First, let’s define what doesn’t matter:
How much money you make from your creative work.
How many followers you’ve got.
Where you are in the “ranking” of writers, bloggers, creatives.
What people think about you.
What you think about your work.
Whether you will ever “make it”.
Under what circumstances you create.
What you create with.
What you get done today.
What you’ll get from your work.
Phew. Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s define what does matter:
That somebody needs what you’re doing. If you get paid – even better. (But never take any dime you make for granted. Whenever I receive a check from Medium, it’s a surprise. Every single time.)
That your influence is growing. If you have +1 follower than you had a month ago, you’re doing everything right.
That your skill is improving. If you’re a better writer/podcaster/creative than you were a month ago, you’re doing everything right.
That you sit your ass and try to do something every day. The effort is everything.
That you’re consistent. We would be nowhere if we didn’t show up.
That you love the process. There is no reward. It’s an illusion. If you don’t like the process, quit today. Please.
That you do what you can, with what you have, where you are. Anton Chekhov wrote his first stories living in a one-bedroom flat with 5 other people. There was noise everywhere and he wrote on napkins.
That you grow as a person. You receive that second, psychological salary.
That you are an honest creative. Because unless you are, nothing makes sense. We don’t want to read what you’d like to think – we want to know what you actually feel and think.
That you feel good about your work. Because if you do, so will we.
BONUS: That you create art. Art is anything that you give us with no intention other than that you want to change us for the better.
Sharing = loving.