Creative Mondays #005 – Keep you plans secret.
Keep your creative plans secret until they are completed.
This is a tough one and, though I believe in it and will explain why, it is a hard one for me to do.
The main reason you should attempt to keep your creative plans secret until you have completed them is because if you tell them to other people they will, no matter how well meaning they are, offer their opinion on your plans. You will get no end to unsolicited feedback on your idea.
“That’s a great idea!” they’ll inevitably start, but then they’ll continue, “You know what you should do…”
Now if the sentence above is coming from someone you admire or respect or whom you are asking for advice, that’s fine. If you admire or respect them or asked for their advice, that’s great, listen to their suggestions. Remember, though, these are suggestions.
The focus of this entry is about telling friends, peers, family about your plans. These folks like (love) and respect you and they think they’ll be helping you out by offering their advice. What happens then is that once you begin creating your art, the ‘advice’ that these people starts creeping into your head and you begin second guessing yourself.
“Maybe so and so was right. Maybe I should do it their way instead of the way I had planned.”
This becomes dangerous because suddenly the your art is not your own. It has become a community project. Nothing against community projects, they are great, but this is YOUR art project.
This is the number one reason I try to keep my ideas to myself. Notice I say try. It’s extremely hard to do. The main reason for blabbing is I get really excited about an idea and I want to share it with the world. I need to realize that it’ll be much better (and save me much second guessing) if I tell people after it’s done. Or better yet, show them. Writers often say ‘show don’t tell.’ I think that’s a great bit of advice that all artists can take about their own work. Get it done and THEN show somebody.
Another reason to keep mum about a project is because sometimes I talk so much about a project I never really get around to actually working on it. I know it sounds weird, but there’s something in the brain that will trick you into thinking, “Well I’ve talked about it so much, I must have done it.” When, in actuality, you haven’t done anything. Almost as if a little bit of the creative desire in you escapes each time you say something about it until you have no creative desire left to work on the project.
Finally, there is the thought of sharing your ideas with others before you do them and then someone steals your idea. I don’t think this happens as much as people are afraid it does, but it does happen, so it’s another good reason to just keep quiet about your project.
As artists, our main drive in life is to create something and then share it with the world. We should just think twice about sharing them before we’ve even begun creating them.
Do you fall into the same pitfalls as me and blab your project to everyone around you? Or do you thrive on getting other people’s opinions about your project? Let me know in the comments below.
Health, Decide & Love in 2014.
It is the start of a new year and so time to pick three new words I’m going to attempt to focus on in my life for 2014. This is a practice I picked up from C.C. Chapman‘s book Amazing Things WIll Happen.
Last year my three words were Create. Rebuild. Live. I would say out of those three I hit Create the hardest. I certainly was not wanting for creative projects to occupy my time. The Live focus also got some attention this year, but not nearly enough as I would have liked. The Rebuild portion was a hard one. Rebuilding relationships often takes more than one person and, despite efforts, I was not always successful in this arena, though small steps were made.
But those were the words for last year, it’s time to focus on the words for this year.
Health. A lot of people make the old Heath resolution in January and it falls by the wayside weeks later. Back in October, I focused on health for 20 days and it worked. Not only that, it was easy. But then I went to Toronto and instead of keeping going it all flew out the window. Any gains I made were lost. And then some.
So for 2014 I have a goal of taking better care of my self. Yes, this includes eating right, exercising and losing weight, but it means more than just that.