I’ve been thinking about the creation process of Driftless Woolens and what it took for me to actually believe I could start something like that. My dream business wasn’t born overnight. There was a lot of back and forth going on inside of me before I had the confidence to pursue my goal.
Creating is something we are all meant to do. Making, designing, even thinking about ideas are the most basic forms I could think of for creating. Everyone creates, whether they realize it or not.
I am an avid knitter, but a casual one. When I was young, very few of my friends knew I liked to knit. I created quietly, for my own personal enjoyment and satisfaction. Not many people knew that the scarf or hat I wore was something I made myself. I was content with keeping it to myself, though. It was my own little world of creativity where I could try new ideas and play with color and texture, but not worry about what someone else might think of what I made.
When products or ideas are shared, it is not only the creation that is on display, it is the creator as well. Suddenly it is now being seen by someone else who will have opinions of it. It is now being judged, and those judgments are a reflection of its creator, well received, or not.
I didn’t want to be graded on my work because I had created for myself, not for somebody else. But then as I got older I realized how I felt connected to others’ creations. There were songs, books, artwork…ideas that someone had shared with the world…that made a significant difference in my life. Did I care about anything I had created enough to want to share it with others? Maybe, I thought. But someone’s already done that. Will what I create even matter?
And this is where creation goes along with courage. If the creator truly cares about and believes in their work, why wouldn’t they want to share it with others so they can enjoy it too?
Staying away from creating because of a fear that it’s already been done before is a lie we tell ourselves. Thinking that we simply lack the courage to produce something worthwhile restricts our natural need to create.
C.S. Lewis said, “Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.”
Don’t be afraid of sharing something you love creating. I tell that to myself, and I offer that to you, fellow creator. We can’t keep our gifts to ourselves (well, I guess you could, but that would be considered selfish, don’t you think?).
We have to create and have courage to show the world, or maybe just our own small corner of it, what we have made…and what we are made of.