Everything that exists in this world started as a thought. The device you're reading this on, the words on this page, the clothes you're wearing, your grandma's signature dish, everything! Those things would never have existed had they stayed as a thought or an idea. What's needed to take something from your mind and into the world is what I call creative flow. Creative flow is the action you allow to move an idea from its intangible form in the mental space into the physical world where it can be seen, heard, consumed, or engaged. However, making a thought or an idea into reality can feel uncomfortable. We might feel insecure or that we're not good enough (That's your Gremlin. Find out more about your Gremlin in my free eBook).
But what can you do if you find yourself stuck in your head?
Ask yourself if you are comparing yourself to someone else. Why? Because comparison is a common cause of inaction. Perhaps you're comparing yourself to someone who has already done what you are attempting to do? That could be making you feel insecure and bringing up your Gremlin's message, and in turn, keeping you stuck in your head.
Beware of perfectionism. Perfectionism is the killer of progress. Do you find yourself saying things like:
"I'm just getting my thoughts sorted out."
"I'm lining up my ducks."
"I need to get to get it just right."
If so, your idea of perfection may be keeping you stuck in your head.
So what's the solution to getting out of your head? Start producing, start sharing, start speaking, start posting, start writing, start networking. Whatever you want to do that has been stuck in your head until now, just do it!
But what if my work isn't perfect?
Start putting it out there because your work will never be perfect.
But what if someone else is already doing it and it's better than my work?
Start putting it out there because there's always going to be someone that does similar work. And "better" differs from person to e might find your work better than the person you think is better than you. Consider this. How many pizzerias are there around your city? I bet you have a favorite pizzeria. Why is that one your favorite and not all of the others? Is there someone that disagrees with you and thinks another pizzeria is better? I bet even though they believe someone else is better, the pizzeria you like still has a lot of business anyway. How much competition do you think they have, yet they still thrive?
So, let's get you moving forward. We've already established that it's probably not going to be the best work at first. Someone else has probably already done it. And it's impossible to get it perfect. Great! Now the final part is to understand the process of your creative flow.
Creativity in action, like water, is said to flow. However, if you've ever tried getting water from a faucet that hasn't been used in a while or never used at all, you know that there are stages of flow before you get to the good stuff. Let's explore this.
Stage 1- Activating An Underused or Unused System
Faucet: When you first turn on a faucet that has not been used for a long time or has never been used before, you're going to hear a lot of strange noises, spurts, and pops before the water comes out. It can make you nervous and even a little bit scared. You might even think it's not as good a faucet as you thought it was. Maybe the internal plumbing isn't meant for this, or perhaps it's broken.
Creativity/Ideas: When you first start to create after a long time or never doing so before, it's normal to feel awkward, uncomfortable, and inconsistent. That can lead to feelings of nervousness or fear, which in turn leads to doubt and insecurity.
Stage 2: Clearing Out the Gunk
Faucet: Once the air and blocks are out of the system, the water eventually starts to flow, but the pressure is low, and the water is murky. The first water to flow from the faucet will be brown and may even have some sand and dirt that settled deep within the pipes. The water is flowing, but it's still not drinkable.
Creativity/Ideas: As you push through the initial rustiness of starting to create again or ever, there's a good chance it's not going to be your best work. Your message may be unclear, your confidence may be low, and you may feel your content is not ready to be consumed by your audience as of yet.
Stage 3: Clear and Clean
Faucet: Let it flow longer, and now you're starting to see the water is clear and clean. You can begin to taste it and confirm it's ready to be served or used in your recipes. Maybe you pick up a faint metallic taste, or perhaps it's warm. You decide to let it flow even more.
Creativity/Ideas: Your creativity and ideas are flowing now. You are more consistent and feel confident to start sharing it with others. It's much better than it was before but still needs some work.
Stage 4: Refreshing, Reinventing, and Refining
Faucet: The water is flowing from the faucet at a consistent rate, the pressure is high, the water is even clearer than it was just a few moments ago, and the water is nice and cool now. You can serve it as is, add it to a recipe confidently or reinvent the water by adding some mint, lemon, and cucumber. Maybe you decide to add a filter to clean up the water even more and to pick up the little things you didn't even notice were there?
Creativity/Ideas: Now you're in the zone. Your creativity and ideas are flowing. You have refreshing content, and you are confident in sharing it with others. At this point, you're trying out new things, different approaches, testing out new recipes, if you will. You realize that if something doesn't work, it's not a failure it's a lesson. You may even decide to work with a coach to help you identify areas where you can improve your flow even more or address blocks you didn't even realize were there.
So, if you had a hard time letting your ideas and creativity flow, don't worry. The difficulty often comes from trying to get it perfect the first time around. Just start putting pen to paper and let it flow. Clarity, confidence, and consistency will soon follow.
Now here's the amazing part, somewhere someone is looking for exactly what you have created. Somewhere someone is willing to pay you to share your passion, gift, talent, or authentic self with them. Sometimes seeing how that is even possible is difficult. But I have a coaching solution for you. I call it the "I Can Do What?!?!" Jumpstart Session. In this 90-minute jumpstart strategy and coaching session, I'll help you reveal your most marketable qualities and how people would PAY you to share them with them! Reserve your session by clicking here.
Now, what if you want to create but can't seem to get started? What if you feel destined to do great things, but you're not sure what it is or where to get started? Then my Energy Leadership Index (ELI) Assessment can be the solution you've been looking for. The ELI Assessment is a one-of-a-kind online assessment that enables people to reveal their perceptions, attitudes, behaviors, blocks, and overall leadership capabilities. This coaching solution also comes with a one hour debrief with me to go over your personalized results and report. Click here to access your assessment.
What does your creative flow look like? What struggles have you had in initiating your creative flow? Are you stuck on a stage, if so which one? Share your thoughts in the comments.