Creators, don’t let your obstacles become excuses

We should celebrate content creators.

They’re the ones who see the world differently.

Where would YouTube be without its 151 million YouTubers? (yes, that’s right.)

Of the 75 million websites that use WordPress, think of all the millions of bloggers and journalists that keep the internet alive.

150,000 streamers now make money from Twitch.

Instagram’s 1 billion people upload a staggering 60 million photos a day.

If content is king, then creators are royalty.

If content is king, then creators are royalty

Yet, there are multiple obstacles to creating. Leading to fatigue, the self-doubt that content can be created at the pace required to stand out. We’re worried about not being heard, ensuring originality or being too close to the creators who influence us.

After a time these obstacles can feel like excuses. A metaphorical wall between us and the goal we’re trying to reach. We carry these excuses around and they become our armour whenever we get reminded of the dream we had.

Quite often in London, the tried and tested excuse is time. As Matt Haig wrote in Notes on a Nervous Planet (you really need to buy it), “We often find ourselves wishing for more hours in the day, but that wouldn’t help anything. The problem, clearly, isn’t that we have a shortage of time. It’s more that we have an overload of everything else.

Each day is an opportunity to make a difference, another step towards achieving your dream. Ignore the doubters, only listen to the doers.

Have you ever sat in a brainstorm where there is that one person who can only see the negatives? The barriers to creating? We’ve probably all been guilty of being that person.

When that happens, follow the advice of the granddaddy of creativity, Edward de Bono. In Six Thinking Hats (another good book, here’s the link) those people are the black hats; cautious and careful. They point out why something may not work, difficulties and problems, and how something may not fit within your experience. You need those people, but you can’t let that type of thinking swallow the entire creative process.

(Although Black Hat thinking plays an important role later on for critical analysis of an idea. Is this legal? Is it safe? What are the risks? Does the conclusion follow?)

Often, a creative’s starting position can begin with a black hat. Without challenge, this can form obstacles and excuses to carrying on.

Creators, don’t let your obstacles become excuses.

What do you think?