Photo by Scott Bourne – Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs Creative Commons

This is a photography-centric web site, photography is a creative endeavor for most. I try to post things here that will inspire all creatives, no matter how they express themselves. Today is no exception. But today’s post may be one of the most translatable I’ve written. It’s about self-doubt.

I speak or teach at most photo conferences (although I have scaled back to rest and relax and give others a chance to share their views) and the thing I find most common is that photographers are often their own worst enemy.

They are filled with angst and self-doubt. They have self-esteem issues when it comes to creativity. Certainly this is a generalization, but it’s one that I’ve seen enough to think it’s more true than not.

I have often been surprised to learn that all most people I meet at these photo conferences, or shows want – is some encouragement. They want someone to be on their side. They are looking for permission to trust themselves and go make stuff. So I do what I can to give them a push.

There are a few simple things anyone can do who is reading this post to get their own self-doubt out of the way of their creative endeavors.

1. Surround yourself with positive people and influences and reduce or remove those that are negative.

2. Listen to yourself. Be quiet. Be still. Listen to what you think about yourself.

3. Be ready to argue with yourself if you hear or feel negative about your creative prospects. That’s your opinion of your circumstances talking not your circumstances.

4. Practice affirming yourself and others in creative environments.

5. Concentrate. Multi-tasking is highly overrated. Try to use your whole brain on your art. Try to make sure you go to bed thinking about your creative tasks and make sure to attend to them as soon as you wake up. When you’re fresh, and life’s little foibles haven’t gotten to you yet, you are at your best.

Try this stuff. It might sound a ethereal but I can tell you it’s worked for me and I sincerely hope it works for you.

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Join the conversation! 4 Comments

  1. [...] for permission to trust themselves and go make stuff. So I do what I can to give them a push. [read] Share this:FacebookTwitterEmailRedditMoreDiggStumbleUponLike this:LikeBe the first to like [...]

  2. [...] Today I read a blog post on photofocus.com: “Creatives: Are You Your Own Worst Enemy?“. [...]

  3. [...] http://photofocus.com/2012/10/04/creatives-are-you-your-own-worst-enemy/ Like this:Like4 bloggers like this. Published: October 5, 2012 Filed Under: G, Uncategorized [...]

  4. [...] read this blog post the other day on why we are our own worst enemy and ultimately decided to listen to point number [...]

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