Writer’s BlockThe risk of failure will always be present when you act instinctively or intuitively. Creating original ideas involves risks; accepting and understanding this fact is crucial to being successful.

All too often we may be tempted to run headlong into a project with a head full of positive affirmations such as, “I will succeed; this will be perfect”, avoiding the thought of the risks involved. This is not courage or bravery. When we deny the possibility of failure, we deny our own thoughts and feelings; not only stifling the creative process, but also leaving us ill-prepared for any negative outcome.

If you want to achieve something new, something great, it is absolutely crucial that you accept failure as a natural occurrence on the road to success. Once you accept this, you can actually begin to have fun with the idea and open your mind to new experiences.

Gaining experience as a director will lead to a gradual increase in your confidence, in not only accepting risks, but taking them and being fully prepared for the consequences. As your confidence blossoms, you will gain a peace of mind that will enable you to intuitively channel deeper into your creative mind.

It is the denial of the inherent risks in the creative process and subsequent angst-ridden self-doubt that can cause the infamous, “writer’s block” many of us know too well. Viewing risk-taking as an adventure rather than some maligned ordeal, can lead you to great things.

Embrace the Lessons That Failure Brings

Thomas Edison once said “I have not failed, I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” This is a great way of looking at things and it teaches us to look at a failure as something that can actually help us on our way towards success.

Instead of avoiding the fear of failure, embrace it. Imagine all of the ways in which you could possibly mess up and explore every avenue. Not only will this alleviate tension and aid the creative process, it will also ensure that you are prepared for negative scenarios so that you can take them in your stride. By conjuring up ideas of all of the terrible situations you might find yourself in should you fail, you will begin to think of ways in which you can deal with these outcomes; formulating effective contingency plans and perhaps even coming up with some great creative ideas in the process.

With experience comes a kind of confidence that can only help to bolster our abilities. Imagining worst case scenarios is almost like living through them and experiencing them. Having the courage to face these fears will provide you with a kind of imaginative experience that will in turn, boost your confidence and possibly even reduce the likelihood of you even making mistakes in the first place.

Putting on a brave face and acting as though risk isn’t a part of the equation, can soon become a dangerous game of dodging the reality of the situation. It may provide temporary relief, but this never lasts and you will soon find yourself allocating more and more of your mental resources to avoidance and denial.

Own Your Mistakes and Utilize Them

Everything you create is your own and it is important to look at mistakes not necessarily as, “wrong” or “bad”, or in need of replacement. Writing is an organic process involving both your thoughts and emotions, so it should not be treated as some robotic or regimented task.

Instead of approaching your errors as problems that must be solved, try looking at them as opportunities for exploration into new ideas. This is not a cold, sterile process; this is an imaginative and artistic endeavour. Approaching issues with open curiosity instead of catastrophizing, will afford you a more honest view of your work, which will likely be reflected in the quality of what you produce.

What Can We Learn From Natural Talent?

There is no doubt that talent exists in many individuals. Talent can be the difference between a good filmmaker and a great one; however it can sometimes be trumped by the potential of a focused and determined mind. Practising a more balanced approach to your work will enabled you to enjoy what you do and the results will clearly speak for themselves.

In an interview, Tiger Woods once said “People have no idea how many hours I’ve put into this game”, and he is a shining example of what can be achieved with a driven mind that can approach a process rationally.

The key isn’t to simply apply oneself in quantity, but to do so unflinchingly and unselfconsciously in a manner that is conducive to the creative process. Again, removing these layers of distraction will keep your mind free and open to new ideas, not to mention the motivation needed to express them.

Some people are truly gifted and there will always be geniuses and genetic freaks, but tackling a project decisively and intelligently can certainly pay dividends.

Another example of this are creative ideas that come in spurts, and in those moments where we are able to express ourselves with a mind that is acting purely out of instinct and intuition.

Perception and Judgement

Sydney Pollack once said, “If directors cannot tell the difference between a fake bit of behaviour, they have no business directing. It’s not something that can be learned. You just have to know the difference between truth and fiction. How do you teach somebody the difference? You can’t. It’s something intuitive, you just know it. It’s called perception. Somebody is or isn’t perceptive. That’s all you have as a director, the ability to recognize reality in behaviour”.

This quote rings true. A director’s ability is based on their perception and judgement – skills which they must take it upon themselves to establish, rather than have some guru figure walk them through every step of their development. Intuition and perception always have room for improvement, regardless of their current level.

I believe these skills are more likely to improve if you put yourself into environments that are out of your comfort zone, but surrounded by a support network. All individuals have the potential to possess these intuitive skills, but they must first be honed or they will remain untapped. Underestimating the ritual of planning, chasing and  conquering challenging goals, disallows our powers to evolve, instead causing them to deteriorate.