Frustration 101 or The Steps of Pursuing Creative Work
Figure out what you want to do. If you know this, you’re well on your way! It’s hard to narrow down what you want to do with your life. It doesn’t help that we’re supposed to know what it is when we’re 17 or 18 and are supposed to love doing this thing until we die.
Having the courage to pursue it. So you want to be a freelance kite designer, you say? Well unless you have really awesome family and friends, they are probably going to say “graphic design” or “advertising”. If you buck the norm to follow your passion, you are a brave soul indeed. Congratulations!
So now you know what you want and you are determined to pursue it. You put your energy into learning to draw, figuring out how kites work, building up a network of professional freelance kite designers, etc. You are over the moon ecstatic! The world is your oyster! Nothing can hold you back!
You make in roads. You start telling people you are a freelance kite designer, you even get business cards made. You make a website. You ARE a freelance kite designer. You become very proud of yourself (rightly so!). Then…
Things slow down. That job from your girlfriend’s cousin’s uncle? It didn’t pan out. People now know what you do. But you’re unsure of where to go next, what to do. You are eating pasta with ketchup for 3 nights in a row and when you look at your bank account you start hyperventilating.
You get discouraged. You are deflated. You wonder why you ever pursued something so ridiculous as kite designing. You question whether you even like kite designing anymore (you do, trust me, you’re just scared). You wonder why it’s so hard if this is what you’re meant to be doing.
This is the tricky part. This is the part where most people give up. Because it’s too hard. Because you’re sick of rejection. Because the reality of life is overtaking any creativity you might be feeling.
7. You continue. Maybe you get a shitty part time job to support yourself. Maybe you win the lottery. Somehow you get enough money to live so that you can pursue this. You work even harder, inventing new styles of kites! You approach people again. They give you work, just so you’ll stop hounding them (persistence pays off!).
8. You get paid to do the thing you love. You start to make a living from it. You get the satisfaction of knowing little kids everywhere are having a great time on a windy Saturday afternoon because you made a kite.