Creative Dreams Come True
The other day, I visited a very successful online entrepreneur’s website and the first thing that caught my eye is how he introduced himself. He said, “Hi, I’m James. I’m an introvert”.
There was something really powerful about this successful man telling the whole world that he’s an introvert. I thought about it for days because I’m also an introvert. More like the introvert’s introvert. I was so shy (to some extent, I still am) that I wouldn’t speak up unless you spoke to me first. The best people who’ll be able to attest to how much of an introvert I am, are my family members and my schoolmates.
But my main point here is, we all have certain creative dreams we want to accomplish in our lives. And there are people we admire because they’ve done some or all of the things we want to be able to do. However, when we see them, we see their successes and not their weaknesses. And because we only see their successes, something happens in our minds.
We magnify our weaknesses and diminish theirs.
Let me explain. When we see someone who is doing something well, we think they were only able to achieve that success because they don’t have the weaknesses we have. By so doing it makes us think ourselves incapable of achieving what they’ve achieved.
I know this because I used to think that way – I used to think I could never create the art that artists I admired created. I looked at all they had going for them and I looked at all I didn’t have and concluded, I didn’t have it in me.
But I was wrong. And you’re also wrong for thinking this way.
This is the reason I run this blog – to get as many people as I can to turn away from this way of thinking. It is why I write about both the successes and failures in my creative journey. Because telling someone about your success without the failures you encountered along the way doesn’t do anything in helping them create their own success stories. At best, you earn their admiration and at worst you push them further into feelings of lack of confidence.
But when you juxtapose success against weakness, as James did, it’s a more powerful and effective story. Because then the lesson is, if despite his weakness he can become successful, then despite your weakness you can be successful too. Which is the point I want you my blog readers to take.
Because the thing is despite being an introvert’s introvert, fearing rejection, making a lot of mistakes, not being sure of the next step to take, I don’t let that stop me. I still take steps and achieve some very notable successes as a result.
Last week, I appeared in two different publications. In one, I was interviewed for the article, and in the other, I wrote two articles for the publication. I received text messages and emails from people congratulating me because they saw the newspaper and magazine articles. Some of them told me how much they admired my abilities.
As much as I was very excited about the three articles in those two publications, I couldn’t help but think about the people looking at these accomplishments and thinking, I could never do all these things Clara does. And how so wrong they are to think that way.
Often when I speak to groups, I like to tell them, “I’m not special”. And I’m not. I’m ordinary. I have the same concerns and worries just like anyone else. I worry about being a good mom to my kids and setting a good example for them. My heart breaks when I see homeless people flood the library for shelter on a bad weather day. There are times I fear rejection and suffer from self-doubt.
In short, I think about the same things ordinary people like you think about. I have the same fears and concerns. But I don’t allow myself to get in my own way.
I’ll submit an article and wait for months not sure if it’ll ever get published. And I’ll agree to an interview and stumble over my words for the first few minutes before I can calm myself down and speak intelligibly. I do them all – despite my fears, weaknesses, and limitations. Because I know other people have these same weaknesses and yet they don’t let them get in their way.
Creative One, all I want you to know is this. You can live your creative dreams!!! You can do whatever your heart desires to do, no matter your weaknesses. Whether you’re stumbling over your words, limping to the finish line, or unsure about yourself. No matter what it is, just take a step and go for it.
If I can do it, you can too. You’ve got what it takes, my creative friend. You’ve got this.
My warmest regards.
The introvert’s introvert.
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Also published on Medium.