The creative process is something we all go through. Whether we are writing a book, creating a business, or starting a new adventure... the process we go through to create this new thing in our lives is probably about as different as our DNA and yet as similar as drawing a breath.
The creative process is messy, scary, confusing, liberating, exciting, life-giving, and more! I thought that sharing what I go through in this process might help somebody else not feel as crazy as I do because it always works out. Always.
This installment of the Creative Process was supposed to be about How to Face Your Fears. Instead, something much more paramount has arisen, and it needs to be talked about.
This post is about When Something Feels Off.
So, you've been chuggin' along and making progress toward your end goal. It feels good, it feels exciting, it feels scary, and it sometimes feels unattainable. All of those are normal!
Before I get into what happened, there is a little bit of a backstory.
For the past 20+ years, I have made (basically) the same type of websites, written (basically) the same type of ebooks, and had (basically) the same type of customer in mind. Everything goes great until it's time to market and publicize what I've created.
I know I have issues inside my mind about being worthy of teaching what I know. It stems from childhood feelings of me not being good at anything. But, being aware of those feelings, I have been able to work around them.
A little side-step here... most published books sell between 500-2,000 copies. That's it. That's CRAZY to me! (I see my book selling more than that in a MONTH!)
Let's get back to marketing and publicizing my work now. I've basically completed all of the steps for my book and now it's time for the marketing and publicizing! I've learned a lot. I've stretched beyond what I knew I was capable of. I've grown as a person. But, now, with marketing upon me once again, I hit a total wall yesterday. I felt it coming for a few days, but yesterday I slammed hard into that wall. Tears, self-doubt, complete overwhelm... you name it. It was the kind of crying where my eyelids were swollen for the rest of the day. Intense.
I was thinking, "I've never been good at marketing AND normal marketing only yields an average of 500-2,000 books sold throughout its lifetime! What's the USE?"
I went to my journal and wrote. I wrote. I wrote more. I cry-talked to my extremely supportive husband and cried more. But then, as I was telling him about how this part "never works for me" (the marketing aspect) and how a typical book only sells 500-2,000 copies, I realized something. Obviously, the marketing that is expected from authors DOESN'T WORK! Not for the number of sales I envision, anyway.
This really opened up my thinking. I started to get an inkling of excitement. And for the rest of the day, everything I watched on TV and everything I read had one message for me... BE YOURSELF.
I went back and read what I had written through automatic writing in my journal that morning. Here's a little of what I was told:
"Pinterest... if you WANT to. Yes, it will drive traffic to your site, but so will the fun things. See the difference? Don't FEEL DESPERATE and don't do things out of desperation! What FEELS GOOD for you to do? List them now and think of more."
To explain a little, I have been toying with the idea of marketing on Pinterest. It is yet another social media platform that I don't use, and, frankly, don't want to learn about.
What I got from yesterday was to market in ways that FEEL GOOD to me, and the ways that feel good to me feel that way because they speak to who I am. I am being myself when I do them.
Now, THAT feels good! Actually, it feels amazing.
So, when something feels off to you, investigate it. Just because it's the way everybody else does it, doesn't mean it's the only way to be done.
Stay tuned for the next installment of "The Creative Process" when I talk about how I faced long-held beliefs about myself and got through to the other side.