Doing It When You Don’t Feel Like It


Everybody who does creative work has figured out how to deal with their own demons to get their work done.

There is no evidence that setting up your easel like Van Gogh makes you paint better.

Tactics are a bit idiosyncratic.

But strategies are universal, and there are a lot of talented people who are not succeeding the way they want to because their strategies are broken.

The strategy is simple, I think.

The strategy is to have a practice, and what it means to have a practice is to regularly and reliably do the work in a habitual way.

There are many ways you can signify to yourself that you are doing your practice.

For example, some people wear a white lab coat or a particular pair of glasses, some meditate, some prefer strong black coffee, some wake up very early in the morning or always work in a specific place, in doing these things, they are professionalising their art.

The notion that I do my work here, now, like this, even when I do not feel like it, and especially when I do not feel like it, is very important.

Because lots and lots of people are creative when they feel like it, but you are only going to become a professional if you do it when you don’t feel like it.

And that emotional waiver is why this is your work and not your hobby.

I write at least one blog post a day, it’s a commitment I made to myself, even when I am sick, or don’t feel like, I wake very early in the morning, every day, public holiday or not, I write my thoughts.

The trick in professionalising your art, your passion, your craft is: to do it even when you don’t feel like it. Doing it when you feel like it is the easy part.


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