How to Find Your Creative Calling
“If this idea… the idea of overcoming one fear a day scares you, then keep reading.”
I wrote this line three years ago.
I was doing a photo challenge. I asked Chase Jarvis, one of the best photographers in the world and the founder of Creative Live, “What should I do?”
I wanted to know how to take a good photo.
He asked me what I liked.
I said, “Sad people.”
So he told me to shoot through the lens of “connection.” So I went inside. And looked for my inner compass.
I went to eat.
Then I saw this man:
And I shot him.
I shot him before my daughter left for college. Before I became a stepdad. Before stand-up comedy. Before Trump. Before #metoo. Before phone addiction (sort of). Before a lot of things.
“That photograph is evidence,” Chase said. “It’s evidence that we’re all creative… Wildy.”
But not everyone believes that.
Because they’ve blocked it for too many years.
But you can get it back.
Chase explains how in his book, “Creative Calling: Establish a Daily Practice, Infuse Your World with Meaning, and Succeed in Work + Life.”
And he explains the DNA of creativity on my podcast. Here’s a list of everything we talk about. Including quotes from Chase and tips on how to start your daily creative process today:
- Giveaway announcement – [0:00]
- Episode Preview – [0:56]
- I introduce Chase Jarvis, one of the best photographers in the world and founder of Creative Live – [3:35]
- How Chase helped me hone my creative muscle three years ago – [4:32]
- “We’re all creative, wildly” – Chase Jarvis – [8:18]
- The wrong way to think about creativity – [8:48]
- “When you’re in your purest element of creativity, you’re not judging. You can’t be creative and judging at the same time.” – Chase Jarvis – [10:20]
- Three key principles of Chase’s book:
- 1. Everyone is creative
- 2. Creativity is not a skill. It’s a habit. It’s a process not a product.
- 3. Creativity is a muscle. – [13:08]
- How creating in small ways every day leads to the habit of creativity – [15:29]
- The myth of creativity: some people are creative and some people aren’t. Chase explains where this myth came from – [16:49]
- Proof that we are “self-expression machines.” And proof that society makes us scared to be creative – [19:11]
- I ask Chase about mastery – [21:19]
- Chase tells us what Creative Live is and what kind of classes they have available for you – [23:56]
- I ask Chase about fear and self-doubt- [24:51]
- How to get to know the things you’re supposed to be doing in this world. And how Chase figured this out for himself, too – [25:25]
- I ask Chase if building a business made him fearful of losing his roots in photography -[27:22]
- How to know if something is the right path for you – [28:05]
- Know when to shift directions. How to know if you’re following the flame in your life. Or not – [29:45]
- Why you’re loved ones don’t support your dreams and want you to do what’s safe…- [30:14]
- “Now is the riskiest time in human history to do the thing that has always been safe. Because the world is changing so fast. If you don’t have a live and connection and a passion for what you’re doing, you’re going to be isolated. You’re going to be lonely. You’re going to be sick. It’s not safe to do what everybody else wants. The safest thing, in your journey, is to be inexcusable unapologetically you.” – Chase Jarvis – [31:00]
- We look at how Chase combined two passions and became the best in the world at the intersection of his two passions – [32:22]
- Why society doesn’t teach us to be creative – [34:01]
- The power of experimentation – [35:21]
- I ask Chase how he initially started developing his internal flame and love for photography – [36:00]
- Why Chase doesn’t give The A-Z steps to find your own path… because everyone’s path is different and unique. – [39:40]
- How a teacher killed Chase’s dreams. And shift led his identity. – [42:00]
- How Chase rediscovered his creativity 20 years after his teacher crushed him – [44:00]
- How to be more in tune with yourself. Chase says how he realized he was denying his creative self – [47:40]
- How Chase taught himself how to take pictures – [48:20]
- Tip: learn from virtual mentors – [50:29]
- Why you have to document your work. And analyze for improvement. – [52:40]
- Chase talks about trading food for the ability to learn – [55:00]
- “Learning gets easy when you’re doing something that resonates internally” – Chase Jarvis – [55:56]
- When you start anything, you’re going to suck. Embrace this. – [57:03]
- Measure how much you love something. vs how much you’re frustrated by something. Then use this to know where the flame is for you – [58:24]
- The importance of having the right community… one where you feel welcome – [1:00:14]
- How to develop a community around your work – [1:01:18]
- Article recommendation: “A Thousand True Fans” by Kevin Kelly – [1:01:46]
- Every path is different. The best time to start a new creative endeavor is 10 years ago. And today – [1:02:28]
- The advantage and danger of having competition in your community – [1:03:25]
- The importance of asking yourself, “How does this make me feel?” about a person or community or task, job, creative project, etc. – [1:04:21]
- Why not paying attention to how people and situations can make you feel leads you down the wrong path – [1:05:12]
- How to tell who your people are. And who they aren’t. – [1:06:09]
- Listen to your calling. “It’s not always a trumpet,” Chase said. “It’s a whisper and that whisper is inside of you. And it doesn’t look like a map. Because a map shows you, ‘I’m here and I’m going to follow this path and I’m going to end up here.’ It’s way more a compass. And a compass is just an arrow that gets you in a direction.” – [1:07:15]
- How Chase dealt with burnout at the peak of his career – [1:08:23]
- The first photo-sharing app was created by Chase. He said, “That ended up being one of my biggest professional successes and failures at the same time” – [1:10:18]
- I ask Chase what mistakes he made in creating his photo-sharing app – [1:11:38]
- Six critical lessons to learn from Chase – [1:14:30]
- I ask Chris how someone who’s 40, 50, 60 years old can start to listen to their inner compass when it’s been blocked for so long – [1:15:24]
- Step 1: call yourself a creative. Math is creative. Science is creative. No matter what you do, somehow you’re creating in small ways – [1:17:08]
- Chase gives some experiments that you can do to start today – [1:18:42]
- Why this book resonated with me – [1:21:45]
- Rejection therapy. Try this to advance in ability faster – [1:22:34]
- “Being willing to be uncomfortable is a huge opportunity.” – Chase Jarvis – [1:24:42]
- Proof that “people want to help you when you do crazy shit”- [1:26:46]
- The one exercise Chase does every morning to make himself get out of the comfort zone – [1:28:22]
- I thank Chase for coming on the show and breaking down the DNA of creativity. And why his book is the Bible of creativity – [1:29:05]
Links & Resources:
- Read “Creative Calling: Establish a Daily Practice, Infuse Your World with Meaning, and Succeed in Work Life” by Chase Jarvis
- Watch The Chase Jarvis Live show at creativelive.com
- Follow Chase on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram
- Subscribe to Chase Jarvis’ YouTube channel for new videos every week
- See Chase Jarvis’ projects, blogs and photography at ChaseJarvis.com