HOW to BEAT DEPRESSION, ANXIETY, and PROCRASTINATION as a CREATIVE
Elon Musk says building a company is like “chewing glass while staring into the abyss.”
That’s true for creating anything worthwhile — a book, a song, a business, art, you name it.
The creative process is an emotional rollercoaster. You’ll experience euphoric highs and soul-crushing lows, often within hours of each other.
Many artists are overwhelmed by the downturns. They burn out. They never produce to their potential.
Creative anxiety comes from self-doubt. When you’re pouring your heart and soul into something, you wonder whether it’s worth the high price you’re paying.
In your mind, there’s a perfect image of what you’re creating. It has all the beauty and grandeur of Mount Everest.
…But then you find yourself at the bottom of a deep valley. Between you and that mountain top is a world of suck.
You procrastination when you don’t know how and where to take the first step.
When you do start, the gulf between what you can imagine and what your skills can create is depressing.
There is another way.
If you do this, you can solve (most) of the emotional lows of creating while producing more and better work.
The answer is:
Ship every day.
Every single day, start and you complete *something*.
First, take that grand vision you want to realize, and break it down into smaller pieces.
Every day, decide on a task to do.
It should be big enough to challenge you, but small enough that you can definitely get it down.
Write it down on a piece of paper, then do it. When you’re done, Mark it off, or throw it away.
But get it done.
Shipping daily works for three reasons:
When you ship every day, it gets easier. A few weeks will go by, and you’ll look up and realize you’ve effortlessly made a huge amount of progress.
2.) Sense of progress.
Your emotional well-being comes from your sense of your own trajectory in life.
A bum who finds $100 is elated. A billionaire who loses $100 million is suicidal.
When you’re improving every day, you can’t help but feel positive and optimistic.
50% of your work will be bad. 40% will be good. 9% will be great and 1% will be transcendent.
…But it’s impossible to predict before hand which will be which.
The only solution is to work every day, sharpen your skills and be ready for those rare moments of greatness.
If you’re building or creating something in your life, then build or create a little something every day.
Then wake up tomorrow and do it again.