Trying to stretch myself

I’m beginning to feel like I’m entering a phase where I’m really going to have to stretch myself – take some risks, try different approaches, spend a bit of time doing things that go wildly wrong in order to find something that works a little bit better, so I’ve been setting challenges, such as the Creative Pact (which I’m loving) but also feeling I may need regular prodding to try different things, so I’ve signed up for the free 6-month creative coaching email course, Creative Pathfinder. I haven’t read any reviews of it (seems to be new) but it sounds like it may spark off ideas and just get me thinking about my work, where I’m trying to get to and how on earth I can actually make it to that destination.

So I had the first installment this evening, which asked the question ‘What’s your ambition for yourself?’ – the aim is to work out whether your ambition is to be rich, respected by your peers, loved by the general public, etc. – all the many and varied aspects of fame. I still have trouble with this question, as I have had with it in various books over the past few years. It used to be pretty clear-cut, but not so much any more. I still have ambition, but it’s been battered a bit by pressure from various sources and I’m a little confused really about what I want to achieve with my work. I’ve done a lot of thinking and soul-searching of late anyway with my latest piece and various discussions over that, and I think that’s raised some useful thoughts, but I need to process a bit more I think before I quite come up with an answer. For now, the simple answer is that composing is something I need to do. I need to do it regularly and I need to do it well and be proud of the work I produce, otherwise I tend towards the insane. But that’s just a starting point. Hoping this week I can gradually think through what my ambition looks like now so I can make friends with it again.

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