch out for time wasting bad habits in the name of work. Such habits take us on the path of consumption when we should be creating.
#12 THINK ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF CREATION
Growth, connections, bigger body of work; and pick a reason that motivates you.
#13 CREATE SOMETHING OTHERS CAN CONSUME AND PAY FOR
Money is a good validator. Make something and ask people to pay. If people see the value they’ll pay. Key here is not to create something which is far from your current audience and what you know. Then it becomes difficult to make something that is quality and worth paying for.
#14 USE DIFFERENT DEVICES FOR CONSUMPTION AND CREATION
My work device is different from my entertainment device. By doing this, I am not tempted to watch entertaining videos on my work device. It is helpful. I still consume endless information in the name of learning on my work device. Hope I can change this. Recently I have tried using RescueTime to get a sense of where my time is going when I am on my work device.
#15 THINK ABOUT THE IMPACT AND MAKE SOMETHING USEFUL
This will give you a sense of fulfillment.
#16 PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR ENVIRONMENT
I have observed that whenever I sit at my work table at home at a particular time I am most productive. I don’t always sit there to create but if I get into a rut I can always go and sit at that table.
#17 SURROUND YOURSELF WITH MAKERS
You are an average of five people you spend the most time with. Find your five. Be friends with them. Exchange thoughts, ask questions and keep each other motivated.
Does it excite you to create something that you have been holding on for long?
What will you create?