13 episodes

Coach and Creative Consultant, Shawn Taylor, provides microdoses of tips and tricks, motivation and inspiration, to navigate the creative life.

Surviving Creativity Shawn Taylor

    • Education
    • 4.9 • 17 Ratings

Coach and Creative Consultant, Shawn Taylor, provides microdoses of tips and tricks, motivation and inspiration, to navigate the creative life.

    Surviving Creativity Bonus Episode - Visualization: A Meditation

    Surviving Creativity Bonus Episode - Visualization: A Meditation

    Hello Family,

    I apologize for the delay in offering season two of "Surviving Creativity." I had major hardware trouble and am currently in midst of a data recovery project. So please hang on for a couple more weeks.

    Also, please forgive the sound quality of this episode. I recorded it on a ZOOM H1n, in an empty room of my new house--the room that will eventually become my studio. I haven't put up any soundproofing, nor did I have any of my real equipment. The H1n is great for meetings, but not really made for high quality audio to be shared with others. This being said, I felt the urge to drop an episode because I've been doing a ton of visualization/mediation with my clients and it has been such an amazing tool.

    I hope you all find this episode to be a value add. 



    • 15 min
    Get It Out There/Drop Those Jewels

    Get It Out There/Drop Those Jewels

    Creating something can be a difficult endeavor, letting go of it so others can experience it can be even more difficult. If it isn’t a journal entry, you have to prep yourself for your creation to be in the eyes/hands/ears/hearts of others. 
    What’s even more disconcerting about this step in the process, is that once it is out there, it is no longer ours. We created it. We may profit from it. But our audience, the people who will form relationships with and to our work will own it in a very unique and personal way. You did your job, let the audience do theirs, and don’t get too hung up about it. 
    Easier said than done. I know. 
    Produce two (2) things per month, for three (3) months and offer each and every one of  them to the public. The easiest way to do this is in blog form or TUMBLR, AO3 (for the geeky/nerdy set), or your social media. I understand that this is easier for certain art forms than others. The goal isn’t to be prolific, but to get into the rhythm of creating and releasing to the public, and being able to ask for and receive feedback in a healthy way. Not refreshing the page every couple of minutes to see what people are saying about what you’ve done. But reading and incorporating the feedback you agree with. Nothing will humble you more—and make you better at your craft—than good and honest feedback. No ad hominem zone. Another way to approach this is when you’ve completed a thing, make a release/distribution strategy part of your creative process. It looks like this: Your thing is done. Now ask yourself the following questions:  ‘Who is this for? How will it help them? Where do they “hang out?” What’s the best way to get this to them? Who can help me get this to them? When do I want them to have it?’ This is a rudimentary distribution plan. You got this. I believe in you. You deserve all the success—-but you won’t be successful if you don’t get it out there. 
    Until next season. 

    • 21 min


    Hello All, 

    I apologize for there being no tools and assignments. While I was recording this episode, I received some bad news via text and didn't have the energy. You might hear my voice shift and recognize a change in my demeanor. 

    I've made a pact with you to release weekly content, and I wanted to honor that. I will post these written assignments when I'm through this...family stuff. 



    • 19 min
    The Stunt Button

    The Stunt Button

    Tools and Assignments 
    Read: “In Defense of Kanye’s Vanity” by Heben Nigatu You can find it here.
    Please do: List your five greatest accomplishments. Not what society would deem great or accomplished, but five things you deem to be your greatest successes. After you have your five, contact two-three people to share them with. Whomever seems to be the most excited about your wins, engage them in a conversation around being a part of your “Brain Trust” as mentioned in Episode 4 (Ignition). Those who don’t seem as excited or are dismissive or are unsupportive, you might want to reevaluate your relationship with them.

    Workshop Information.
    As always, not everything is for everyone. But give it a try. You just might find some value in it. 
    Until next time…Peace. 

