Why creatives stop creating
The refinery of creativity pt. 2
Being a creative is a very interesting venture. The whole aspect of putting your art (creative flex) out into the wild is pretty much indescribable. Pardon my poor vocabulary for hunting that it’s “interesting” as it is the word that best captures my feelings and attitude towards content creation.
In a nutshell, being a creative is sometimes fun and filling. Then there are times when it is a burden. You know that space you’re in when you know you should be writing, recording, drawing- literally anything and everything to accelerate your artistic endeavors and you just can’t. There always is that period as a creator where you are torn by the excessive need to create and the crippling inability to do so.
A few weeks ago and good friend of mine ,Ropa, published an article dubbed “The refinery of creativity pt1” and I was ecstatic to find my name mentioned among notable young artists and writers. We then got talking and I told him how his mention made me feel seen (any artists greatest desire IMO). I felt the need to speed the writing process for my next article-which I didn’t haha cause creative fatigue and writer’s block- As a writer people viewing, engaging and acknowledging my work fuels my creative urge.
I am sure it’s the same for most creatives. I mean You-tubers celebrate numbers , bloggers and poets value comments and engagements, podcasters value ratings. I’m not sure I can succinctly explain the feelings that come with people noticing your work as a creative. You’d swear you’re making more impact than the United Nations. Anyways pardon me sidetracking, but the conversation with Ropa sort of gave birth to this article “Why creatives stop creating.”
1) Failure to gain traction/rewards
Normally the thought of being a creative is pushed by the need for an outlet for artistic expression, in doing so one is ready to share their art with an audience. When that doesn’t exactly happen the way one has planned it out, you get to reconsider whether it’s worth putting effort into creating more stuff. In my blogging journey, the small land marks have been fulfilling, the first 10 likes, the first 100 views and bigger milestones like the first 1000 views. If it’s outlets like music, one is concerned about airplay, the number of shows they get to perform at and the number of streams they get. In the absence of such rewards, creativity looks like a futile attempt.
Side note: if you have a creative friend, read their stuff, stream their music, listen to their podcasts, binge their YouTube and give feedback.
2) Perfectionist tendencies
Being a creative entails putting your thoughts, thought process, feelings, sometimes person experiences under scrutiny. 9/10 of the times one is concerned as to how well presented their work is. The need for things to be considered perfect is a common interference to the content creator pipeline. There are periods of endless brainstorming, a good amount of beautiful ideas have ended as thoughts. Perfectionist tendencies find you in the gory of self doubt, personal criticism and imposter syndrome. It’s totally ok to go through such periods as a creator, but letting go of the need to be perfect would probably improve your art a ton. It’s ok to come up with mediocre pieces sometimes. Creating is like exercise, the more you do it, the better you become at it. So complete those drafts, edit those videos, record that song, it’s way better than you think and you’ll only get better.
3) Creative burn out/ fatigue
Actually I’m tired right now and I’m just going to stop writing. Maybe another day another time.
To all the creatives reading this, you never lose your creativity, you just lose touch with it.