Creative Courage

I love the feeling of making a big creative commitment, knowing that I have to lean into trust, rely on my knowledge and skills, and take lots and lots of action to follow through.

It reminds me of when I used to go cliff diving on Catalina Island when I was younger, jumping off a large rock into the ocean and hoping I landed the right way.


Once the commitment is fully made, there’s this feeling of being all-in. All doubt is shoved aside since there’s no point in entertaining such thoughts after the decision to go forward is made.

Post-commitment all of my energy flows in the same direction – towards completion. I internally switch off any modes of thinking that might create internal friction. If such thoughts try to surface, they get lasered into oblivion.

I keep a careful watch on my emotions during this time, looking for any emotional drift from solid and sustainable motivation. If I spot any issues, I move to address them immediately. I do what it takes to keep my motivation in the sweet spot for consistent creative flow.

I’m in this mode now. Today I recorded and published the 10th lesson of the Amplify course. It’s a 21-minute lesson, and it took me a good 7 hours to fully design, record, edit, and publish it, including writing a one-page summary of the course and an exercise for the Amplify Workbook. I started shortly after 5am and finished just after noon.

Daily Commitment

This will be part of my daily flow for the next 7 weeks – every day including weekends – till the course is 100% complete.

In addition to creating 60+ audio lessons, I’ll also be hosting 8 live calls for course participants, one per week, starting this Wednesday, March 10. Bringing so many creative people together to connect, share, and inspire each other will surely be a lively adventure.

Many years ago the scope and speed of a project like this would have scared me. Now I love it. It feels edgy, fun, and engaging.

This course isn’t designed in advance. I’m co-creating it with the brave souls who’ve enrolled, one lesson at a time. When I woke up this morning at 5am, I didn’t know what lesson I’d create today. By 6am I was already well immersed in designing it.

I love how this project demands that I stay focused on it for many hours each day. I have to take it one step at a time and keep driving each step forward to completion. There’s at least one new deliverable every day, and it’s not done till it’s published. I can’t just put in what feels like enough time and call it a day. I have to finish and publish, or the creative part of the day isn’t over.

With this kind of rhythm, any misaligned thoughts or feelings are not to be entertained. The mental and emotional drive can only go forward, not backwards or sideways. I find that the commitment itself takes care of that pretty well. My mind knows the daily goal.

It’s very satisfy to work in such an immersive way, to fully commit myself to one of the biggest and deepest creative projects of my life. So much stems from that commitment. By telling my mind that we are absolutely positively moving forward on this, every part of me gets on board.

This is challenging at times, but it feels like I have all the mental and emotional capacity I need. This also requires tremendous trust. I have to trust that the ideas will flow each day. I have to trust that every single day there will be abundant fresh waves of inspiration and that they’ll always be there for me.

I don’t just want to create adequate lessons for this course. I want to create lessons that are interesting, original, insightful, profound, brilliant, unique, and often playful. I want to listen to a lesson after it’s recorded and think: Damn… that was incredible… how did I do that? I want to twist and squeeze every drop of creative essence I have and pour it into this course. I want to record with great emotional energy and expressiveness. And I want to enjoy the experience, day after day. I want to be full of satisfaction and gratitude after publishing each lesson, anticipating how beautiful it will be when people get to listen to it.

Creative Courage

I feel that the key to all of this is creative courage – to finally have the guts to go all-in with a project that I feel ought to be created. This includes choosing a project that’s in my edgy zone. It’s not so easy that I already know how to do it, like plucking a piece of low-hanging fruit off a tree. It seems possible, but it’s going to require that I do my best. A half-hearted effort won’t suffice.

I feel immensely pleased with the first 10 lessons, and the feedback rolling in has been extremely positive, with some people saying they’ve already gotten their money’s worth from the course. I’m really pouring my heart and soul into this, with some lessons making me cry while I design them. This is definitely not just a mental-level experience. It’s a potent journey through creative space, and that can be emotionally intense. It’s like I’m taking all of the emotional energy that flowed through me during nearly 30 years of creative work and infusing it into this course. It’s potent!

I also like that the invitation to join the course requires creative courage to accept. This is not a course for everyone. It’s for people who hear the call to do creative work, and they have the courage to say yes to it. It takes guts to commit yourself to a major deep dive like this, knowing that you’re going to emerge from it a different person – a person who is going to create ripples in the world.

I feel like the real purpose of the Amplify course is to fill people’s hearts and minds with so much creative inspiration and motivation that they experience a major upgrade in their creative courage… and this energy must then flow forth in a powerful fountain of original creative expression.

Do you have the guts to join us?

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Steve Pavlina

Steve Pavlina is an American self-help author, motivational speaker and entrepreneur. He is the author of the web site and the book Personal Development for Smart People.

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