Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Doubt and Just Doing It

Alyson Stanfield puts out a newsletter, blog, and podcast over at her site, Artbizblog.com.  I listen to her podcasts regularly--they're short, to the point, and quite inspirational.

Her latest entries are called "Do It So Good That You Don't Doubt Yourself Anymore."  

I listened to that podcast and it struck me to the core.  Wow.  Yeah, I have a lot of doubts that plague my thoughts quite regularly.  I am inundated with resources on the internet telling me to think about this and that and ultimately splitting my focus.  I find that simply "doing the work" is sometimes a real challenge, and I have to drum up motivation to enter my studio some days...

But this made me think about why...  This made me reconsider just exactly why I may (in Seth's Godin's words) have a problem "shipping"--i.e. following through to completion.  Deep inside, perhaps I'm a little scared of what's happening around me, and my fear prevents me from committing.  I sometimes doubt that I am on the right path, or that I am making the right statements, or that I'm making the right business decisions, or that I am creating the right things...

But that statement, "Do It So Good That You Don't Doubt Yourself Anymore," really hit me.

Time and again, I read and hear that it's "about the work."  I listen to interviews where artists and creative types talk about losing themselves in their endeavors.  I have felt it myself--when you are so involved in something that time seems to slip away and you don't have anything else on your mind.  And soon you have this great, tangible thing that you've put effort into that you can be proud of.

I think that if I simply stop worrying about how much else there is to do, and simply concentrate on making my body of work, I will start to gain a sense of confidence that will in turn feed back into me producing more work.  If I am doing my work to the best of my ability, and I'm sure it's what I want, then I will start to lose my doubts.  But pulling in and away from all that outside stimuli and comparison is probably the first step.

At what point does a person step away from the computer?  At what point does a person stop multi-tasking to focus on one thing?  Why isn't that considered a good thing?

Live Life with Relish!

Image from Shahram Sharif, Creative Commons License.


  1. Corey: I'm delighted that my newsletter/podcast spoke to you. You're right to focus on the work. It's WHY you do what you do. And it's uncool to multitask these days. My new mantra is "I do one task at a time to completion."

    Break a leg!

  2. Thanks, Alyson--I think sometimes that even just hearing someone else speak to what you're feeling is a real help. Your stuff does that for me! It's nice to know there are others out there that know what I'm talking about and feeling. That itself makes things a lot easier. You put out great stuff--I'll certainly keep listening! : )

  3. Corey, do you think that when self-doubt stops, the brilliance will shine thru'? I've always thought that self-doubt comes with creating. Something to think about now! I'm a totally one-task person. Me hubs is able to surf the net while watching a movie at the same time! So insane.

  4. LOL! I can't multi-task at all. And you know, perhaps self-doubt does indeed come with being creative... There is a difference between confidence and blind arrogance. I don't ever want to be so sure of myself that I stop being critically astute about what I'm making... Perhaps an element of doubt is healthy. I just need to learn to moderate it... LOL! : ) Thanks, Jane!


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