It’s tough to be a creator. Many creators feel unseen, unappreciated, or misunderstood. But as a creator myself—one who has felt those things and more—I’ve found that I can find comfort and perspective in the words of other creators.
These 5 quotes from creators can help put everything in perspective when you start feeling the weight of creating.
“Wonder is the beginning of wisdom.”
Creativity is all about wonder. It’s about seeing the world in a different way. It’s about imagining how things could be better, and then finding ways to make it happen. Creativity has an element of magic to it: at some point, how something is made, and why it is so powerful, is virtually impossible to explain.
The power in this quote comes from realizing that wisdom—having the answers, finding the solutions, learning powerful lessons, enacting meaningful change—begins with wonder. When we tap into the wonder that inspires us to create, we can change the world.
You don’t have all the answers, and that can feel discouraging. But you have what you need to find the answers, and that brings hope. You have passion, you have love, you have creativity, and you have wonder. Use those things, and you can bring new wisdom into your life and into the world.
“Have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it.”
This pairs nicely with another perspective-building quote by a creator, this one by Voltaire: “Perfect is the enemy of good.”
Objective perfection is a myth. Trying to achieve perfection is going to end in disappointment, every time. And worse: it might end with you not finishing the project, or even giving up on creating entirely.
Look, if you’re a perfectionist, you aren’t alone, especially in the creative world. Creators pour their hearts and souls into their work. When you create, you’re putting a piece of yourself out into the world. It’s vulnerable. It’s scary. And you want it to be perfect and beyond reproach.
But trust me (and Salvador Dali): trying to reach perfection isn’t going to help anyone. And the sooner you realize and accept that, the sooner you’ll be willing and able to move forward with your creative projects—flaws and all.
“You have power over your mind — not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.”
Many times, discouraging thoughts can come from feeling out of control. You can’t control how other people will receive what you create. You can’t control how well something you create will sell. Anything that exists outside of you is something you have no control over.
But you do have control over your own mind, always. You can control your thoughts. You can design your thoughts so that they serve you, so that they help you get where you want to go.
Trying to control outside events will only bring frustration and disappointment. Learning to control your own thoughts will bring discipline, confidence, and contentment. All of these things will contribute to your creative efforts.
Control what you can. Accept what you can’t. That will empower you to “create happy” in your life.
“Don’t be pushed by your problems. Be led by your dreams.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
To me, this quote highlights one of the big differences between love and fear, which are both important concepts for creatives to understand. Creatives need to learn to reject fear and work from love, if they’re ever going to create the happiness they’re looking for.
The first part of the quote, “don’t be pushed by your problems,” encourages us to not let fear be in charge. Fear pushes us away from things we don’t want. Fear is important, under certain circumstances, but it’s not the most powerful motivator for creation and change.
Love, on the other hand, is. This is what it means to “be led by your dreams.” Instead of running away from something you fear, you’re running toward something you love. This positive, optimistic mindset can make all the difference when you’re trying to create something that inspires positive change in your life and in the world.
“Now and then it’s good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy.”
Happiness is the ultimate goal. It’s what we all want and what we all work for. In fact, Design.org exists to help creatives and aspiring creatives “create happy” in their lives.
But every once in a while, it’s important for creatives to stop and recognize the happiness they already have.
Recognize the joy you get from creating. Be grateful for the opportunity you have to create, and for the people that have helped you get where you are today. Savor your relationships. Design thoughts that make you happy. Reevaluate the path you’re on and make sure you’re going the way you want to go. Do things that make you happy today. Laugh, relax, play, dance. Savor your food, express love, smell the flowers, look at the stars. Live a happy life—it’s yours for the taking.
Even as we’re pursuing long-term happiness, it’s possible to choose happiness along the way.
These quotes from creators can help keep everything in perspective, something that’s invaluable on those days when my confidence is low and I feel like giving up. By taking in and using inspiration from other creators, you’ll be more empowered to make your own creations that will one day inspire others.
Check out some sources for more great quotes by and for creatives:
- 50 Life Changing Quotes for Creatives
- 25 Inspirational Quotes for Creatives
- 10 Positive Quotes to Inspire Creativity
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