Have you ever gotten an urge to write something from the bottom of your heart—only to be intimidated by some unnameable force insisting that you smooth the edges until it no longer sounds like you? That urge to fit in and not ruffle feathers…that urge to be like other people so you won’t draw attention…
It may lead you to hit Backspace every time you complete a sentence, starting over with something that’ll sound ‘better.’ Then it’ll make you hesitate before you click Publish or even share a snippet with friends; it’s an irrational fear many of us don’t even want to admit we have.
For those of us already creative, that urge makes us box our potential so it isn’t explosive. We swallow beautiful words because they’re too different for society; we’ll water them down so they no longer have an impact. If a person has yet to find their creative medium, it’ll have a more tragic effect: This person will never try to create, labeling any form of art as a waste of time.
I’m not talking about Writer’s Block, but reluctance to show the world one’s true colors from fear of being judged. Sometimes we don’t think we’re bright enough, or maybe we fear our colors are so bold they’ll blind anyone who walks past us.
What we don’t realize is the world needs more people who’ll glow so brightly with new ideas and creations that they’ll pour magic into a shadowy room.
The creative life is lived both selfishly and for others—that is, we create to find fulfillment but a story ultimately wants to be told. It’s a peculiar balance of doing our own thing and worrying how others will perceive it. Of course it’s all perception in the end—we can’t force someone to like our work—but face it, every creator craves that feeling when someone enjoys our work and says so.
Imagine how much more satisfying that’d feel if we stopped smoothing the edges of our message to create art that was purely ours. Imagine if our messages shone so brightly, they illuminated the room to catch the sight of more people, changing more lives.
It all starts with accepting ourselves for who we are. We should never go after the artist stereotype, because that changes over the years; what the world needs now, at a time so devoid of hope and color, is art with meaning. Art so outrageous and explosive that we will inspire other people to glow as well.
Don’t blur the edges until you’re telling someone else’s story! What we need are original, refreshing, dangerous tales. We need you—yes, you.