The right mood for creation
 
This week I was feeling sad and stuck. I didn't do many things I had commited to. All I did was listening to a video and taking notes, but that was only a small part of a process of reaching out to a potential client.

Besides that, I had work to do for 4 clients. Yes, I was excited about getting the clients; but delivering is a whole other story.

Today, Friday, nothing happened until about 3pm. I thought that was it - this week I attended the appointments I had, I took care of myself cooking and exercising, but my solo work just didn't happen. I gave up.

I went to a coffee shop and forced myself to make at least one 30-minute focused work session. At least it would be some work. I started to draw. It was hard, slow, I wasn't enjoying the process nor the results. The whole time I was thinking "I can't show THIS to the client. This isn't good, it isn't inspired, it's crap."

Little by little, it started to shift... I stopped judging the drawings that much, I started seeing them as the first drafts of something else, and it became a little easier. In 2 30-min sessions, I finished the work for the first client, still not liking it.

In the third session, I went for some marketing videos, the ones I send to companies to show my work. I was (I still am) scared as hell but I managed to make a few. I'm pretty sure they aren't good enough either.

I had enough coffee and went home. Now the stubbornness kicked it - I would see it to the end. After 3 more sessions, I have finished all I had to make for all the other clients too.

It should feel like a win, but it only feels like "Now I'm free, I can let these damned things here and go do something else, regardless of the quality of it."

The lesson for me is that this was one of the first times I created something without feeling good about it. And I was able to create it anyway. Is it any good? I don't know, I am not supposed to be the judge of my work. I only start the process, the real creation happens in the interaction with people. I don't need to retreat into my cave until something perfect comes up. I can, and I must, show works in progress so the clients, and other people, become part of the process that is as much theirs as mine.

Real creation isn't about showing something perfect. It's about starting a conversation. It's about creating the possibility of relationships. That's all. 

I'm not supposed to show them something that will change their lives, just share something interesting and true.


I'd love to know about you. How do you treat your creative process? Do you need to be in a certain mood? 


Thank you for reading! :)