Self-Doubt Versus Idea-Doubt

Graphic novel author and illustrator Kazu Kibuishi wrote a succinct description of the creative process that resonated with artists all over the world:

This is certainly my experience. The inspiration to start a project is always exciting, but doing the work can elicit crippling self doubt. In the end, I’m almost always proud of the results.

In his research, professor and best-selling author Adam Grant examines the difference between self-doubt and idea-doubt. Grant says self-doubt is paralyzing, but idea-doubt is energizing. Questioning our ideas motivates us to test, experiment, and refine. He says the key is to avoid the leap from step three to step four, to accept our terrible ideas without taking them personally. This is MUCH easier said than done, but the distinction can keep us moving forward.

– ST

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