Perfectionism is the Enemy of Creativity

Photo credit: CoachCreativeSpace.ning.com
Photo credit: CoachCreativeSpace.ning.com

Perfectionism is the enemy of creativity.

Creativity is entering an unknown space and allowing something new to bloom forth. It is not about controlling that space, just keeping your eyes wide open for what is there, picking out what is meaningful and shaping that into something new. It is being a partner to that great mystery beyond us who drops down bits of beauty for us to notice.  The job of the artist is to notice them and draw them forth, not to create them wholesale.

What you create doesn’t start with you. It comes from somewhere beyond, somewhere much deeper than what you consciously know.

Perfectionism, on the other hand, is about control and fear: I have to be perfect so people will love me. I can’t show my flaws.  Perfection starts with you, not somewhere beyond. That is why perfectionism is anathema to creativity.

When I am ready to send out a new song or video into the world, I ask myself, “Can I live with this?” If the answer is yes, then I’m done. If the answer is no, then I keep working on it. Could it be better if I put more time and/or money into it? Yes. Do I want to put more time and/or money into it? If the answer is yes, then I do. If the answer is no, then I send it out into the world.

Perfectionism kills creativity.  I will still love you even if you are not perfect. Especially if you are not perfect. I want to see your humanity through your art. Humanity is imperfection. Show me who you are.

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