Sitting in the Suck & Being Okay with Failing: How to Make Ideas Happen

being okay with failing when you are stuck in a creative rut

We’ve had a lot of crazy ideas on our family journey. Quitting our jobs to make funny videos on the internet. Starting a weekly podcast. Making a family board game from scratch. But here’s the secret. Sometimes those crazy ideas suck… A LOT. Sometimes you have a moment where you think, “Is this really what I’m doing with my life? What if I massively fail?” And then you think about walking away and quitting, no matter how much time you’ve put in.

Suck Leads to Success

So how do you get past that? How do you go from creative idea to execution and not let the suck weigh you down? You’ve got to sit in the suck and embrace it as part of your process, because on the other side of suck is success. On the podcast we go through some of our process in more detail, but here are a few quick tips: 

  1. Clearly define the goal and make it attainable. The attainable part is important. For example, I set a goal to do an unassisted pullup and I’ve given myself a YEAR. I would be setting myself up for failure if I expected myself to get my chin over a bar, an action that’s alluded me my whole life, in one week. 
  2. Identify the discomfort. For me? When I’m sitting down to write, or trying to make progress on a project, there’s a moment when the momentum of the start… just stops. You get this gnawing feeling in your stomach. It’s the twinge of, “you know if you walk away right now this doesn’t count as failure because you never actually tried.” That gut feeling is the fear. Don’t let it win. 
  3. Set a timer to keep on track. Set a timer before going knee deep if you feel like you are in the suck process of your project. Set it for 7 minutes. Write for 7 minutes more, walk for 7 minutes more, or brainstorm for 7 minutes more. On the other side of 7 minutes is the progress. It’s not always perfect… in fact, it never is. But it’s more than you did last time. Tiny, moments like this are the deal. 

Listen to more about how we get through the ‘suck’ and actually try to finish what we start on this week’s podcast. Also if you are interested in my latest crazy idea, the HolderHamper, you can sign up to get email updates for when we launch:

Sit Back and Enjoy!

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