Creativity, Spirituality, & Making a Buck


Creativity, Spirituality, & Making a Buck


Lesson Info

Don't Lose Your Edge

So beginning middle and end a lot of this was just ruminating through how these process you know how many of you have right here? Four five processes projects there in the beginning stage I'm going to hell including you two projects in the beginning stage okay, so seems like a great idea cook it up right? And, uh you know, we should look how many projects that we have in that stage then in the middle this is basic aristotle uh, drama work here in the middle we have to bear down and work through how many of you have projects in the middle stage? Okay, yeah. How many what's the ratio let's say identify projects in the beginning stage what do you got? One one in the beginning. Well, that's really one in the middle so I look at it, okay? But now we do look at the overall you really only have one project that you're cooking up. No, I have one project that's in the middle, at least in my mind and place it in the category of middle. And then I have another project that I have in the category ...

in my mind of beginning so you've to projects totally too right now one is like a startup kind of idea and the others you've taken and progressed it to a certain stage that's very unusual thomas how many do you have I have about a thousand in the beginning you up and none in the middle okay now coming back this is why we're looking at principles is supposed to you know method so that this principle is that you need to be moving them through move those dogs to how about you kelly what do you got? I have several in the middle a lot in the beginning is there a step before beginning just the idea of playing primordial ground here so you have you have a bunch in the middle stage a couple way more in the beginning stage how about you um I'm thinking I have I'm thinking right now I have one in the middle and maybe three in the beginning ok like three two one three two one with you a couple of middle and hate in the beginning how many's meeting I like you a lot in the middle and I have a beginning oh, you have a lot in the middle so you've actually taken them some place already you develop them nowhere I'm working toward okay how many projects you have in in final stage where do you go being released this month? Okay, gang yeah, you have yeah e have your website right oh yeah you have your you manifested something so I think what we're looking at here is that ratio between beginning middle and end is something toe you want things in the beginning stage, but I found most creatives have too many things in the beginning stage and, uh, and getting into the middle is, uh, is tricky and closing or bring them to fruition that's when you're really, really kicking it, you know, and also guess what could chain that's when the money's going to come through if it's a professional project, probably not a minute before how many of you are getting paid for your beginnings and middles? Anybody getting paid for that? You know, you could write a broadway musical you could write the book of mormon, which is the biggest hit on broadway, nobody's paying you're dying for years, it's all beginning and middle now that opens up it's a big hit ca ching ca ching ca ching ca ching. So, um, I think that's a very important sort of notion is that it once we're moving into the business modeling there, we need to be moving these projects along. So a couple of other points here again, these air, by the way, in the e book that comes with if you if you actually, um, officially purchase and download there's a lot more dimension to each one of these times times for five terms of details, hopefully hopefully everyone of them is pithy and particular couple of mu go like uh you know you should have some ah ha moments in terms of if you're working with these energies so don't lose your edge right um mostly this happens again this is talking to creative people when we're trying to reproduce past successes instead of moving along to fresh even if scary new territory uh ej so I mentioned a couple of that came to mind lady gaga in her meat dress have you seen that I'm that his edgy you know you might think it's corny or weird whatever but it gets your attention and it's hurt just pushing around below out there I thought a very famous moment in music history bob dylan going electric at the newport folk festival somebody may be too young to remember that but it's a you know a big moment in history where this guy's totally successful is a folk singer right and he's completely landed and all you gotta do is just keep doing that and he brings out you know, this very loud electric band and people are booing him off the stage quite literally and yet then it turns into like the next huge huge thing could actually started the whole thing that we're doing now alternative folk pop music um you know, I thought of for people who know no photography cindy sherman you know cindy sherman is she's very I think cutting edge kind of artist and she just photographs herself in sort of different settings and stuff like that it's kind of a wild idea in a way it's a very simple idea and a lot of it's in the execution um but that thing of pushing forward pushing into the ah lot of our current entertainment world pushes it back against this it doesn't just keep doing what you're doing he was successful but then you see people start to atrophy and really um uh