Being an Independent Creative (3/4): Self Motivation

So I’ve briefly mentioned the comparison between being an independent creative and an independently run cafe. One core comparison that I’d like to delve into is the self motivation needed in order to achieve both. If independently running a cafe is your means to live and support your livelihood then your creative independence should essentially be seen in the same light.

Whatever you’re role, everyone has days when they get up and can’t face the day, you wake up and you simply can’t be bothered. These are the days that are the hardest, and when these days happen continuously one after the other then it becomes even harder. The smallest amount of self motivation you had to begin with quickly starts to slip away from your grasp and nothing you do ever seems to help that grasp get any tighter.

This is that moment in time when as an independent we have to evaluate who we are and what we really want to achieve. I mentioned before, we can’t make an excuse, we have to make a decision; this statement should almost become a mantra to you when waking up in these moods. By saying to yourself ‘I can’t make an excuse I have to make a decision’ when you wake up gives yourself only one choice: Decide what you need to do in order to change your attitude, in order to feel happier, in order to be healthier.

I’ve come to realise that my self motivation depletes when I’m simply not being creative and ignoring this question. Everyday I get up and make excuses without making decisions. I don’t decide not to be creative it just happens. I subconsciously procrastinate and blame it on my mood or the fact that I simply don’t feel like it. Self motivation is key here. Getting up and wasting your time on things you don’t really need to be doing is the excuse.

Make a decision to move forward, make a decision to change your attitude, make a decision to be happier.

Life vs Creativity (4/4): Make a Decision

This feels to me to be the perfect time to write this. I’ve recently been finishing my Human Imperfections EP, and if you follow my posts you will notice that I’ve had to delay it’s official release due to illness; illness partly caused by stress. This illness lead to me not being able to sit down and do the final mixes comfortably, and I wanted to make sure I wasn’t rushing the process for the sake of it… Thus begins the final blog post regarding ‘Life vs Creativity’.

“…consider which is more important.”

At the end of the day, in order to be creative we need to have the time to do so. In order to do this we may need to reconsider what’s more important; creativity or life? It’s a decision that I’ve made over and over again, and this can lead to some awkward situations. Perhaps work is getting in the way? Well then work needs to change. Perhaps social time with friends is getting in the way? True friends will be understanding and supportive. Perhaps you’ve been successful with creativity and it’s lead to being so busy being creative for someone else, that you can’t be creative for yourself perusing the true career you desire. Consider each thing, and consider which is more important.

“…you will benefit, and those around you will also benefit.”

Making the decision to allow time for your creativity will benefit you both creatively and emotionally. If creativity is important, and you’re not getting to be creative, you will likely dive into a pit of depression, possibly un-aware of the cause; and this could be it. If you make the decision of which is more important to you then you will benefit, and those around you will also benefit. I often find myself apologising if I’m in a mood, as often it’s down to not having the time to be creative and do the thing I really love. Without becoming too self-loathing, really think about how what you do affects the people around you, and what you should do to improve that affect.

“…allow yourself the downtime after the fact; otherwise you will burn out…”

To add to this, as I have learned you need to realise if you’re trying to do too much at once. We can all make the time, but are we allowing time for rest and de-stress from life? It is as important to rest as it is to do the things we love. Creativity is work. This obviously depends on your personal opinion of whether creativity is simply a hobby or your career, but despite the outcome it involves huge amounts of brain power to be creative, and you need to allow yourself the downtime after the fact; otherwise you will burn out and find you are unable to achieve the things you wanted to achieve originally. There is only so much the body can take.

“…we need to realise that sometimes we need to do what we want to do.”

Whenever you make these decisions, you will immediately see spikes in your creativity and productivity. Stress and anxiety can often hold us back from doing what we want to do as we don’t believe we need to do it. For our own mental health and well-being we need to realise that sometimes we need to do what we want to do. So it’s time to make a decision that counts, and follow through with it. We only have ourselves to blame for any dry spell in creativity, but don’t allow that blame to last and get you down or get in the way. Take action and move forward.