I love starting new creative projects. My success rate is good but it’s not 100%, which can get very frustrating. But the reason for that isn’t because I lose motivation. Most of the time, it’s because I’m scared.
I’m scared that I’ll mess it up.
I was editing a video and I perfected the pacing of the beginning and was pretty satisfied with the ending. All I needed was the middle. I stared at the blank space in the timeline and I was terrified that I would ruin the video. Which is ridiculous because I already knew what I wanted it to look like and I knew exactly which clips I needed.
For that one second I felt that fear – but it only lasted for one second. I took a deep breath and that second of fear was over. I barreled on and finished the project much to my satisfaction.
I’m scared that it won’t be any good.
This one’s a little weird because I’m not talking about it being good for readers. Sometimes I’m afraid it won’t be good for me. Like when I read it again later I’ll just think about how horrible it is and completely trash it, wasting all of that time and energy.
But then I’ll pull up an old project. And it is so enjoyable. It’s got character development in all the right places. If it’s a game, it’s actually quite fun. And I always ask myself why I stopped working on it in the first place.
Even though I know why I stopped. I let that little spot of fear turn into a black hole.
As I get older and spend more time writing and developing other kinds of projects, I’ve learned to notice my fear. When it comes up, I remind myself why I’m working on the project. I tell myself that it’s good – and if it’s not, editing and refocusing will only make it better. I remind myself that I can’t mess it up. It’s something that I created out of seemingly unconnected nothing.
And then it’s not terrifying anymore.
Instead it’s beautiful.