Forget Why & Remember Joy (GWTW309)

Being creative entrepreneurs, there’s a lot of talk about understanding why you do what you do. I’ve talked a lot about it in this podcast over the years. I’ve read the books, listened to the talks, and done the work to “start with why,” as declared by Simon Sinek. But this morning I had an epiphany: Somewhere along the journey, I forgot a valuable lesson. It had nothing to do with my why. It was that I actually like doing what I do. I know, complete shock! Sure there are challenges, inadequacies, and the daily bouts with imposter syndrome, but the more I produce creative work for my business and for others, the less need I have for a concrete understanding of “why” and a greater desire to shout “why not.”

Quotes Mentioned in the Episode:

From If You Want to Write by Brenda Ueland:

“…does a person when he is taught, learn something new or just recollect what he knew already, what his soul learned in former states of being” (p. 146).

“But to [create] happily and with self-trust you must discover what there is in you, this bottomless fountain of imagination and knowledge” (p. 146).

Five ways to remember the joy in your work:

  1. Whatever craft you work in, go back and consume your past work.
    • See how far you have come.
    • Relive the emotions.
  2. Get in the daily habit of saying “why not,” otherwise known as “yes.”
  3. Discover the “bottomless fountain of imagination and knowledge” within yourself.
  4. If you have a tendency to rush your work, slow down. If you are slow to produce, pick up the pace.
  5. “Your only as good as your last project” is a great way to drown yourself in a sea of sorrow. Instead, build your body of work in a spirit of gratitude.

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