Creative Work: What's The Point?
In the past couple of weeks, I've had a few friends express doubts and misgivings about their decisions to pursue "creative work" as a career. For whatever reason, this topic has come up a lot lately, and I have a feeling that's because it's such a common side effect of a creative life. We ask questions like, "Does it even matter?" and "What am I doing with my life?" and "Should I be doing something more important?"
I get it, because I've certainly been there. But rather than hash out some lengthy post about self-worth and self-love, I will cut right to the chase: Stop it. Don't do that to yourself. What you're doing, making, creating, and sharing with the world - it all matters. And it doesn't. But that's not really the point of it all. We'd drive ourselves completely mad if we measured things by how much they "matter."
My husband is a surgeon. He will, quite literally, spend his days actively saving the lives of babies for the next several decades. So yeah, I get it. I have totally fallen deep down into the trap of not feeling like I was doing something important, or something that mattered - at least professionally. But you've got to contribute in your own way, and follow whatever it is that grabs your heart and won't let go. For some people, this calling leads them to work that helps make our lives safer, or more easily lived, or more delicious, or more well-managed, or more educated. And some people, (I'm looking at YOU creatives. You artists, poets, singer-songwriters, photographers, writers, etc.); some people do work that simply helps make life worth living. And there's room for all of it. Keep on keeping on, friends.