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Creative Calling

Lesson 2 of 14

Hear Your Call

Chase Jarvis

Creative Calling

Chase Jarvis

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Lesson Info

2. Hear Your Call

Lesson Info

Hear Your Call

So I shared with you earlier that I got way off track, right? 10 years or more? Um, hundreds of thousands in student debt. I also got very sick. I don't talk about this very much publicly, but from the outside I looked very well, but I was. I was not healthy. Appear. I had crazy inner ear infections that affected my balance. All of this was because I was denying my creativity. My friend, Bring a Brown says, You know, it's not that creativity is something that you have or you don't or you use your choose not to. If you don't use it, I mean, this is fundamental to who we are. If you don't use it, it gets toxic. And if it's toxic, that shows up and you in your life in all kinds of different ways. So we need to be in charge of letting it out, and anybody relate to this concept that there is. There's a gap between where you are right now and where you want to be pretty common. I believe that what we're talking about here, both in the big idea and the tactics in this class and in the book ar...

e the thing to reduce the gap. Ira Glass talks about the creative gap. That's like you're drawing a picture that the thing you see like Oh, I'm going to sketch this shot a drew right here. And then you're halfway through and you're realizing that the picture that I had in my mind of my ability to sketch Drew does not look anything like when I'm putting on this paper. Creative gap. Okay, there's also a gap in our lives. The concept of mastery, of mastering the ability to see in your mind and create. That is a very, very powerful thing. We'll get into a little bit later. I have mastered photography. I know what it feels like to be a master to be able. You can tell me any picture. I could make that picture. Given the right amount of time and money space, I could make the picture. I also have the very good fortune. I can't say that I've mastered life, but I'm doing the thing that I'm supposed to be doing on this planet right now building a company that serving tens of millions of people. It didn't come with that. I mean, look at these bags under my eyes for gun SEKs, right? It didn't come without a lot of pain and work and also joy. But it's possible. Okay? And I'm not always there. I want to show. I veer off, I get lost. I've talked about it before. I talked about how I was bound up really good and tight before I started writing the book just because I'd been in a different head space for a couple of years. So I would like to just do a quick survey. Who knows what they're supposed to be doing in life? There's a gap who knows? Raise him up real high. This is a survey. I'm gonna put that at 40% so I would expect to see who doesn't know 10% of your not raising your hands. You, sir, in the blue cap. Would you stand up and tell us what it is? Did you do you know where do you not know? I don't know. OK, uh, let's let's get Do we have a mic for this gentleman? One's coming. All right, So tell us who you are, and when he tells us who has were going to say Hi. And his name. Okay. Making what? Did you hear that? Yep. Making it sound like in a meeting here. I'm Dan Flocks, Hide and Fox. Cool. You know what you're supposed to be doing? No. So recently, I decided to leave my 90,000 year job, and I tried to do something different. What are you doing? That's crazy. $90,000 is a lot of money. Aren't you gonna like What about your house payment? What about your mortgage? And, like, 90 grand is a lot of money. Why would you ever leave that and that I probably would have left it sooner if I wasn't asking myself to send questions for years. Here's the cool thing. We're all in this together. You guys, right? Does anybody sound like what Dan Fox sounds like in their head? We're gonna work on that. Thank Dan Fox or sharing. Appreciate you. Yeah. Dan Fox is now gonna pass the mic to someone who knows what they're supposed to be doing. Put your hand up nice and high, you know? Yeah, it's easy. Just hand the mic to the guy next to you guys. You have friends. He knows he's figured it out. Tell us your name. Josh Gray. Hey, Josh Chase. Hey, Yo, Um, yeah. This is actually a long journey of figuring out what my purpose is and why I do what I do, Which kind of ended up in a mission statement for my personal self, which is telling stories that inspire give hope and cause action. So nothing, but yeah, I mean, years of rolling through that and figuring that out and you asking questions, starting right where you were at, That's where I was at, like, five years ago. It's really developed into that. That's right. I think Dan Fox has handcuffed himself to you. Excellent. Um, thank you for sharing, Josh. Um, so where are we are all in this together, right? And the fact that we're about to go on this journey together and the fact that you just did this lovely little introduction, uh, about you know what your mission statement is to me. That's another word for values. A list. Let's here a little bit. Why don't you talk to me? Just give me three or four values that you understand its core to who you are and what you want to be doing with your life. Just just don't overthink it. Just give me a couple. I just think people matter. People. Yeah, people, you gets humanity. Humanity? Yep, I've heard of Yeah, story is what I think connects humans and build a bridge of empathy and understanding. And I'm giving you where it's so What I'm hearing is empathy, humanity, connection, understanding these air core values. How many of us have a set of core values that we know and we've written down and we can recognize I put that 1/3 for 2/3 of you. This is a really core thing. It's a really amazing opportunity. And here's the cool thing. If you don't know, your life is about to get way better. It's such a fundamental thing. And yet this is part of what made me write this book. It's start creativelive and do this with you all today is that we're not taught any of this. We're taught word literally taught to memorize the multiplication tables. The state capitals. It's fine, it's fine. And I want to throw rocks. I promised they wouldn't. But what about your personal core values? Right to me, This is a really important thing because this is what's gonna guide you along your path for the next 0 10 or 20 years. It's OK for core values to change, so you can sit down. Just thank you very much. Grander plans for Josh If you have a phone or a notebook right down the 1st 2 or three words that come to mind now you don't have to. If you don't want to, it's fine. Maybe you've got in your head, but it's a good it's gonna It's gonna be a nice centering exercise for us to go forward today, and we're gonna listen to that nice tool jackhammering outside while we do it. Nothing to relax you like someone saw in concrete outside. I'm going to just say some words. You don't have to put these down, but if you're stuck honesty, family, integrity, achievement, it's okay to have achievement, ambition, stability, comfort, awareness. This is just a handful of words that I think can help guide your decision, because if stability is something that you see, and that's if you ranked these and that's really, really high up on your list because you've probably done the Myers Briggs or the any a gram or whatever. What's really important is we don't like the world. Doesn't need Onley Cowgirls, right? It needs it needs it needs people who desire stability but financial emotional. But gosh, if we Onley indexed on emotional stability, we wouldn't have Jean Michel Basquiat or we wouldn't have Andy Warhol wouldn't have a lot of different people and cultures. So the fact is we need everyone and we need you to be Imagine a world where everybody was doing the thing that they're supposed to be doing and the sounds ideal. But we're on Lee. Well, let me just back up for a second. For those of you who said that there was a gap between where you are right now and where you want to be, I'm telling you right now this is the part we know this is a roller coaster, cause core values, your life's about to get better. And now I'm going to tell you that the gap between where you are and where you wanna be it could be 10,000 hours of work from right now. Everybody was just got really bombed. But I tell you when you are 10,000 miles away. 10, hours. 100 hours. That sounds scary and frustrating. But here is the truth. You may be only one decision from that thing. Just wrap your head around that for just a second. 10,000 miles. When I decided that I wanted to be a photographer more than anything in the world, you know what happened? It was like a catapult. I was shot forward in spirit and soul and energy and everything because I was listening to the thing that was supposed to be doing. I had a set of core values. I had understood what I was supposed to be. And I knew that I was 10, miles and a bunch of numb cold fingers and a bunch of dark room time and a bunch of failure away. But making that one decision changed my life, and it can change yours. Anybody here not know what they're supposed to be doing right now? We talked about this. Anybody unsure at all. Okay. Thank you for being honest. Think you're being honest? Think you're being honest? Let's apply these people for being brave. Come on, now. We're gonna do a little exercise real quick, and I get a mic up here to, um, nice woman in the second row here. You got this. Stand up and tell us who you are, if you would. Please. My name is Rebecca. Everybody gotta All right, so I want you to know it's totally natural. I would say more people in life that I encounter or that coach that I help understand this that creativelive or in the book or wherever. Don't know. So you're good. OK, take a deep breath. Um, what did you love to do as a kid? I love talking with people. I love hearing their stories. Okay. And what shape did that take when you were a child? And how did you, uh, connect with other kids and learn their stories? How do you know that? That's a thing. I grew up in a big family, so that's probably a huge part of it. Family origin stuff. It's a really important part of it. And you know what? That's see? That's to me. That's an amazing clue. How did you love to spend your time not just arranging the family and managing folks, but what else did you like to do when I was a child. Probably playing outside. Good. Um, it was never really the most creative person. So