It’s all too easy to play it safe with our creative work. There’s a segment in my podcast that’s the fun part. The whacky part. The part that brings me joy and makes me giggle.
It’s also the daring part, the part that is different than anything I’ve heard. It’s the part that makes the ‘safe’ self in me worry about what others will think. Where I wonder, is it any good? Will it be…dumb?
Although this was a fun part of the project, I had to set this concept aside while working on the main parts of the podcast. I had to let it go so I could feel safe enough to work on the stories and the assignments.
I was even ready to go forward without what could be the best part. And then, when we had most of the episodes wrapped, my engineer said, What if we just add that part in at the very end?
And that somehow helped. It gave me permission to do it, and to do it in a way that felt safe.
So I recorded some new bits and had a blast doing it. It felt easy. A friend listened to them and loved them. And they may indeed be the best part of the podcast.
Sometimes we don’t have to abandon the scary stuff, but just set it aside while we gather our confidence. What are you working on that feels too scary or too much of a risk? How might you set it aside to work on parts that aren’t as daunting?
I work on this all the time with my clients and Atelier members. It may seem counterintuitive, but I am always nudging people to lower the bar. To make the work easy and simple. To layer in the process so that we can build confidence over time and tackle the hard things when we feel ready. This doesn’t mean doing nothing and sitting on the sidelines. It means knowing what we can work on in a sane and safe way.
Making things is daunting. What helps you feel safe to take your creative risks?