I love listening to podcasts or Youtube videos while I workout or clean or bake. Last week I listened to a couple interesting interviews with Seth Godin, author of several best selling books including The Practice and This Is Marketing. The following snapshot from his blog perfectly explains what his recent book, The Practice, is about and his take on creativity.
So, if it’s a choice, how do we access it? Below are some main points I pulled from two talks which you can find here and here. Scroll through and read them all or find a few that may inspire you today and come back when you need more!
“There’s no such thing as being blocked. Being creative is a choice. Writer’s block is a fear of bad writing. Fear of bad writing on the way to the good writing. If you have enough bad writing some good is going to slip thru! Writer’s block is just a myth then releases its hold on you. Don’t look for external validation, you know that writing and bicycling are in the same category. You just do it, you might not do it well yet but only way to do that is to begin.”
“Jealousy and greed eliminate all your joy.”
“The path forward is about curiosity, generosity, and connection. These are the 3 foundations of art. Art is a tool that gives us the ability to make things better and to create something new on behalf of those who will use it to create the next thing. Human connection is exponential, it scales as we create it, weaving together culture and possibility where none used to exist.”
“Be a meaningful specific rather than a wandering generality”
“Nobody wakes up and gets talkers block. So don’t worry, if you haven’t run out of things to say yet.” Write like you talk!
“Go right to the edge, grow wings on the way down. It’s the only way we’re going to learn to fly. There is no way to success except failure. If failure is not an option then neither is success. Fail again and again until you figure out how it works.”
“Don’t wait for someone to do it, it’s always too soon. Go and be first. It’s impossible to be ready cause to be ready is to be sure.”
“Fear isnt the opposite of creativity, creativity is the opposite of fear.”
“What I am arguing for here is not perfection, I’m just saying that the best way to do the work we want to do is to have a practice and to show up and do the work regardless of how the world around us and we are feeling.” (talks about surgeon who might tell patient i’m just a little down today i had a fight with my wife – etc, you will just want to find someone else!)
“We can define who we are by what we do, if you write, you’re a writer, if you wait for perfect you’re hiding, one more way to stay off the hook. On the other hand if you say i have a practice on the regular (and you can measure it any way you want it doesn’t have to be the most perfect thing), you’re taking the negotiation away, lightening the cognitive road. Example: tomorrow there will be a blog post on my blog, not because it’s the best one i ever wrote but cause it’s tomorrow. And So i don’t have to have a conversation with myself i made the decision 20 years ago, there’s going to be a blog post on my blog tomorrow. And once you make the decision it becomes who you are and once it’s who you are then you get to do the natural expression of that.”
“Confidence isn’t the same as trusting the process. Example: students asking teacher if this will be on the test or not. This attachment to the outcome paralyzes us because if we’re not sure if it’s going to work then we don’t want to do it. So we say show me it will work prove to me this is the way it is then i will do it. Which is why so many people on social media are copying others. The alternative is to say, you know what, this is work worth doing even if it doesn’t work, it’s work worth doing because the process of me doing it the way i feel doing it the effort of doing it the chance that it could touch someone else all of those things make it worth it and if it doesn’t work i’m still glad i did it. Confidence is being sure it’s going to work . But if you’re leading or making art you can’t be sure its going to work because you’re leading or making art. So the paradox is you’ve got to do work you’re not confident of. How? By trusting yourself that you have a process. It might not work but what you’re doing will work better than the alternative.”
“It feels better to speak up on behalf of someone us than for ourselves. For me the answer is, is someone going to benefit from this, get leveled up or get touched from this. Because if you don’t bring this to them, then you’re stealing. So the challenge is how do we act like a lifeguard. The lifeguard doesn’t jump in to be a hero the lifeguard jumps in to save someone because they need saving and we need the people listening to show up to make things better. It’s not about a race for credit it’s about a race for contribution.”
“Be authentic. We can only deliver what our audience needs by being consistent by creating our inauthentic intentional crafted art in a way that delivers an authentic experience to our audience as they consume it.”
Well, that was a lot but there were so many good nuggets of wisdom in there. 😉 I hope you enjoyed reading and that it gave you a little spark to go and do something you’ve been wanting to do but afraid to do out of fear of it not being good enough. Let me know what you think in the comments below!