How to hold onto your creative dream when the world tries to squash it.

When you’re young, you are told to dream big as you can do anything you want in life, in fact it’s encouraged. Fast forward to being a twenty-something and the concept of not having a 9-5 job as a corporate cog is completely outside the norm. 

If you let slip that your end game is something completely different, people look at you as though you’re a mad day-dreamer setting yourself up to fail

The thing is, you aren’t crazy for wanting something different to a conventional life. You don’t have to put your dream on a shelf and settle for something you don’t love, despite what the government is telling you at the moment. 

There’s nothing more attractive than someone who knows who they are, and is unashamed about it. Unless that person is absolutely terrible, but generally, you can spot the genuine, honest people on and offline.  

Yet, the world will try and squash your dream by making you work arduous jobs with long hours, paying you potentially less than you deserve (or making you work too hard for more). Either way you’re exhausted and your spare time is filled with life admin or the general day to day tasks that keep the world spinning. Where are the hours to work on what you love? Pursure your dream job?

Well there is time, you just have to prioritise your dream and set some life and work boundaries as, as I mentioned, the world isn’t going to help you get there. In fact, it might just remind you how tough it’s going to be.

How to hold onto your creative dream when the world tries to squash it.

Admit it. 

This took me a long time to do, mainly out of fear. I mean what if I don’t ever have a published book, when I’ve told everyone I want to be a writer? It’s embarrassing – or at least that’s what I thought before. 

Sure, there are some people who look at you as though you are crazy for believing you can do that absurd, usually creative endeavour, but why can’t you? Lots of people do it, and some of those people are probably not that far removed from you. It is within your reach, but you have to be honest with yourselves and others about what you want to know where you’re going.  

Show up as that person every day. 

I have a piece of paper on my desk that says: Show up as an influencer, writer and creative. Every single day I have to make sure I’ve showed up in some capacity for each of those roles. 

Write a reminder to yourself somewhere you can see it every day to show up in some way – big or small – as the dream creative you want to be. It might be brainstorming ideas, doing research, creating a Pinterest board, pitching, DM-ing someone, creating something, it’s all time well spent on that dream.

Do it even when you don’t feel like it. 

The difference between a professional and an amateur is that they turn up even when they aren’t in a creative, productive or good mood. They do it because they know it’s in their best interest long-term, it’s work.

Also, when you’re feeling tired, down or a bit apathetic about it all, doing something you love might actually boost your mood too. It’s a win, win. 

Watch YouTube interviews of people already doing it

I’m a sucker for watching interviews with screenwriters, novelists, directors even actors of films I loved. I just want to know how it was done so I can learn from them. 

And if you can find hundreds of videos of people doing what you want to do online, then who’s to say that you won’t be doing that one day too?

Share this passion and dream of yours online.  

The internet exists for people to take up space, so why not show people what you’re about? 

Equally, by sharing what you love on social media or on a blog you’re more likely to connect with the right people to make this future happen. You’ll connect with likeminded people and attract others who relate to your passions, which will make you feel less mad for wanting to do this in the first place! 

Read more about successfully having a side hustle online here.

Remind yourself regularly that you are not crazy for still believing you can do something unconventional. 

Take it from me ok? Write it everywhere, have it as a note on your phone. 

Ignore the haters, disbelievers, and those that have shelved their dreams and settled. 

Sometimes these people will even be your friends, family or colleagues, so you can’t avoid them after a conversation about why they think you should give up and focus on something else. 

Absolutely ignore them, be polite and remember they’ve shelved their dreams and are only going to be embarrassed when you’ve achieved yours.

This has happened to several people I know, where old colleagues tell them that they are setting themselves up to fail by wanting to have their own business or be a creative full-time… yet now they do it for a living and love it.  

You should be more scared it’s going to happen than it never will. 

If you are terrified that it will happen and you don’t really know how you’re going to do it or feel after it’s done, then you have a great dream pal! So don’t worry about what’s next and focus on what you can do now. 

Do you have a creative dream? How do you hold onto it and make time for it?

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  • Hannah says:

    I love the idea of having a reminder on your desk or somewhere that you see everyday to remind you to stick with your dream. I definitely never thought I would have the career I did when I was younger and whilst I love my job, I do feel like I am not fully utilising my creative side cue why I started my blog. There are never going to be enough hours in the day to do everything you want to do but any time is better than no time. xx

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