if we're going to be creative and were told by the creative energy you've got to keep the edge going and if you're gonna uh want respect yourself you've got to keep your edge so that's that's quite a that's quite an interesting area um deepening our skills look you may have worked really hard to get where you are um but you've gotta never coast you have to work ceaselessly and tirelessly to become the best we can be at what we're doing so this is like really challenging you know if if you feel like like for example for example I have composer friends you know unbelievable masters that could sit down at a uh test like this with a score paper and just write out a complete orchestration without ever listening to another music anywhere get up in front of a hundred piece orchestra go boom and it's all happening and in new york that's how music used to be made not that long ago that you'd go to a recording studio that have, you know, full orchestras, their big bands and things like that people playing music. So then all of a sudden a company that I was involved with called, uh, making a device called a single beer, which is a computer music system all of a sudden you can do that by yourself with a computer. Holy mackerel that changed, and once everybody saw that, you know, I had the joy of marketing selling that that device and I love seeing people go, look, they were seeing the future when we demonstrated it, it was like, oh, my goodness. So what happens to the guy like composer who could do that with the paper? Well, too bad, too bad and the ones I know they just get the computer they learned the new skills they go back to school and what they had is still valuable because actually what's interesting about this is that the people who only learned on the computer, they don't really know how to orchestrate, they don't understand how to put different levels of instrumentation, you you're staying right? So, um, but if you're going to stay current, you have to keep deepening your skills and staying up, kelly your examples perfect, right? And I know other very talented graphics people who is soon and photographers and obviously a lot of our audiences photographers that creative live you have to keep up with the latest the latest stuff so an interesting question came up basically saying this is challenging teo to keep up with it and I found I got very involved with computer news trevor hamlet trevor perfect person I got very involved with the technology when I worked with this company it was developing it and for years afterwards I was just getting every software update and spending a certain amount of time and then you said I'm out I dropped out of that process deliberately consciously and I hired human beings as the interface with these machines you know, you just hire a programmer and say ok, they spent five hours a day learning the software on drop box or whatever you know, whatever it is and you use I use the skills I have which is sort of putting the whole big picture together so that becomes another person but then that's those set of skills. So really I think all of this undercuts any kind of complacency whining, blaming, waiting doubt just cut through and and learn what you need to learn and do what you need to do so that may involve going back to school at times you know, whether it's literally or figuratively uh, keeping you practice strong and uh in a sense um seeing the whole thing is an opportunity like look at this company here there's this opportunity that we have to communicate with people in this way it's very exciting you know it's very cutting edge some of you people out there we've never done this before right you've never talked to me or any of these other people before this way and it's becoming completely normal um multi media is going to be the norm of the future interactive media which is you're talking about teaching kids that home run how did the park can't fail can fail if you set that up right it's right on the cutting edge it's got heart um you know it's challenging to do it obviously but it's a great idea because those kids can come and work in a place like this so um this idea of deepening our skills and developing us we go it's just the opposite of laziness you know, it's all it really is so a couple more things about creativity and I hope some of these ring bells and we'll have a chance to discuss again I just want to get through a couple of them um yeah, because we're almost through with the points and we have time to chat about it flying solo some creative journeys air intensely lonely we have to learn howto work alone for long stretches and still keep our interest and intensity very challenging I mean, for example I'm writing a book that's a lonely I want to cry at times and feel like I'm a musician is like a would you hear about this and what's happening? And what about that there's nobody to talk to? And I sent the book have publishing deal and I sent the book to the other he didn't even want to talk about he said they all looking at when you're finished when I'm finished right now the solo journey of creativity something's really daunting you know some people I know don't work alone even writers guild co rider or something like that but if we are flying solo when you teo I recommend meditation practice because that teaches you to be alone and to stay awake so um I have a friend in l a who's a well known screenwriter and he has a schedule he stays up till