I’ve recently read this wonderful book called Big Magic and written by Elizabeth Gilbert, and thought I should share with you a review of it. This is mainly because of how well it depicts applying your creativity in everything that you do and work on. I think the advice she gives is inspirational, and although most of the stories refer to the author’s work as a writer, the lessons can be easily applied to entrepreneurship if that is the path that you have chosen. The author draws out some crucial life lessons that she and her acquaintances have gained over the years in order to help the reader to live creatively beyond fear.
The chapter headings are powerful words – Courage, Enchantment, Permission, Persistence, Trust, Divinity – and the whole book is in fact a celebration of what we humans can achieve through the power of ideas. It is all about overcoming self-doubt and avoiding that little voice in your head that always looks for perfection. As an entrepreneur you’re starting on a journey where the most valued idea that you hold will be put out into the world and scrutinised by everyone. It is only natural to try to make it as good as possible. However, as Gilbert notes, at some point you’ve got to stop doubting yourself and share what you’re passionate about. People might like it. And if they don’t, they probably won’t hang it over your head forever.
“You’re afraid there’s no market for your creativity, and therefore no point in pursuing it. You’re afraid somebody else already did it better. You’re afraid everybody else already did it better. You’re afraid somebody will steal your ideas, so it’s safer to keep them hidden forever in the dark. You’re afraid you won’t be taken seriously(…)You’re afraid because nothing has ever gone well in your life, so why bother trying? You’re afraid of being a one-hit wonder. You’re afraid of being a no-hit wonder”- Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert
The author rejects the idea that some people are geniuses bound for success in life and that others aren’t. She recognises that every person is creative and that they can make a positive contribution to the world through their creativity. Big Magic is about leading a life that is driven by curiosity, not fear, and that’s something that we can all learn from. Being an entrepreneur will put you in the face of successes and failures, but you need to keep this in mind:
You can measure your worth by your dedication to your path, not by your successes or failures. – Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert
In conclusion, I would highly recommend that you read this book, but, if your assignments and exams are taking up all your time, you can just watch a TED talk from Elizabeth Gilbert and add the book to your summer reading list.