My creations are not good enough for the world.
I need more practice. More time.
There's no room for me.
I'm not good enough.
I will hide from the world, because I fear that the world will tell me what I already know. That it's bad. That I'm bad. That I should keep quiet.
Words I've told myself over and over, for years. I hid and kept quiet. If I shared anything, it was light and impersonal. Everything that mattered was hidden.
I feared judgement and failure more than anything. I thought it would mean I had to stop creating. I thought creating was a competition where only the best would get a space in the arena. So I hid, because I would rather stay away willingly than get turned away from the world I longed to be part of.
Sharing means giving the world a chance to hate, love or not care about what you made.
If you rely on positive affirmations from others to feel worthy, then sharing is like Russian roulette. It could either go well or really, really badly.
Self-esteem is your sense of worth. If you have a bad self-esteem, worth is reliant on what everyone else thinks. But if it's good, you know that your worth is independent of what everyone else thinks.
As you might have guessed, my self-esteem wasn't one to brag about. I craved a love from the world that I needed to give to myself. I wanted the world to tell me to make, when I had to give myself that permission.
I wanted to please everyone. I wanted the acceptance of the vast majority.
When I slowly turned my self-esteem around, sharing changed from being about getting affirmation, to finding the people who wants what I make.
When the burden of people-pleasing lifted, I saw that the world is big and differentiated. I understood that it's okay to please a small group and shrug at the rest.
Sharing is not about everyone's opinion, it's about the ones who are delighted.
J.K. Rowling didn't write Harry Potter for those who said her books were too long, she wrote for us who dreamed of magic and adventure.
The Gilmore Girls crew didn't decide to do another season for those who find Lorelai annoying, they did it for us who keeps watching it again and again.
Maybe the group who would love what you share is big. Maybe it's small. But I bet you it'll be there if you search for it.
They are the ones you should care about, not the potential haters and shruggers. They are the ones who will miss out if you don't dare.
Think about your favorite book. Movie. Song. Painting. Photograph. T-shirt.
That feeling in your chest is there because someone dared to share. If they hadn't, you would never have known its brilliance. It would sit in someone's head or drawer or google drive account, and your heart would not have been touched by it.
What if what you make could be someone's favorite?
Sharing is about hearts and minds connecting through something you've created.
Isn't the thought of that absolutely marvelous? That I can read something you've written and see right into your heart? That we can see ourselves in each other, see the world painted with someone else's eyes?
I think creativity is as close as we get to understanding what it's like to be someone else.
Money and popularity becomes so incredibly unimportant when faced with the power of connection. But the truth is that if you touch enough hearts, it'll probably come your way anyhow. Still, it's not about the numbers. Every single person who connects with what you've made is important.
The world needs all of our truths to be shared. The beautiful and the ugly and the uncomfortable. We need to talk about what's inside of us. Through hearing your truth, my own will be affected.
Sharing is scary, but it's worth it.
I feared sharing because I feared rejection, but what I really craved was connecting. I wanted to try being on the other end. I've read so many books that made a deep rumble in my soul, that the thought of my words giving someone even a drop of that emotion, it was irresistible. It became a dream I held so close that the strength made me fear it never coming true. Which made me not want to try, because I believed rejection would be the end of my dream.
But then I understood that my dream is entirely my own and what the world thinks isn't the important part. I just have to look for the ones who care.
I realized not sharing my creativity was keeping me from connecting. It kept me silent and it stopped my dream from getting the chance to come true.
I was shutting out the world from my truth, and it made me lonely.
When my finger hovered over the SEND button on Facebook, seconds away from sharing my first blog post, I was sweating and shivering. I was dizzy and scared and felt sick, but I clicked anyway.
I did it because daring to share is just something I had to do. For myself and for the world.
Do you dare to share your creativity?
Do you hold back because you fear rejection, because you feel you need to live up to a certain standard, because you don't know if anyone wants what you made?
Do you share, but only the things that feel safe, hiding the bold ones, the ones that really matters to you?
Do you share, but the lack of attention makes you sad, because you too crave that connection?
If you do, here's my truth.
Your voice matters, because all of our voices matter. It won't matter to everyone, but it matters to the world and it will matter to some. But it's your job to share and share wide so those who'll love it can find it.
Go share your voice and share what you've made.
Let the world know who you are and what your truth is.