For anyone today who is a writer, a speaker, a musician, an actor, or an artist, there is a temptation to feel like you need a large audience to be validated.
If you don’t have lots of people watching, listening to or consuming what you create, then the effort you make creating it isn’t ‘worth it’.
What has occurred to me lately is that is entirely backward.
The true benefit of creating is that you get to do it. You get to create something that expresses a part of you, and you get to put it out into the world.
For me, I started this blog about three years ago with the idea that it would be a great way to share my speaking ideas in the written format. It helped me to write down what I was thinking, so the ideas were clearer and flowed better when I delivered them to an audience.
But after a few months of writing a lot, I realized: I get a lot of joy from sitting down and typing out my thoughts and publishing them.
Sometimes somebody would like a post, and it would bring me some joy. I’d feel like I’d contributed and helped someone in their life.
Over time, however, this desire to have more and more likes on what I was doing started to take over the pure joy of writing itself. I began to feel disillusioned if a particular blog didn’t get likes or shares or comments.
In short, I forgot the reward was the creating itself.
If you are a writer, a speaker, a musician, an actor or an artist, you have to create to feel alive. It’s only because it’s so easy to share our creations today that we start to get addicted to getting attention from them.
The creating is the gift. The true joy. The time you spend creating something is the time that you feel truly alive.
So here’s a renewed approach from me. I am going to creating something every day. A new speech, blog post, podcast or video. Something that makes me feel alive through the act of creating itself. It doesn’t matter if anybody but me sees it, what matters is that I get to do it.
The reward of creating is intrinsic.
When you create, you feel alive.
(Thank you to my friend Sebastian for the reminder.)