are in that type of thing. Was not It was not a thing. Great. Um, playing outside. Give me three or four other things. Like, Were you in Girl Scouts? Were you? Did you play sports? Did you love to read? Do you love to be alone and build forts? Like, what are some of the things? Um, I would say I spent a lot of time trying everything. So, you know, in my family, it's kind of a joke that I did tap for a couple weeks. I did ballet for a year or two. I did piano. All those in all those sports definitely found my nation later on. But I did love to read. I love to cook, uh, and spend time with friends. I know that sounds good. No, it does not sound stupid at all. It sounds amazing, because what you just told me, it was like, 50 things that tell me a little bit about who you are. And it to me. It gave me listening to you a sense of which direction you know you actually want to go in. You talked about people you talked about connection. You talked about being acted like all of these things are important part of the next part of your life. Thank you for sharing. She can sit down a round of applause for her. The cool thing is, we're taught to ignore our intuition and you know, it never goes away. It's there. And if we can listen to it, this is the calling part of the book. It was a little bit of Ah, just that The title of the book. It's meant for people who are looking for their creative calling to, say, creative calling. Yes, I want to tap into that. But it's also it's about creativity, and it's about are calming. And the cool thing is that intuition is this amazingly powerful asset that we've all got. And like all those other things that we already talked about Oh, we shouldn't pay attention to that. It's impractical. It's all these other things. But, you know, we know about this thing up here. This is a two million year old organ. It is not meant to keep you happy. You understand? I'm saying This is meant to keep you alive. Here's the cool thing. You can get this thing that's not meant to keep you happy and it's meant to keep your life. You can get it to work for you. I will tell you what I learned about most people is that for most people we work for it. And that's scary because we're taught that this is this rational mind is infallible on It's great and it's what separates us from the speed. No, no, no, no, no. This thing is looking for Sabretooth Tigers at all times. I mean, it's OK. The number of Instagram likes that you got yesterday on your post. Your brain actually sees that as a saber toothed tiger. This is truth. This is your biology. So in trying to make yourself happy, fulfilled, successful. These words you're literally working against your biology. Your biology is kind of it's a blunt instrument is trying to keep you alive, not happy and fulfilled. So Step one is starting to really cognitive around this and I notice I'm pointing up here, but what I really should be pointing out is right here. Okay? This is something we're taught to ignore, and no one who told you to ignore this means bad for you. We've already covered that. I'm not saying that you should ignore this entirely. I'm saying that. Look back in your history where we were just talking to what was your name again One more time. Rebecca told us that the things that made her feel good were being with friends and cooking, and she she listed like 10 things. I want you to look at those things We've all had this moment in our past where life felt effortless, where we were with people that we loved and people who loved us, even if it was just for a minute. Even if you came from a lot of trauma as a child, there were moments. Look at those moments. There are clues there. Here's an exercise for those of you here. Still lost because it's OK to still be lost. We're not going to solve everyone's problems in 45 minutes. Would be nice if we could, but we can. The perfect Saturday morning. I want you to envision this just for a second Saturday morning. If you have kids there away, if you don't have kids and you want kids there there. It's the perfect Saturday morning. You have all the money you need, all the time you need. You don't have to go to work for a few days. It's Saturday morning. What do you do for someone who doesn't know what they want to do? Would you please raise your hand and describe this Saturday morning to me two qualifiers? I know that's a lot someone in the audience who doesn't know what they want to do. Describe your Saturday morning. This is a scary exercise, but I'm looking for hands. I'm not gonna move until we get one. Yes, good serve again. It might come in your way in 32 and boom! It's just like magic, right? My name's Alex. Hi, Alex. I don't know exactly what I want to do yet, but my Saturday mornings I try to get up around 400 not what you try to do in the imagine section. Imagine the perfect Saturday morning. My perfect Saturday morning would be getting up and reading something that inspires me and then creating something on a dhobi or something that I like to tell a story with. Okay, then I go from there and just try to do things I love. Like going hiking or taking photographs that Aiken work with or just try to be better with. That's kind of like what my Saturday morning looks. Let's let's let's go past noon. Let's keep going. You're on