five in the morning every day sleeps until noon he's on a completely different clock than his wife and everybody else on the planet but that's the time he khun fly solo like ten to four in the morning and you know he if he's writing a biographic film he's got twenty books about that person he's reading all of them so that takes a lot of discipline to fly solo but obviously there's a lot of fruit on the tree if you come up with something um that's where a lot of great things come from then what's the opposite of collaborating many create adventures are more collaborative how we work and play with others is critical oh my goodness have you ever heard the term creative differences j k on jamboree we're low right? So you know, look at these two people thrown together like this, you know? And they each have their own skill sets and tools but now they have to work together and you know that is such an interesting kind of moment, isn't it? You know when you have a boss that you have ah, you know, a team that you put together and everybody you know it could be feel like herding cats and when you run a bigger company you look and you go oh my god, how we gonna keep all these people running in moving in sync in the same direction so collaboration is, uh, it's interesting for example, if you write a screenplay you're like writing screenplays out there but you think you're visualizing what this is gonna look like on the screen and so forth it isn't gonna look anything like that never in a million years first well there's me twelve writers between you and the final I think nobody ever writes a screen playing except the very top people gets it produced they're gonna assign a new writer to it and that's going to get developed and you have to let go and kind of keep working along with it then a director is going to come in and the producer and the producer wants their cousin playing leave you know so there's a kind of endless sort of stream of the vicissitudes of working with others and um and how you work and play with the others and there's no faking that there's a lot of different styles of working with others but basically you're it comes from being open to that um the one thing that I think it's helpful um at four ish today pacific time I'm going to interview susan pirate who's an old friend and she's doing a program in april for creative live and her specialty is sort of understanding different types of people and how you can see what their wisdom and their confusion looks like but in buddhism there's some very beautiful descriptions off the kind of co mingling of wisdom and confusion you know that somebody's confusion is the exact same flavours as their best quality. So for example somebody who's kind of spacey and kind of broad and expansive uh come in here and look and see where the scaffolding is and where the outlets are you know, a certain kind of intelligence and the same time that person could be spaced out right? So in other words you look it as you develop your understanding of these kind of basic archetypes of people which is something I think susan's gonna be talking about um you'll see that sometimes we short change people in terms of seeing only their confusion and we don't see the wisdom in it so that that can really uh that could be helpful in terms of interactive things understanding that wisdom and confusion sort of have the same mother um you know dynamics interpersonal dynamics collaborating hierarchy all my goodness that's such a big issue there's so many issues family issues and things like that attached to proper understanding hierarchy but in general from our from our buddhist teachings uh my teacher had this sort of very famous talk lids and flowers you know? And if hierarchy is lids and it's just keeping people down you know and so I'm the big kahuna because you're all low that's gonna have a very short life so he would talk about flowers it's like the real hierarchy is is the sun is the ultimate hierarchy it's light and energy and everybody has the freedom to grow and to step up into into their best possible manifestation but it's naive to think everything's democratic that's that's a naive understanding collaboration it's not democrat even democracy is not democratic look at our government you know it's it has some democratic principles left intact but it's basically an oligarchy temporary oligarchy, you know, temporary monarchy. So, um the dynamics of working with the others a ll these air issues um so let's pause there from it and let's chat about all this it's quite a lot of material, but really, what we're talking about is practical dimension of creativity, right? And just to kind of review some of the topics we talked about, start with spending time, the sandbox and then we said, but we have to work with agendas, timelines and budgets the difference between a hobby and profession beginning middle and end for projects keeping your edge keep sharpening your tools and skills, ability to work alone and the ability to work with others, those all now with practical dimension of creativity. If we want to manifest that creativity, we have to work with those principles. So let me throw it open here at this point and, uh, see what you all think, but I think if you look over this principle, cells will yield. I like this idea off the stages of our projects, but when I was in a previous world, we have this idea of a father, you know, only family in all your ideas, and then you