Mistakes & Perfection in Life & Creativity

inks 6We all are afraid of making mistakes in life and in our creativity – but the truth is we will. Why does making a mistake impact us so much, well, it starts in school, most likely, even earlier.

We make a mistake and the answer we’ve said out loud is wrong, the other students scoff at us and we feel bad because we have failed. We get frightened to take chances or to try something new; something we don’t think we’ll be good at. Or, even worse, we are afraid to try something we KNOW we won’t be good at. We never get the chance to improve our skills. The risk of failure is too great; we perceive the consequences to be high. It’s the way the system is set up and it’s working against our creativity. It can be really hard to overcome and if that fear is re-enforced by someone close to us then it becomes part of the story we tell ourselves.

The more I create the less I fear mistakes! I like to ask myself, what is the worst thing that could happen? What is the actual threat to me? I may “waste” some supplies. I may “waste” several hours of my day. But, in actuality, those supplies, that time is not really wasted because I learned something. I learn best when I have to figure out what didn’t work – it’s the mindset we need to reset.

When I explain the jewelry making process to new beaders, I always tell them that if you string up a necklace and don’t like it, it’s not wasting your time to take it apart. It’s the mindset that we have to get the product right on the first try. That my friend is false and total bullshit! It’s just not going to happen. It’s in the imperfect process that feeds and nurtures our creativity.

glitterWhat does one deal with our old mental programing of being scared about the consequences of “failure” in our art? It’s a simple formula that takes a lot of practice – reminding ourselves that art is the safest place for your experiments. Creativity is an experiment and it’s for your enjoyment. There are no grades or consequences for any of our attempts.

Self care + creativity + reminding ourselves it’s an experiment = getting more relaxed with our art.

It’s not your art that is the thing that telling you it’s bad – it’s your old programming and fear of trying something new that feeding you the bullshit. Your art loves you and is always there for you to nurture you. It’s your visual scrapbook of finding your authentic voice/style. You have to practice and when you look back you’ll be able to see the progress!

my muse 2Self care starts with recognizing those “perfectionist” thoughts are coming from a part of you who has been hurt by trying something new and is really scared. All that part knows is trying = failing and feeling bad. She is trying to protect you. Have compassion for that little part of you who is scared. Look inside you and try to “see” what that part looks like and reassure them that your altered book is a safe place. This will take time but the voice will quiet.

art journal example 2 (1 of 1)





Do a page and write down all your fears to get them out of your system, then paint or gesso over what you’ve written. Now write the ways youfre going to trust yourself in this process.art journal example 1 (1 of 1)


Creativity is an experiment that works sometimes & sometimes it won’t meet your expectations. With every page you can check yourself for old recordings you’ve adopted as your truth. Check in to see if that old programming is just a scared part of you to shower love on.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: