Anytime we create something and release it into the world, we can’t help but get attached to what it means for us. We get stars in our eyes. We see the potential, not the reality. After all, these ideas are our creative brainchildren. Our babies. Naturally, we’re a little attached.
The disappointing part is, we soon discover that most people aren’t as interested in our work as we want them to be. In fact, most people aren’t even thinking about our work enough to judge it in the first place. And that hurts our feelings. It dampens our enthusiasm. Even our ego crosses its arms like a spoiled child and pouts, hey, why aren’t you more impressed with me?
But this is the reality of the end of the creative process. Once we ship, once our work is living in the real world, we officially surrender any and all control over how that work is received. And despite our most protective instincts to coddle our creative brainchildren, we learn to practice a healthy sense of detachment. We learn not to over identify with our art.
Yes, we love our work and take pride in the process, but we don’t get too precious about anything we create.
Yes, we believe in the value of our product, but we can’t treat each piece of our art as fragile vase that’s going to shatter.
Otherwise our spirits will shatter right along with them.
All we can do is give ourselves permission to start on the next one. Immediately. Nothing personal to the project we just finished, but we’re professionals and professionals never stop creating.
Krishna famously said that we have a right to our labor, but not to the fruits of our labor. His words remind us that what we create isn’t as important as how the experience of creating it changes us for the better. Because it doesn’t matter if we’re doing something right or wrong, good or bad, it only matters if doing it moves in a direction that makes sense.
How do you inoculate yourself against the devastation of expectation?
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That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.
Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.
Now booking for 2015-2016.
Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!