“Your problem is to bridge the gap which exists between where you are now and the goal you intend to reach.” Earl Nightingale
Get Out the Box: Ira Glass on the Creative Process
How are you minding your creative gap? When I started this blog 8 years ago, it was meant to be a motivational guide to support the sales agents and staff at the company I worked for. As time went by, the economy shifted, jobs went south and, responding to a gap in purpose, it shifted directions too. I refashioned what could have been a sales driven, quotas meeting blog into its current incarnation. It was neither intentional nor planned to be what it has become. The only clear agenda was to use this blog to motivate, inspire and add laughter to the lives of souls that passed by this portal. As anyone who understands the creative process and her finicky muse knows, the process is not linear. It meanders as it finds a pathway from one location into new realms of expression and the journey is not always pretty. There are mines along the path; failures, false starts, and screeching halts that add to our growing pains and force us to attempt a start over, again and again.
Have you experienced gaps in where you are/where you expect to be? If you’ve just started blogging, perhaps not. But for those of us who’ve been on this road a tad longer, we have, if we are willing to be honest about it, reached moments of reconsideration or gaps in our journey. Part of the journey for me includes those gaping hole moments when I changed the name, loved/hated it, wrote more/less, gained/lost traffic, and made/lost friends. There have been times when I considered doing massive changes to it all because the outcomes weren’t quite on par with my goals. There have been deliberate periods of silence or gaps in creativity, as I turned my energies elsewhere and tried to re-calibrate what this all means. I believe the gaps force us to stop, take stock, rethink our strategies and look for new ways to mind the gap while staying true to our creative vision. This is true of events, not just in the creative realm but, also in every day life.
“To be creative means to connect. It’s to abolish the gap between the body, the mind and the soul, between science and art, between fiction and nonfiction.” Nawal El Saadawi
How do we mind the gap without losing our focus/ourselves? The creative and symbolic gaps are guides along the path to our dreams, and they force us to look within for answers. Just as the man who takes a walk to the peak of the mountain on a daily basis knows that the temperature will not always be constant, we can refocus our energies and purpose by acknowledging the presence of the gap in our lives as transitory. We can view the gap as a warning to not become complacent and to consider new roads up the mountain. If we are always looking for shortcuts or easy solutions to help us grow creatively, we will eventually tire of those tricks. The true test of our metier is doing what we love; even when those closest to us think it’s a waste of time.
Why do you blog? Why do you return to the process again and again in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds? I don’t know about you but, for me, the answer is simple: I love the creative process and how it, even with the limitations, helps me grow. The gap is a great teacher and the split, between where we are and where we want to be, keeps me going back again, and again and again. I believe the ups and downs we experience in our creative life is a natural progression in our growth as creatives. We are challenged, pushed, and sharpened by the fire of creativity and it forces us to commit or get out. I choose to go with the flow. How do you handle your creative ups and down? Have a Happy Thanksgiving Season!
This post was inspired by a Daily Post Prompt: – Mind The Gap – For this week’s challenge, tell us a story — in words, sounds, images, or any combination of media — about the struggle to close the gap between an idea and its realization. It could be about a time when you succeeded, or failed, or got stuck somewhere on the spectrum between these two extremes. It could be about helping another person close their gap, or about the people, artwork, or experiences that inspire you to work on yours. It can focus on a time when you decided to push through — or a moment in which the result was satisfying despite falling short of your initial vision. I look forward to seeing what you come up with this week. To help other participants and new fans find your response in the Reader, tag your post #DiscoverWP. Not sure how to add a tag? Learn more.
Positive Motivation Tip: May the gaps in your creativity, guide you to a greater path