a roll because mine would have started at noon. So usually after past that I just try to work on creative things that I like. Like a lot of times I used Adobe Premiere, even Adobe rep. I just know it's cool. You like toe run around and puts around a photo shop in light room and make photographs look better and different than they did when they came out of the camera. Exactly Who's with you? Are you solo usually solo? Usually. I mean in your mind. Yes. Okay. Um, what is the Do you have an envision for what you're doing with these photographs? Putting him in your basement? Uh, sometimes on Instagram Sometimes. I just saved him to look back at that. Uh, just a lot of times I just like to tell a story about my moment in that time. What I was doing great. Here's how this sounds to me and I'm just gonna play this back to you. Could you could be wrong But it sounds like you want to be a professional photographer. I want to be more on the filmmaking said. But I like photography because I'm able to, like, add music or just add words to tell that story. Okay, we started off. He didn't know what he wanted. Okay, now, perfect. Saturday morning. We're 2/3 of the way there. He knows he likes photography, but he really wants to make films, and he wants to get up. And he wants to have some time himself to write and inspire and plan out where he wants to go. And he wants to spend his time actually making films. What's the end goal of those films? Do you want to put them in your basement, or do you want to share them? I want to share them. What kind of films do you want to make and who do you want to share him with? I want to make films about, like, talking about like other people, like in the past, I've made films about Holocaust survivors or Holocaust awareness. And I just like to tell other people story compared to my story, because that's the one that I live every day and I know of. And I just want to hear what other people have to say round flaws with this man. So here's the cool thing is that that was a five minute thing, right? And this is how close we are. Most of us lay awake at three in the morning saying I have no idea what I want to do, and then just we just sharpen the focus just a little bit. We can get them. I'm not saying that you have to do all those things. I'm saying that in five minutes, when you ask the right questions, you can make a lot of ground and I want everyone at home. You all in your underwear in Ohio. I'm looking at you. I want you all to be able to understand that this is possible. This is the imagine part of our lives, and we're taught to not imagine. I'm saying your imagination is so rich and if you can connect with just to a little just a little bit, I'm telling you that your life is possible. I did that. I didn't make films about Holocaust survivors, but I took photographs for a living and I had the same. Didn't know what I want to do. I bailed on a current professional soccer. I dropped out of medical school and I bailed on a PhD in philosophy in three separate years. Imagine my poor parents. These are all really culturally revered things to right. We're going to be a doctor, a professional athlete. Or if you're not that kind of doctor, you're a different kind of a doctor. That's great. I disappointed nearly everyone in my life was one of the hardest things I've ever done. And keep in mind I am white. I am male. I was born in America in the and I had basically every privilege you can. And it was still the hardest thing I've ever done to disappoint everyone who cared about me. So I'm not saying this is easy, but I'm saying you must do it. You have one shot. Next time we talk, I am No. You will have made another film, a short piece, an interview with someone, a biopic. You've you know what you actually want to do. So the cool thing in this whole system is you get to jobs, job one, find out what you're supposed to be doing. There's a lot of introspection. This is where the imagine and design part comes in. Imagine what you want to be doing. And then the cool thing is, once you make that decision, that's that one decision. Now you just gotta figure out how to do it. We're told that stuff is so complicated. I get I get asked from people like, I am an engineer at Microsoft and I really want to own a bakery in the neighbourhood over here in Redmond. I just want to have, you know, I want to bring people together like people like all these things. And, like the first thing you should not do is not go released space go by a bunch of ovens. Higher big staff. But this is what goes in our mind, right? You know, my prescription is for this Microsoft engineer. Go back a scone, start baking scones every Sunday, and then start making scones and having a few people over. And then you also need to have some coffee at this cafe, so explore the world of coffee. This is what it means to follow your passion to follow. Your curiosity were never taught any of this. Do not go mortgage, get a second mortgage on your house and do all those other things because what you might find out is you don't actually want to own a cafe. You want tone a restaurant and it's not scones. It's spaghetti. But here's the cool thing. You never gonna find out if you don't start taking actions. We're gonna talk a lot about action a little bit later.

