I am going to make a potentially challenging statement:
Maybe everything we create is not meant to be shared.
I know, mind blown—right?
Where did we get this idea that just because we think or feel or generate something, it must be shared with others?
Since we first smiled or scribbled a crayon picture as little human beings, we’ve desperately sought to share our creations with others—for approval, for affirmation,
to make sure we do, in fact, belong.
If others like what we create, it does not alter what we have created. It does not validate it or prove it is good. If others hate what we create, it does not alter what we have created. It does not invalidate it or prove it is bad.
It just means that someone has an opinion about what we’ve created.
There is an idea today about the importance of building the career of an artist. Of building a platform. And these are reasonable ideas to attain reasonable goals: sales, popularity, and to build a community of like-minded people.
But it doesn’t mean what we create is great, or even good.
Recently, I read a new book by an established author. The novel hit all the trend buttons prevalent in our best sellers right now, but I could tell that the author herself was bored with her own writing. Even though she had obviously worked very hard at her writing craft and written very well, built an excellent online presence, and networked beautifully, she lost what she loves about her own creations in process.
If you don’t like what you’ve created, it really doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks.
So if nothing else, create for yourself first.
Work with others to learn and grow–and of course, practice, practice, practice to hone your skills and your craft.
never forget that in everything you create, whether with words or crayons or music or avatars,
even as you create yourself
you are your first critic and admirer.
Don’t forget to take pleasure in your own process of creation.