Photo by Evan Kirby  @evankirby2

Photo by Evan Kirby @evankirby2

A brief note on the value of sharing:

When I first started writing papers in university I learned about the difficulty of writing.  I made all sorts of mistakes, most frequent of which was my flowery writing.  Sentences like “the author is clear that working from home is can be a distracting environment” would have been “The author is very clear that any work done from ones home can be wrought with the distracting elements of their surrounding environment.”  The same point is being made, but the second is an overload of information.

Creatives face a similar struggle.  We get stuck in our head, overthinking the work that we make.  Whether that overthinking becomes an abundance of unnecessary information or a roadblock in what to write next, it becomes a problem.  I made this mistake because at that point I subscribed to the belief that the only way to be great is for you must come up with your own creative genius. That great art comes from this idea of a lone solitary figure who has moments of brilliance and in a moment of manic expression, creates something awesome.  

The reality is, even the greatest creative minds struggled with how to progress their work.  We self-doubt, get confused, lose focus, and often start down paths that may not lead to the final product. My stubbornness in relying only on myself for my writing was getting in the way of my work.  So how do you fix this issue? Share your work.

Let me unpack that.  Share your work but share it with close people whose opinions you trust. People that either understand your field, or whose knowledge you respect.  What this does is it opens our work up and allows it to be refined by the group instead of one person. One person can get stuck on an idea. A group, shapes, moulds, and pushes an idea forward regardless of one individual's mental block.  Share your work with as many trusted people you can, and it will set your ideas free.

After I started sharing my work with close family members, my writing got much better.

For more on this, listen to “Real Artists Don’t Starve with Jeff Goins” on The Chase Jarvis LIVE Show (released Oct 12, 2017) and read “Show Your Work” by Austin Kleon.