Class Description


Renowned artist, author, and CreativeLive founder, Chase Jarvis, teaches us how to unleash our creativity, transform our lives, and add value to everything we do.

Now imagine your big dream- whatever you want to create or become in this world.  Are you unsure of where to start? Do you have trouble finishing your projects? Are you struggling with finding a way to channel your creativity? Regardless of age, income, or stage in life, use Jarvis’ unique IDEA framework to activate your life with the actionable tools necessary for becoming unstuck and creating a more meaningful life. This class will help you ask the right questions, eliminate old habits that are not working and test new approaches to create the life you truly want.

In this class, you will learn how to: 

  • Design a daily creative practice that supports your health and happiness

  • Tame distractions & spend time on the right things

  • Figure out & address what’s blocking you

  • Bypass excuses and get to work

  • Find your supportive community

  • Examine your mindset and reprogram the ideas that aren’t serving you


You will enjoy life and be more successful if you focus on creating... and Creative Calling is an engaging guide to doing just that. – Richard Branson

Chase is the perfect guide as we learn how creativity has the power to change everything. – Brene Brown

It's a must read for any creator or entrepreneur. – Daymond John

Creative Calling will whole-heartedly change the way you think and it will provide you with the inspiration to make a bigger life than you ever thought possible. – Debbie Millman

You won't find a better resource to unlock your true potential. – Jimmy Chin


Friends! Life isn’t about “finding” fulfillment and success – it’s about creating it. Creativity is a force inside every person that, when unleashed, transforms our lives and delivers vitality to everything we do. Left unexpressed, it can be a poison in your life leading to unhappiness, unfulfillment, and that feeling there is something missing.

I’ve been there. The good news? We are all born creative. By creating regularly, we access a new source of vitality. Establishing a creative practice is therefore our most valuable and urgent task – as important to our well-being as exercise or nutrition. Every day is an opportunity to tune into your creative calling. You’re never truly lost no matter how far you’ve wandered. It’s all meaningful. The frustration, boredom, or resentment you might feel is your intuition’s way of telling you that there’s a turn up ahead. Will you be ready?

This is a book about creativity, but in a larger sense it’s about life and how you live it. Whether your ambition is a creative career, completing a creative project, or simply cultivating a creative mindset, I wrote this book for you.


Artist, author, entrepreneur, mischief maker... Chase Jarvis is well known for many things. As a photographic master, he’s regularly cited as one of the most influential in the past decade. Chase has won numerous awards including Prix de la Photographie de Paris, Cannes Lions, and The International Photography Awards. But Chase has always cherished community over competition.


Tristanne Endrina

I think this class is an amazing supplement to the book. It's an extension of the ideas Chase wrote about ... with conversations with amazing minds like Chris Guillebeau and Jasmine Starr and a lot of great questions from the audience. You take their thoughts and feeling and interpret them to apply to yourself and what you want to create in life. Thank you, Chase, for having me in the audience. I thoroughly enjoy learning from classes like this. Thank you so much. ~ Lifelong learner, Tris


I’m enjoying the book. I find Chase’s story inspiring and it’s great that he wants to share it and to help everyone learn to be successful at being creative. I am not looking for a career, I am looking to find creativity I seem to have lost in photography and in other hobbies. So far I am learning that I need to make a plan to get where I want to be. I know it’s still in me somewhere, I will just need to put in the work to rediscover and develop it. Interesting book and class and I just discovered the workbook tonight. I tried to watch the live class but the volume wasn’t as loud as other classes and it was difficult for me to hear on all my devices. I am going to connect my laptop to my stereo speakers to watch it soon.


Thank you for this course- I can't wait to read the book. Working through some big projects and struggling to finish the last few miles, these were all great reminders and I love the compass analogy- so true! You can tell Chase really cares about what he's teaching.