I’m wondering why I ever got started on this creativity business. I am an illustrator and cartoonist. At the end of last year, I set myself up to try to sell my stuff online. It’s not going very well and I’m really questioning why I’m doing this. Is it ego? Why can’t I get myself a proper job? I don’t think I’ll ever make money at this and I’m afraid that I’m setting myself up for a lifetime of unhappiness. Please help!
A Starving Artist.
Dear Starving Artist,
‘Why’ is a useless question for anyone who wants to create. It’s the great unanswerable, the toy of priests and politicians and philosophers. A football for the surface, ego mind to kick about.
Why is the great time-waster. The navel-gazer. The delay-maker.
Say Goodbye to Why. Focus instead on What, Who, Where, When and How.
- What exactly are you offering?
- Who are you offering it to?
- Where will you do your work today (setting a space boundary)?
- When will you do your work today (setting a time boundary)?
- How will you offer it in a way that makes it irresistible?
Consistently, steadily, determinedly working the answers to those questions will bring success.
As to happiness, the zen master Thich Nhat Hanh puts it this way: you have all the conditions for happiness right now in this moment.
Your work is not a way to make you happy. Happy is the way to work.
Uncertain about what you’re creating? Not managing to make it happen? You can apply for The Creative Clinic for one-to-one help.