It’s been more than a hot minute since I’ve showed up in your inbox or on your screen.
When I first started publishing my words, I made a huge promise that I wasn’t going to flake out and ghost this corner of the internet. But life has a way of interrupting and tossing aside our best laid plans.
A break that was intended to only last a week turned into two. Two weeks turned into two months, and soon, I wasn’t even thinking about writing for myself anymore.
I love to think of every single one of you as my friends. People that I’d love to have coffee with, shake off the façade, and just talk about anything and everything. So, for new and old readers, it’s only fair I give you a brief life update.
In the time I’ve been away, I’ve become one half of a couple and am still learning to get used to the title of ‘girlfriend.’
I interned at an amazing creative agency which solidified my desire to continue working in the creative world.
I learnt how to be a better copywriter and manage a group of creative freelancers.
But in all the hustle and excitement, my creativity was suffering.
As much as I love writing about how we should kick fear’s butt or just keep going, I find it incredibly hard to listen to my own advice.
Every time I sat in front of a blank page and tried to write, fear would wrap his icy grip around my heart and tell me to stop.
Mental blocks would come crashing down any time I tried to string two sentences together.
I stressed that people found it annoying whenever I spoke about my writing on social media.
I started to feel ‘silly’ whenever I thought about prospective employers or clients reading my work.
I’m willing to bet that maybe you’ve felt this way too. Like, nothing you do will ever be as good as you want it to be. Like, maybe it’s pointless to keep sharing your craft with the world. Or perhaps your voice isn’t strong enough to cut through the noise.
I saw one of my favourite artist-writers in the flesh six months ago.
My creativity was at an all-time low. I could barely stand to look at a blank page or even think about what to write next, let alone show up on a weekly basis.
So, when this Brooklyn artist posted that he was giving a talk on my side of the world, I bucked up, scraped together the money for admission, and went off in pursuit of inspiration.
His talk was even better than I’d imagined.
Beneath his inappropriate jokes and crazy anecdotes, was a guy who truly understood what it meant to create. That it wasn’t necessarily about validation or being the best but doing it because we can. In this day and age, we have the power to express ourselves however we want and we shouldn’t waste it.
I realised I had been creating content solely to please other people and live up to their expectations of me. I’d let the fear of other people’s opinions dictate how I was writing and whether I chose to share it with the world. Playing by other people’s rules may push you forward in the short term. But doing things for yourself because it truly brings you joy? Now that’s the golden ticket, babe.
After 90 minutes of dropping convicting truth bombs, the artist ended with this: “You are a tool, so you better get to work.”
It slammed into me and reminded me that I had been gifted with this platform. I’d been gifted an affinity to string words together and tell stories in a way only I can. And what a pity it would be if I let it all stay buried under my fear and insecurity of not being good enough.
So now, I’m passing this pep talk onto you, sweet reader.
You can either worry about what people are saying, or you can put your head down and create anyway.
You can either stress about the lack of inspiration, or you can try to find it in the people you meet, the movies you watch, or the books you read.
You can either be anxious about the fact that not everyone will like the things you create, or you can realise that there’s a unique group of people who need your talents.
You are a tool, so focus on your craft and just keep on going.
You never know who needs your gifts…
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