On Having Ideas

On Having Ideas >> Life In Limbo

I keep having this feeling that I have nothing else to say in these daily blog posts, no new ideas to share. Crazy, right? Even as I type it, I know it’s not true, but in the moments before I sit down to write in the mornings, that feeling pops up and I think, “Oh, okay, better quit while I’m ahead then.”

This is obviously Resistance, in a clever disguise. Resistance wants to keep us as far as possible from our life’s work and our creativity, and it will try almost any trick in the book in order to keep us small and “safe”. I think we all have our own unique brands of Resistance, and clearly one of mine is the insidious idea that I should just throw my hands in the air and announce that I simply don’t have any more ideas, so I’m just going to throw in the towel on this whole endeavour.

Steven Pressfield says that our job as artists is to just keep showing up, despite everything Resistance throws at us, and just keep making the work. Keep showing up, even if that little voice in your head yells that no one cares, or that the work is bad, or that YOU HAVE NO MORE IDEAS. You do whatever it takes for you to show up anyways. 

And so I think about Seth Godin, who has published a daily blog post for an entire decade. I think about Elise Cripe, who blogged on weekdays for almost as long. She has a planner business now, and one of her products says “You’re not going to run out of ideas.”

I am humbled by their commitment, which knocks some sense into me. It’s true: I’m NOT going to run out of ideas. Ideas are infinite, endless, eternal. It’s never true that I’m out of ideas, even when I feel tired or uninspired. There is always another rock to turn over, a new path to explore. So two questions today: what is your Resistance holding you back from today? And what do you need to know in order to do it anyway? 

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