Being someone who expresses themselves through creative means is equally amazing and stressful. One of my main outlets is through my writing. I have the passion and capability to transform my thoughts and emotions into words. At the same time, writing can be incredibly stressful and leave me wishing this wasn’t what I wanted to do with my life. While I enjoy having an avenue to express my creativity, it sometimes feels monotonous to always have a deadline looming over my head.
But, it’s not just being a writer that comes with a specific set of struggles. I find that being a creative person comes with a multitude of challenges that sometimes leaves you questioning how in the world you love this form of creative expression so much. Whether you’re a writer, musician, artist, dancer, or something else, there are 6 definitive struggles all creative people share as they pursue their work or hobby.
1. When you don’t feel inspired to create.
If you’re not inspired to express your art then it’s going to feel like a chore to come up with something. And the last thing you want is to do chores. If you’re not inspired to create, then you just know the work you produce will not be your best – it’ll probably suck. No one wants their name attached to work they’re not proud of.
2. When feedback wasn’t as positive as you had hoped.
Sometimes you know that a piece isn’t your best, and you can accept criticism. But, when you feel like you put your heart and soul into a piece and others don’t agree, you take it personally. No matter how well-intentioned or helpful negative feedback may be, it still can feel like a nasty b*tch slap to the face.
3. When you are stuck in a stalemate.
Maybe you can’t think of an idea in order to start or maybe you’re in the middle of a project and don’t know how to proceed. It’s the worst. I have gotten stuck on finding the perfect word for a sentence, and let me tell you, it sucks. Some people say this is a perfectionist thing, but I think all creatives can breathe a sigh of relief knowing they’re not the only ones who consider shaving their heads like Britney circa 2007 when in a stalemate.
4. When someone uses an idea you were planning on pursuing.
There’s a familiar set of feelings that come when you realize someone else has the same idea as you but they claimed it first. There’s that initial feeling of shock, then anger because you need to start all over AGAIN, and finally tears happen when you see how successful YOUR idea turned out to be, for them. For anyone who works in a creative-type job, you know how important it is to quickly claim your ideas and be able to adjust if someone else does it before you.
5. When you lose your work.
I take days to emotionally recover when my laptop erases my work or I lose that piece of paper I jotted my thoughts down on. When you have a moment of creativity and are hit with an idea, it’s best to record those thoughts in more than one place. When you lose your work, whether through digital or physical means, it can throw everything off. I’ve learned the hard way to always double save my work and avoid any loose-leaf, handwritten notes.
6. When your heart just isn’t in it.
Your creative outlet, whatever it may be, is supposed to literally be an expression of how you feel. If you’re stuck doing something with your creative gift that you couldn’t care otherwise about then something just doesn’t feel right. Especially if you want to make a career out of your creative expression, you know that there are some things you’re going to have to do that you just might not like.
The main thing I have learned from my experiences with my own creative art forms is that you need to learn how to balance everything. This list might make being a creative person seem like a tiresome, frustrating lifestyle that would make you question why we even value creativity. But, I can assure you, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not. Nothing is more satisfying than seeing or experiencing the product you created for the first time. That’s why, in my opinion, being a creative individual is one of the greatest things in the world.