Start Your Masterpiece in 2018: Three Easy Ways
Hello everyone, it's me Stéphen or how most of you know me, Swizzy. I'm so excited to kick off my first "2 Cents" entry from my 8IGHTY/2WNTY Creative Coaching program. It's been a long three years of figuring out how best to serve my fellow creative peers and those who want to begin this long and exciting journey. My first goal is to share with you the things that motivate and teach me the most. Without further adeiu, I bring you "2 Cents".
This has got to be one of my favorite and most listened to podcasts on my Spotify library. David Kadavy, former Silicon Valley product designer turned best selling author now dabbling in education and improvement in the mediums of creativity, writing, marketing, productivity and entreprenuership. This guy is ridiculous; from the way he breaks things down so easily, how he explains with very practical examples and even his ability to locate and interview choice professionals even though he regards his podcast as 'still a baby' with its three years on the air.
This particular podcast will help you set the tone of your goals diving into the third week of 2018. I struggle with balance and goal setting constantly. I was just talking to my roommate and best friend World (yes, that's his real name) about the difficulty of trying to fit so many things into a day. From my blogs, to working out, stretching, reading, creative sessions, stunts and everything else on my plate--I sometimes feel like I failed if I didn't work on everything everyday. World brought up Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson in his early stages.
He said, "Do you think the Rock was able to do everything he wanted to do as soon as he jumped into wresting for WWF? It took time for him to be able to acquire what he has now." His example of the Rock was just him exercising the fact that he knew me so well. I look up the the Rock; he has an amazing story but World was very right. Dwayne was not always the behemoth of a man we see trading jokes with Kevin Hart on set. During his wresting days, a much smaller and more hungry version of Dwayne knew what his ultimate goals were and he set after them one at a time. First things first, time to create and build an image. The fame that Dwayne has now has a lot to do with that bad-boy Jabroni of a character he played as a wrester.
This lead to him quickly rising the ranks in the wrestling world, to a couple of movie deals--like 97 actor credits in films and projects over the last 22 years and now being one of the most popular and widely commercial talents in the game. With more money came more free time and with the extra time, he began to set goals to get in the best shape of his life. Nonetheless, it all started with one goal. Building an image to base all of your hard work off of. I'll be covering branding in my 101: Craft to Career series coming soon. Getting back on topic, as advertised, Kadavy does an amazing job of explaining how to set goals, how important practicality is in that process and breaks down to simple exercises to set you up for long term goal-smashing success. I'm basically giving you a cliff notes version of this podcast steering it towards the art community and our industry.
Please comment and share if this blog proves to be helpful to you, the gift of spreading knowledge and awareness is greatly appreciated.
His 2 Cents...
(Click anywhere on the bar to rewind/fast-forward. You're welcome.)
My Take Away..
- Habits, Not Resolutions
- Build the Habit First
- Do Daily Deliverables
Resolutions don’t work, they are vague. When life happens, getting sick, losing your car, having to pay rent, etc. these resolutions become open-ended and easier to forget your commitment. Resolutions aren’t bad, just be sure to translate your resolution into a habit.
Usually when building a habit, we end up starting off too strong or biting off more than we can chew. For example, your goal may be to post more content. You may take on the task of creating three pieces of content every day to post—this may be just as bad as that vague resolution you started off with. Eventually, there will be a day where you will be unable to fulfill your daily habit. Your ambitious plan may end up making you feel bad. This starts the cycle of failure and resentment and attaches to your habit. You begin to associate posting or your creative content with feeling bad about yourself and naturally you stop posting and/ or creating content altogether. Remember that building a habit in itself is an accomplishment. Scale back your habit to something that is ridiculously easy to start. Instead of posting 3 times a day, try only once a day in the beginning.
Most people dream too big. Most of you will choreograph to a few songs but never post or film any of it, record a few songs but never finish the album, paint a few pieces of art but never work with a gallery to showcase your works. The idea of you vision could become scary; they begin to resemble a giant cyclops or a dragon with the ability to squash or barbecue you if you get too close. This is because "doing the work is much more than just doing the work”. Shipping, itself, is a skill. Scale down that big dream into easy deliverables and ship them out daily. Find a group of friends, have them learn your choreographed sets and shoot 1 minute videos every week. Record a 15-20 second song each day and put it on Soundcloud. Submit photos of your paintings to various gallery owners as you complete them until someone takes interest. This will help you practice the skill of Shipping. You find out that that cyclops and dragon are more cuddly than carnivorous. Meanwhile, you’re building a creative vocabulary that you can mix and match into bigger works.
There you have it—three small ways to get a few big dreams started. Get to work!