As a creative, you will be familiar with the not-so-secret ingredient that fuels phenomenal work and lasting fulfillment in the wild, beautiful world of creating—COURAGE!

Courage doesn’t just mean conquering fears. It’s also about embracing the mess and chaos of creating, daring to dive deep, and stepping outside your status quo to try something new, especially when you may experience doubt or when you lack motivation.

A few months back, I worked with a client who is an artist. She had established herself in a particular art style, and although she was making good money with commissions, she was bored creatively. She recognised that she needed the courage to step outside her patterns and try a new approach. I encouraged her to get back in touch with her creative passion and to give herself permission to play. She did exactly that and now she is loving her new creative style and adventures which have opened up new opportunities and networks.

Creativity is generative. It thrives on pushing boundaries and exploring the uncharted. It requires openness and an acceptance that something new is possible. But that exploration can get messy or feel scary. Ideas take unexpected turns, frustrating roadblocks might be encountered, and sometimes, the idea of beginning can be an obstacle.

That’s where courage comes in. It’s the fire that compels you to pick up the paintbrush or put pen to paper, even when inspiration feels like a distant memory. It’s the belief that tells you your creative voice matters.

Remember, the most groundbreaking, soul-stirring work often emerges from venturing outside your comfort zone.

Taking risks, experimenting with new techniques, and letting go of the need for perfection are the hallmarks of true creative courage.

It’s not about recklessness but about embracing the unknown with a curious mind and an open spirit.

The more we tap into our courage, the stronger we become. Every scary leap and every vulnerable expression builds resilience and fuels our creative fire. Eventually, we discover a wellspring of ideas within, a source that gets richer and more vibrant with each courageous exploration.

Below, I have shared a few tips on how courage is a resource that we often overlook:

  • Start small: Don’t try to write a magnum opus overnight. Set achievable challenges, experiment with new approaches, and celebrate even the smallest victories.
  • Embrace the mess: Creativity isn’t linear. Accept that your process will be messy and full of twists and turns. The magic often happens in the unexpected detours.
  • Cultivate playfulness: Approach your creative endeavours with a sense of wonder and exploration. Give yourself permission to experiment, have fun with mistakes, and see where the journey takes you.
  • Connect with your source: Whether it’s meditation, prayer, spending time in nature, or simply quieting your mind, find ways to tap into your wellspring of creativity.
  • Build a supportive community: Surround yourself with other brave creatives who inspire and challenge you.
  • Remember, rejection is redirection: Not everyone will resonate with your work. That’s okay! See criticism as feedback and an opportunity to learn and refine your vision.

The creative journey is an adventure, and courage is an underrated and vital resource. It’s the force that propels us forward, that helps us tap into our full potential, and that ultimately leads us to a place of deep creative satisfaction.


Monica O’Brien is a professionally trained and accredited Coach and founder of Creative Edge Coaching She blogs on issues about creativity and small business development for conscious artists and business entrepreneurs. 


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