can put them on a timeline and that found it very useful and I and I thought for myself tonight I'm gonna make it a little funnel and see where all my different ideas on what stage is there another thing that really struck with me is to not lose my head I mean I remember this the first time when somebody else that you know how how you can destroy a passion when you turn into a business and I remember using I was a salesman for musical instruments oh no kidding and so I remember the sinclair are you of course I do because I love you and I and I got you know, got the new machines and then it was the most amazing thing I took him home that's how excited about the course with him but then came the time when we had to move out the stock and sometimes had to say what I like and you kind of destroyed it so I'm very aware of not doing that again this time I'm not one to be in this situation to sell what you don't love yes good I mean you know, I was a director of sales for that company for five, six years we took the company from two hundred fifty thousand years twenty five million in five years and it was so much fun it was I was beside myself to get somebody in front of that machine and show him what it could do because it was basically like um you know um went to science fiction is this at the time it was like what a musician always imagine is that when a musician looks at the score papers that you could hear it and now you just it's like I called it audible score paper you can hear it exactly the way the orchestra playing so that's a very instinct point because if you are selling something I don't like you know you know it's your battery goes down yeah juice goes down it's challenging what else any of those topics are fair game collaborating, deepening skills edge beginning middle and end we've got people online chipping in that I think that their awestruck just like the people in the studio water boarded the entire game I think in taking, you know, going from the sandbox into a business idea with you know, something creative it's important to break it down into workable bits you know, once you have the inspiration whatever you need to like make time for it which often involves actually shed ruling it rather than just being like oh it's it's just so daunting and abstract, you know? So you know, like putting it into being like on thursday morning I'm gonna like dedicate four hours to this sort of otherwise it won't get done yeah, so the idea of scheduling yeah well like working them in, you know, not being like you are fifteen minutes for this or just being like I'm actually making time for this by the way interestingly enough, my teacher my meditation teacher used to point to that over and over again is the way to get it into your life and pointed that if you schedule it in uh that's that's the way he said you can conquer all kinds of resistance so thank you for that julie raises sam sarkis is saying david there is one thing in my creative and business world that I worry about a ll the time and that's what's coming next the saying is that normal it's really bothering them? Yeah well e I wish to see this is where I would ask him another question you know to get further into it but you know if what's coming next is the sky is falling that's a problem there has to be some headroom in what's coming next movement some chance to be creative and teo have some flexibility and some mobility so if your sense of what's coming next is kind of doomsday is coming next it's gonna be hard to be creative in that atmosphere um if what's coming next is seen as an opportunity to express your creativity and your discipline and your um your talent tenets fine between with the jingle singers and being an artist so being a single I met artists in the sense of what we use it in the record business is like an artist they are artists, but in the physics as a making solo records and having a career as a solo artist that's what I meant okay, so that artistic okay, but I guess I was just kind of taking the separation again from creativity to making money and having those overlap and doing something creatively that to like you. But what about that idea, you know, buying the bid if it's going to be a profession as opposed to a hobby and taking responsibility for that transition? Because I think short of that, I've just seen a lot of people flounder right there, right? Just they think it's somebody else's fault somehow are that business is bad and industries is slow and it's never that I think a lot of the pressure comes from oh, well, if I'm not getting paid for it, I can screw it up as badly as I want or I can do whatever I want or whatever the outcome is and when you're getting paid to have to answer and you have the responsibility to deliver something that they like you shouldn't I feel weird when they say no that's, not it, right? No, not at all, but there is it's kind of the romance I guess is we're on a little bit, and then I feel a bit romantic when the check comes again, so you need gto if that's the case and your artistic life has no romance left in it, you need to reinstitute date night have some fun some time doing something you know, and every professional guest gets there you feel like you know what? I got into this for this reason and now here I am hacking it out right enough that's the personal projects come in and write where you don't have to have input, man, did you have an idea strong opinion's running