Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Getting Sidetracked... Overcoming the Distraction Saboteur to Creativity

Getting sidetracked is my number one epic fail... as my dear son would put it.

I caught myself doing it last night. I was attempting to cook dinner. I then realised I had enough pastry to make a second quiche. And then put on sausages as well. I was helping our boy with his homework. Girl on the sofa demanded her tights fixed, and whilst I was looking for a needle in the sewing bag, decided she'd prefer to do weaving. Which I had to set up for her. Whilst our littlest suddenly decided that she needed to needle felt and have a drink of squash. At the same time.

I smelt the sausages singeing.

At THIS point I realised that I needed to say no. To everything bar making dinner. Rather than trying to keep everyone happy and help everyone.

I can only do what one can do... but what one can do, I will do it.

These words are my mantra.

But so often I get pulled off focus, my energy pulled off centre by the demands of others. And being a helpful sort of soul who seems to see their existence on this planet defined by helping as many people as possible, this happens quite a lot.

So I'm currently half way through compiling the self publishing e-course. It is LONG, HARD work... there's a reason there is nothing out there like it.

I'm doing it because others have voiced their need. And I'm doing it because there is a gap in the market... And I'm doing it for the author I was starting out... this is the place that all my products come from...

But now I'm wondering how much of me actually wants to be putting it together... and how much of me is just wanting to be helpful to all the people who want to know more about self pub...

You have NO idea how much work it is - not just content and getting it down - but making it accessible and friendly, not overwhelming or scary... and all the techie bits that need to be done to put it into place... I had no idea when I started.

And, as always happens, in order to pour my energy into it, to create it, I have to take my energy out of other stuff. Paid work. And then it starts getting scary. Is this a good investment of my time and energy? Will it be like I hope it will? Will it be any good? Will people actually buy it... or do they just want lots of free advice... and earnings go down as energy goes in... and I am called on to keep the faith. And keep my butt moving. And I'm tired. And it's hard... and it will be worth it. I hope.

It will. But I have to keep turning up, and it feels like I'm not getting very far. This is hard, hard graft.

And then I get another email from someone expressing interest and I feel like I have to work twice as hard to finish it off... and then Facebook calls... or my blog... or research for another book....

Must keep turning up and making it happen.

Reminding self of golden creative focus four part rule (catchy title, do you think it'll take off ;) )
1) Do something that fills you up
2) Do a brain dump
3) Break your list into small achieveable chunks
4) Show up and do them. Even if when yo're starting it doesn't feel like the biggest fun you've ever had.
4) Celebrate each chunk as it's achieved...

1, 2 and 3 down... am at 4 now!


  1. It sounds fabulous, Lucy. Good on you for doing stuff like this. Julie xx

  2. Lucy. This is so true. Getting anything done that has guts to it, that has meaning and harnesses momentum, that is different and unique and galvanizing.....requires a heck of a lot of energy. I am concerned as I read you here, and think about my studio which could be used for a movie about hoarding....and the piles of unmatched socks...and I think of what I learned long ago- first things first.
    We mother creatives, artist entrepreneurs are in the zone of making all the time, while also mothering and though this making is our salvation, it cannot also be the undoing of all we are. If it makes you nuts, upsets you, stops your flow of ideas- then maybe it is time to pause. Refresh. OR- if the ideas are flowing and you can work in a way that supports your well-being, then do it. None of this work that we do will be valuable and useful if you kill yourself with a felting needle or choke on the quiche. I am going to take your list in to my day today and see what happens. Will report back. xo S

  3. Feeling your pain! But you can do it, you can do it a thousand times over. I know you can! The world needs what you have to offer, all of it :) x

  4. Feeling your pain! I can empathise so much with the multitasking - I actually think I get an ego kick out of this when it seems to be working, until I realise all the busy-ness has just taken me away from the real work. The balance is letting go and focusing on the hard graft... sitting down and starting is the hardest part!

    The world needs you and what you have to offer, and you can do it, you can do this a thousand times over. You know you can! x



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