Creative Process

Posted by dianne on Dec 15, 2011 in Newsletters | | No comment

Occasionally someone asks me about my creative process. Being a gifted communicator, I usually just mumble and change the subject. At long last I am about to reveal the first two steps of this process in hopes that you may be able to use these steps in your endeavors.

As soon as I commit to a project, either my own work or a client’s project, the first two steps never vary.

Step 1: Jump in somewhere along the panic spectrum.

My brain starts working overtime with my committee telling me:

  • You can’t do this one. You may have been able to do earlier projects but this one is just too big, too hard, too specialized.
  • Your readers are so much smarter than you are; they will scoff at your feeble writing.
  • Your client is so much smarter than you; he/she will scoff at your feeble rewrites and editing.
  • You are going down in disgrace.
  • You will never write another thing.
  • You will never get another client.
  • You will end up a bag lady.

Step 2: Talk myself in off the ledge.

I have to take control of my self-talk to shut up that inner critic with advice like this:

  • OK, you have been doing this work for decades, you must have some ability.
  • Calm down. You know panic is just part of the process.
  • You don’t have to be any smarter than your readers; you have a few experiences and ideas that might be helpful to them.
  • You don’t have to be any smarter than your client; you have a few skills that might be helpful to him/her.
  • Come on, give it a rest. You know what to do. Journal about this feeling then jump in.
  • You can do this project one paragraph at a time.

It seems that I have to become my own cheerleader and give myself permission to abandon perfection. It’s only by embracing imperfection that I can get over that block and move to creativity. OK readers, I am counting on you to tell me I am not alone in this struggle. Do you ever wrestle with those inner critics that try their best to discourage you? How do you shut them up?  


If you would like to use this article, you are welcome to do so as long as you include this credit:

By Dianne Morr, professional speaker and author of Ice the Burnout! 20 Simple Ways to Make Your Life Better. As a ghost writer, writing coach, editor and book shepherd, Dianne helps people write and publish books every

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