Fear of self-expression is a form of self-imposed slavery.

Zero Dean

Author | Photographer | CG Artist | Filmmaker

Making what you're inspired to make

Making what you’re inspired to make

Sometimes I get really inspired by the amazing & creative things I see shared online. It makes me want to try to share creative things as well. But then I sometimes hear a voice in my head that says, “What’s the point of even trying? You’ll never produce anything as good as that.” or “You’re so less skilled and so far behind everyone else, why even start?”

The reason I share this is to let you know that if you sometimes battle with a voice like that, you’re not alone. And while I hear the voice more often than I’d like to — and it sometimes slows me down — I refuse to let it deter me from ultimately doing what I want to do.

And you shouldn’t either. Even if you feel behind. And even if you feel like you’re bad at what it is you want to do. Everyone has to start somewhere.

Part of living life to the fullest means making what you’re inspired to make simply because you were inspired to make it.

There is a sense of satisfaction that comes with being able to look at something and say, “I made this.” But you’ll never hear yourself say it if you listen to the voice that stops you from starting. So stop listening to that voice and start listening to the one that says, “Do it anyway.” And realize, even if your goal is to share what you create, you’re not really doing it for others. You’re doing it for you.

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Making what you're inspired to make

Expertise and avoiding vs overcoming problems

I don’t consider myself an expert in anything. Everything I share online and write about in my books is a reflection of something I’ve had to work on to overcome, or in many cases, is something I’m still working on. No matter how much we think we know, there’s always room for improvement.

It is a mistake to think that just because you’ve learned a lesson that it won’t trip you up again multiple times in life.

What life experience provides isn’t necessarily a way to avoid problems, but rather, the confidence of knowing that you can overcome them.

Expertise and avoiding vs overcoming problems

Expertise and avoiding vs overcoming problems

Success and Self-improvement

Success and Self-improvement

Whether we’re talking about success or self-improvement, it’s important to recognize that the paths to both will be dotted with discomfort. And, in order to find things that work for you, you’ll likely have to try many things that don’t. But rather than be embarrassed about your failures, you should be proud that you’re leaving proof of your efforts to attain what you’re striving for.

When you are feeling weak

When you are feeling weak

When you are feeling weak, always take a moment to remind yourself that you are a survivor of every hardship you’ve ever faced in life. You’ve consistently overcome the worst that life has thrown your way, year after year after year.

No one feels strong 100% of the time. Even the people you look up to and respect most in the world have been knocked down, felt unwell, or needed time to just breathe.

Life can be hard – resist the urge to beat yourself up further when it is. It’s ok to not be ok. Give yourself the time & mental space necessary to get better by refusing to focus on things that make you feel worse.

You will overcome whatever you are dealing with now, as you have with everything you’ve previously faced. This is but a very small part of your life. In the grand scheme of things, you’re doing ok. Keep going.

When you are feeling weak

It isn’t criticism that holds you back — it’s you.

It isn't criticism that holds you back -- it's you.

Many times, how you think about the things holding you back hold you back more than the things themselves. For example: criticism.

It isn’t criticism that holds you back, it’s how you choose to think & react to it that does. Always remember that how you choose to respond to criticism and negativity is a choice.

Ignoring criticism is an option that too few people take advantage of. The more that you consciously disconnect yourself from modes of thinking that hold you back, the more you free yourself to move forward unhindered.

It isn't criticism that holds you back -- it's you.

It isn't criticism that holds you back -- it's you.

You can get through this

You can get through this

Always keep in mind that no matter what you’re dealing with now, now is not forever. Repeat that. Now is not forever. Your life will change. Your feelings will change. Your attitude will change. And your circumstances will change.

Whatever you are dealing with now, hang in there and do whatever is necessary to manage this minute, this hour, or this day in as healthy & productive a way as possible and you will see that things will change.

Now is not forever – now is just a passing moment in your life. You can get through this.

You can get through this

Mistakes and misery

Mistakes and misery

Just a reminder: making yourself feel miserable about your mistakes is optional.

While acknowledging mistakes is important, beating yourself up over history won’t change the past, but focusing on what you learned from the experience and moving on in a productive fashion can change the future.

Life is hard enough already without abusing yourself for things you can’t change. Focus on positive progress by changing what you can.

Are you here to be human or are you here to be perfect?

Are you here to be human or are you here to be perfect?

Are you here to be human or are you here to be perfect? You can’t have both. The person who never recognizes ways in which they could have done something better isn’t growing. We’re all a work-in-progress. Accept mistakes as learning experiences and push forward.

Doubters, detractors, and dream stealers

Doubters, detractors, and dream stealers

Anyone who ever attempts to achieve a lofty goal in life will nearly always have to deal with people who try to deter them from achieving their goals.

Whether one encounters true haters or simply well-meaning people offering what they consider to be reasonable play-it-safe advice, it may be helpful to know that the most vocal doubters and detractors of others’ dreams are often those who don’t have the confidence, attitude, or tenacity necessary to achieve their own.

“Don’t let someone who gave up on their dreams talk you out of yours.”

It’s not achievers who spend their time trying to steal other people’s dreams, it’s those who gave up on achieving their own — or worse, never tried.

It is the people who repeatedly set and struggle to achieve lofty goals in life that are often the most vocal cheerleaders for others who wish to do the same.

Because anyone who has ever struggled to achieve anything great knows that the journey to accomplish worthy goals is often fraught with hardship. Achievers know from experience that great tasks often appear improbable — or even impossible — before done.

So don’t waste your time worrying about the doubters who don’t believe in what you’re working to achieve.

Disregard those who find it necessary to point out your mistakes or failures without offering solutions.

Refuse to engage with people who seek to scare you from your chosen path by pointing out all of the things that could go wrong along the way.

And resist the urge to repeatedly explain your goals to those who refuse to understand them.

You don’t need the permission, approval, or understanding of others to achieve great things.

When you receive advice or criticism, be sure to consider its source. Those who know what it means to set lofty goals and struggle to achieve them will offer far more sage advice than those who don’t.

And when in doubt, consult your inner voice.

“Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.” — Steve Jobs

Originally Published on: Aug 6, 2015 @ 06:05

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