You know what really grinds my gears?
When people claim to know the objective truth about the obviously subjective.
I say this as a writer who tackles almost exclusively subjects on a subjective scale and probably am branding myself as a terrible hypocrite more and more with every word I type.
But this is a major fear of mine as a creator.
I fear being guilty of ignoring subjectivity and I hope that fear of ignorance keeps me humble in my pursuit.
So how do I use that fear to “check myself” and hold some personal accountability?
In my experience, creativity typically holds a progression something like this…
Step One: You have something to share.
Whether that be a thought, opinion, skill, or talent…you realize that you have something beautiful to present to the world and you want to show it off. This manifests in whatever art becomes your craft (writing, speaking, painting, knitting, table making, etc.).
Step Two: You want to provide something valuable.
Sharing your creative pursuits is fun and all, but at some point all creatives face a similar barrier. They realize, “I like to make things but why would the world enjoy consuming the things I make? What can I do to provide value to my consumer?”
This is where I see lots of great and driven creators fall victim to the monster that is objectivity.
They feel like they have to provide clear value, so they take what they have at hand (their own experience) and formulate an opinion that will allegedly change their consumers life forever.
But this DIY opinion isn’t objective and NEVER should be.
It’s formulated off of one person’s experience and even if that experience is seemingly diverse and calculated, in the grand scheme of things, it still only represents a fraction of the world’s population so small that I won’t even try to illustrate it (I’m not a big numbers guy).
Step Three: Go out and share what you’re creating.
I’m not telling you to not share your experiences. I think we need more of the world to share their experiences. So many great things have come from a diverse set of people sharing their personal experiences.
But when you get so focused on providing a clear value for your consumer, it’s far too easy to zone in on your own experience, and shut out the experience of other people.
So take what you have to say and put it out in the world. It may not seem polished or groundbreaking at first glance, but a little bit of time and a little bit of consistency can uncover a lot of potential.
A wonderful way that you can begin to do this is to acknowledge that you know nothing.
State you’re experiences and thoughts as what they are (your personal perspective), and compare and contrast them against the experiences of the world. Let them grow and evolve forever and constantly be on the path of learning.