Lately, there has been a lot going on in my life that I feel like my creativity has become stunted. I begin to question, what do I do next? Will my next idea be "good enough"? What if my future ideas won't be as good as my past ones? When the questions start, it opens up a possibility for me to go down a slippery slope. Once upon a time, I would slide down that slope and have it define my worth, and then I would tell myself that I wasn't good enough. I can recognize that these questions and what they are trying to do and they are trying to scare me. I won't succumb to that because that would end up silencing me creatively. I have to shake those thoughts and not listen to them. Does this change the fact that I am still at a creative block? Well, no but, it changes how I would approach it.
When I used to be stuck creatively I would sit and try to come up with a great idea and force myself to be creative. In reality, that is very rarely fruitful and doesn't provide for the best ideas. After reading a lot of literature over this past year I learned that it doesn't matter the quality of what I create sometimes. All that matters is that I am doing the action. Right now, I am doing the action of creating, writing, thinking, and working. Is this my best? Probably not. Even if it isn't my best, it has the potential to be. It has the potential to be because the alternative is nothing. If I don't try, I am letting myself down because for me being creative is a major part of my identity. If I don't try, I am losing myself. So, I am committed to doing the action regardless of the quality.
The quality of the content I produce is important but the poor quality content can also further my career in the entertainment industry. You can't have good quality content without having bad quality content. Sometimes it is just important to create bad work. It is important to go into whatever you are creating with the intention that this doesn't have to be good. From there, good work can be created because it can generate a creative spark. This thought has been important to me for the past year since I started creating. This idea was actually sparked by Austin Kleon when he discussed the importance of play in his book, Keep Going: 10 Ways to Stay Creative in Good Times and Bad. Then most recently, I read Play: How it Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul by Stuart Brown which further reiterated the importance of play. Play sparks creativity and helps bring out new ideas. When I "play" it could be me building a fort, filming a YouTube video, dancing while running, or just finding ways to have fun. The quality is sometimes terrible and cringey but, it was fun. The bad quality content helps in the creation of better content.
So I might be stuck creatively but, that doesn't mean I am going to stop. One week my YouTube video or blog post might be a snooze fest but, at least it is a fest. To me, a snooze fest is better than no fest at all because at least I created a festival of some sort. I am still committed to creating content every week regardless of how good it is. For all I know the idea that is utter garbage can be the idea that people truly love. Let's keep on creating and working through these creative blocks.
*My work might be sour, sweet, cringey, fun, or a snooze fest. At least I am having fun. (Alex eating a lime, Aug. 2013)