    • 20 min
    A Deadline Is A Promise

    A Deadline Is A Promise

    “You are worth every promise made to yourself. You are worth every personal deadline met.”
    -       Shawn Taylor
    I want you to give yourself a week—a week from the time you’ve finished listening to this episode. I then want you to look at your calendar and carve out seven (7) hours of uninterrupted time: one hour per day for seven (7) days, but not the same time every day. Some productivity coaches argue that you should do the same thing at the same time every day as to build a habit. I don’t want you to build a habit. I want to you to fuel yourself via intentionality. If you have a smartphone, set alarms for ten (10) minutes before your chosen hour of creative productivity. This will give you time to settle in. Then set beginning and ending alarms for your creative hour. Then I want you to set a goal for each hour. Any goal is fine, except for anything having to do with amounts: page numbers, minutes of music, etc. Make your goals more specific: I want to write this particular scene, I want to finish this bridge and chorus, heck, if you’re a martial artist: I want to work on my jab, hook, cross, elbow, knee combination. Any goal except for goals that have to do with an amount of something, a number of something. Here are the steps, disaggregated:
    1.   Give yourself one (1) week from the time you’ve finished listening to this episode—including the day you finished listening to this episode. Look at your calendar and schedule seven (7) uninterrupted hours: one (1) hour a day for seven (7) days to work on a project. But not the same times every day. Once you’ve scheduled your week you’ll…
    2.   Set alarms for ten (10) minutes before each of your creative productivity sessions. This will give you time to settle in and prepare. If ten (10) minutes causes you too much anxiety, reduce this to five (5) minutes. Once these alarms are set you’ll…
    3.   Set beginning and ending alarms for your daily one (1) hour creative productivity sessions. Remember: set one alarm to begin and another to end. When the ending alarm goes off, don’t continue on, even if you’re in a flow state. Complete the thought and then stop working. You’ve made a promise to yourself to work for one (1) hour. Don’t over-promise or overcommit. During your creative hour, make your goals hyper-specific, but don’t make them about amounts. Don’t make them about page numbers or minutes of music or what have you. Set the goal for a particular scene or lyric or panel of a comic book.
    4.   At the conclusion of your week, please let me know how this has worked for you. Email me at: hello@shawntaylor.net and leave the following information:

    + Name/Location (or remain anonymous)
    + The project you worked on (a painting, a piece of writing, etc.)
    + Your progress before your creative week
    + The results of your creative week
    I would really love to hear about the milestones you achieved. 
    Remember, not everything is for everyone. But give it a go. Y  ou just might find some value in it. 
    Until next time.  

    • 20 min
    Be Gentle With Yourself

    Be Gentle With Yourself

    (If the workshop poster doesn't appear in the show notes, please visit here.)

    As promised, here are the tools and assignments for this week’s episode. 
    Read  Daniel José Older’s essay, “Writing Begins with Forgiveness: Why One of the Most Common Pieces of Writing Advice is Wrong” here.  Please reflect on how you’ll incorporate this message into your life and practice.
    Your work, from this episode:
    I want to you work on noticing when you’re starting to get down on or doubt yourself as a creative. I want you to recognize your antecedent behaviors and actions—the things that you do before the full-on harsh self-critique. I want you to record the conditions/contexts that triggered the behavior. Then I want you to detail the behavior itself, how it impacts your work, your mindset, and others in your life. Once you’re able to do this, I want you to script a new way to react. Don’t care what medium you use, but try to craft new behaviors, responses, and feelings. By doing this, you’re able to readily imagine a new and more productive way to be.
    Remember, not everything is for everybody, but please carefully considered what we’ve just discussed. You may be surprised by just how valuable the information is to you. 
    Here is the poster for my workshop. You can register here.

    Until next time.


    • 16 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
17 Ratings

17 Ratings

chitownbetty ,

Listen to keep your creativity moving.

Experienced, approachable, and creative. Shawn’s podcast is like having a coach in your back pocket. He also pulls out some cool source materials and exercises to help you plan and think imaginatively, and most importantly, BIGGER.

MsSmittyB ,

Creative Inspiration

Taking creative risks requires courage and Shawn Taylor is a powerful coach and mentor. Each episode is a short, manageable pep talk that will get you making again.

Not only do I listen to this podcast every week, but I’ve looped my daughter in. The conversations we have, inspired by this series, have been invaluable.

Pep9898 ,

A Roadmap to a Happier, More Satisfying Life

Shawn Taylor understands the deep pleasure that comes from writing, making art, and doing creative work. He knows what it means to make things and put them out into the world. He also knows how easily day jobs and family obligations can fill up people’s time and make creative projects feel out of reach. This podcast is full of practical, actionable ideas to help you make time for the things you want to make.

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