Tuesday, November 15, 2011

How to Crush Your Creativity: Worry

Worry might be described as a single-minded focus on negative possibilities. It doesn't have the strong physiological intensity of fear. Worry's effects more gradually—but just as surely—erode the creative urge.

Start with this scenario. You get a really exciting idea that you'd love to develop.

Worry that someone has already thought of it.
Worry that you won't be able to keep your inspiration high for the idea.
Worry that it isn't as good as you thought it was.

Next, work on your project, and don't tell anyone about it, because you worry that they'll laugh at you. Even if they don't laugh, they will think loud thoughts that would destroy you if you heard them, so you imagine them instead.

Complete your project and worry that no one will like it. Again, tell no one and do nothing to unveil it or in any way bring it to anyone's attention.

Worry is really very creative. You may not like what your imagination is delivering, but there's no questioning that it's at work. If you can pause in the midst of one of the humiliating scenarios you're concocting, you'll recognize this. If you're a writer, you have material for an enlightening expose of a character. If you paint, you can describe in color and form the complex emotions that worry arouses.

No matter who you are, once you've managed to detach from your emotional turmoil to realize that you are the artist who's created it, you can begin to make the necessary shift. Now that you've proven your ability to create through this nightmare scenario, realize that by changing your intention to experience positive energy, you can imagine the circumstances and details to do so.

Challenge: Practice changing your mental story.

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