Fingerprints, Creativity, and That Super Shitty Inspirational Feeling

Every time I see a great piece of art, hear an inspiring talk, or listen to a song that really resonates with me I’m instantly filled with a mix of envy, excitement, judgement, and regret.

Envy, because they’re doing what I’ve always wanted to do.

Excitement, because they’re succeeding at what I’ve been so afraid to fail at that I haven’t really tried.

Judgement, because I think they’re doing a better job than I could.

Regret, because I haven’t been using my time to live my gifts.

That pang of envy should be a moment of revelation instead of discouragement. My fears are actively pointing me toward what I need most in order to grow, toward what the world needs most from me.

It’s as if I fear that my life’s true calling is no longer available because someone else is already making what I want to make, saying what I want to say, and playing what I want to play. If I can’t be original, why even bother?

On the other hand if I do more of the things I love doing, then my life will be spent in a state of joy and flow. I will be happier, giving me the chance to make everyone around me happier as well.


Fingerprints are common to us all, yet every fingerprint is unique. There is nothing original about having fingerprints, but it’s impossible not to leave a unique mark on everything you touch — a mark that only you can make. Creativity works the same way: nothing is original, everything is unique.

Keep an eye out for that spark of inspiration that disguises itself as envy and holds you back from doing what matters most to you. Trust that it’s pointing you toward the things you need most in order to grow. Then throw the gloves off and make your mark. If you give life to your gifts, they will give life back to you.