50 Shades of Creativity

creativity stages

The 50 emotions you feel as you create.

As a creative entrepreneur, I go through this process. And every time, I ask myself: why is it so hard to be creative? Is it the same for you, too? Please tell me I'm not the only one!




You are have an idea! A solid, quickly-taking shape in your mind, idea. You scramble to gather a pencil and pen to sketch out your plan.




Inspiration is flowing from your pen to your paper. You. Have. Got. This.




This will be a work for the ages. People will study this. Be brought to tears. Maybe chuckle at your wit and soulfulness. “That bastard actually did it,” they’ll say. “She actually did it!’.




Of course, people will want to interview you about your work. I mean, of course. When Terry Gross of Fresh Air asks what your project, you’ll say, “it’s all there, Terry. I put it ALL there.”




It’s just a matter of beginning. So you sit down to actually do the work.




30 minutes in, and it’s going great.




This isn’t looking like I thought it would look.




Why isn’t this working? It was so clear in my mind, but my execution is muddled.




Well, maybe it’s not so bad.



Yes. It is that bad.




Why did you think you could do this? I mean, really. You? Do this? No.


Fed up


You walk away. You rethink the method. The project. Your life.




You can’t do this, so don’t try.




Why doesn’t anyone tell you just how hard it is to just sit down and do the work?




And what does it matter, anyway? No one’s going to like it anyway. Time to surf the internet.




Damn. There’s some talented people out there. Really talented. By that I mean, more talented than me, so why even try?




Why did I even think I live in the same stratosphere as those geniuses, let alone the same hemisphere? We don’t breathe the same air.




No one in the history of time feels as bad as I do right now, and yes I’m including EVERYONE, so don’t look at me that way because I know it sounds bad to say it out loud but it’s the truth so just stop judging me.




Why didn’t I work harder in chemistry class? I could have been a chemist. I would make a pretty good chemist.




No one even really likes my stuff anyway. The people who said they liked it were lying.




Those liars! How dare they lift my hopes, when I’m clearly a novice at best.




When I think about all the work I’ve shown to people...the work I was so proud of at the time. It’s all crap. I’m crap.




My whole portfolio is junk...inferior, subpar, try-hard junk.




My brain hurts in a dull, heavy way. I’m just gonna go to bed.




I’m the only person to feel like this. Why is it so much harder for me?




Ok. This is my life. I’m the person who tried, and couldn’t do it. There are worse things.




I’ll order a book on chemistry. Maybe it’s not too late to be a chemist.




I can’t even be a chemist. Damn.




I’ll just go to bed, turn on Netflix, and watch every single episode of Family Guy in a row.




I’ve watched all of Family Guy, Futurama, both Sharknados, Law and Order SVU, and The Wire and The Blair Witch Project. Even Netflix is incredulous, asking me if I’m still watching. Time to rejoin the human race.




I’ve got nothing else to do. Eh, I guess I’ll look over this project again.




Well, this might not be so bad. It just needs a little nudge here and there.




Maybe just an hour or two, just to get my sea legs back.




Hey, now. I ‘m in the groove. If I don’t overthink it, it might be ok.




This isn’t a total waste of space. It might actually turn out to be somewhat good.




I’m in the zone. I love being in the zone. The zone is good place to be.




I’m going to finish, and I’m going to love it. No one else may love it, but I do. And that’s what matters.




Don’t call me, text me, message me, knock on my door, send me a carrier pigeon, send up a flare, or knock on my door. I’m working.




This is work, but feels like yoga.




Creating and making are the house I live in, and the only place I want to be.




I’m going to try a few new things and see how it works out. It’s ok if it doesn’t, but I just have to see for myself.




Oh, wow, this is cool. Just. Wow.




Coming towards the end...how do I recognize when it’s finished? Will I go one too far? Or not far enough.




I’m not sure if it’s totally finished, but I’m happy with my stopping point.




Taking a big step back, I look everything over. Did I miss anything? Is there something there I hadn’t intended? Does it work?




Walking away to take an even bigger step back. Revisit a few days, weeks, months sometimes years later. Look with fresh eyes. Breathe everything in and re-evaluate.




I don’t mind signing my name to it.




Maybe someone will ‘get’ it. He or she will connect to it some way...even if it’s not the way I intended.




Open and receptive to my next project. I’m ready to create again.