the fear of all humble creatives
My husband was terrified. You know that kind of terror which becomes physical: sick to the stomach, stabbing in the heart-muscles. Facing an unpleasant personal crisis moment within himself over his work, he was stressing - terrified - agonized - over his responsibility to create great work for clients who were depending on him. He felt dissatisfaction in everything he produced and felt he was failing - failing his clients, failing himself, failing.
Dark ten-thirty, I was half-asleep and trying to grasp everything he was saying with the appropriate level of visual appreciation and concern, and all I could think was how exactly alike our feelings were regarding our separate modes of creativity. I can hardly go a week without a crashing fear that I am completely kidding myself and I will never reach that vague, perfect pinnacle of writing that I strive for. I'm terrified of letting my followers down, of ruining an ending with a flat fall, of flubbing characters, of writing a stupid plot that isn't worth the paper it's printed on. I know that fear. I've felt that terror. I live with it every day.
I'm a cut-the-Gordian-knot kind of person. I especially don't have the energy to beat around the bush at dark ten-thirty, so I asked him the dividing question which keeps my own head above the water and keeps me swimming.
"Does it make you want to quit?"
"No," he admitted after a pause; then, still more grudgingly, "...it makes me want to try harder."
YOU CAN'T FAKE PASSION
I share this story because it highlights the core engine of creativity. No matter how bad you may be at a given thing at a given time in your life, no matter how many setbacks you endure or how loudly your brain says, "You're really flubbing this + it's embarrassing!", your passion will keep you going. Genius lights the way, but passion drives blind. Logic says, "this is crap!" but passion says, "we can't give up!"
Passion is love through turmoil. Passion is grit in the face of personal + external opposition. Our passion for something is part of who we ARE and can't be taken away. It keep us going - harder, faster, bolder, tougher, humming, shining, beautiful. Passion is indispensable. Passion is a communicable attribute of our God.
THE 3 EXPRESSIONS OF MY PASSION
1. I believe in myself + my work. | I'm not going to save the best point for last because this one is crucial. Beneath the layers of neurosis, self-doubt, + fear, //I BELIEVE.// I believe my work is / can be GOOD. I believe it can be GREAT. I believe my voice is worth hearing. I believe my passion matters. I believe my passion is strong enough to carry me forward.
2. Personal insufficiency makes me want to try harder. | This is what passion does: it crawls over obstacles, it moves mountains, it throws them into the sea, it lifts valleys + splits oceans. It commits me. It's my core. It's a tiger + a team of horses + a fire + a pole-star. I can't - I won't - hide it: it makes me enormous + gives my work life.
3. "I love that about your posts because they're honest + they bleed you...it's encouraging + just refreshing." | Passion hushes up the doubt that would hold me back. In a way it is both armour and a vulnerability. It's a driving offensive maneuver that breaks through the surprised blogging ranks and (I've discovered) shakes people up with a show of what they call "sincerity" + "honesty." It also unabashedly shows people who I really am because passion is at my centre, and showing my passion means revealing ME.
confidence /// tenacity /// genius
These natural offshoot sparks of passion don't eliminate doubt, but they can overwhelmingly conquer when given their head. So whatever your passion is, wherever you are, whoever you are, remember these three things and //keep going//. Passion is powerful. It even saved mankind.
images via pinterest