in my brain right now? I can barely contain myself try to keep it short and sweet. I just wanted to comment on the person that chat room was talking about the uncertainty and not knowing something. Give a plug to my friend jonathan fields. He wrote a book called uncertainty, turning fear into fuel it's about that state of uncertainty as an entrepreneur hour as a creative and the tagline of his book says it all. And what you're saying is, if you're on stand certainty that you're entertaining is the sky is falling that's what you may manifest, but if you can harness that, uh, energy that fear that you can use it to your advantage if you focus it and then have a huge opinion about this difference between personal projects and art and just oh, I could just go on for days but there need not be a conflict I think where the confusion is and this is my strong opinion is that you know if you khun b you know if artists think that making their art is only to be of service to themselves and to entertain themselves and you probably won't get paid and you shouldn't expect teo hobby that's a hobby so call it what it is but if you can create art that is actually of service to other people and is a value to other people first of all it's ten times more inspiring and creative and you will get paid and you know it doesn't have to be a separation I think it's up to that point I think that there's a great paradox though because for me one of the big struggles with the vulnerability has to do with subjectivity you like the film that I think is beautiful or the scene that I think is beautiful someone else might not have put together and might not even like but like great films and great pieces of art have to be subjective and so in that way they are personal so it's this week because to think that the problem for me is to think about it in terms of service can become a trap isn't thinking about in terms of service and I also then thinking about it from their point of view and then I have an imaginary audience that I'm trying to pander to no I don't agree that you have to pander to anyone I think that you have to just like a good market or understand who your tribe is and go celebrate them and celebrate with them and by the way, boy, are we going to get into that in the next because that sales and marketing we're talking about there and we're going to enter our business mind and go like okay, we're going to have the range from doing something wildly creative that you never had any idea was goingto be successful and you just did it for joy and that turns out to be your biggest, you know, financial uh, you know, star wars you know, I remember standing on line with my friend that the screenwriters talkingabout when star wars came out he said this is going to be huge this studio is going to be huge invest money right now in the studio but you look at that moving now it just looks like a bunch of kids playing with, you know, kind of cheese ball toys and having a hell of a time so we're going to look at both ends of that spectrum the next in the next section um I think I just want to sort of bring us to our unless there's anybody online that's dying to get a picture, okay, thank you so to sum this up again we look at the overview in the first section, right? And then we looked at the meditation peace by itself, which is beautiful as a whole practice their whole way of going about that and now we just sort of having a little bit of instructing conversation about creativity and some of the different aspects of the pure quality of it and then also bringing it out as a kind of you know where manifesting and so to sum that up um the uh relationship between creativity and spirituality is we're going to get into the part of the work that we tie this stuff together. Meditation practice can help each of us to become a more creative person. Being more mindful unaware allows us to see larger patterns, take a fresh look and explore the deaths of perception so that's that link there and that's going along with the idea of pulling back to get perspective you know in a sense pulling away and out of the action and then re entering the fray. So from that point of view the meditation peace is our way of reconnecting with heaven if you look at it that way heaven principle that we talked about earlier on the sense of vision and open space and possibility jeez, we just stopped trying to limit whole thing and we just let let it have its full kind of space and then when we come back and we go ok, where does this connect to our life at the moment what's practical for us how old are we what you want to really start something up now from scratch? Is this a great time to do it? Should you kick yourself in the butt say if I don't do it now I'm going to be like, you know, at a different point my life and wishing wishing that I had so we re entered the fray and then finally um the relationship between creativity and making a buck which is really I think that I think for most of us is kind of a big issue it's really the kind of seminal issue for people like us who are involved with this program, how we can bring greater creativity and freedom to our business ventures so I think that's something people been saying how can you have fun and enjoy business? You know it's interesting I know everybody who you yell at me but donald trump to me looks like somebody's having a lot of fun with business like he's not saying here's howto be grim about it saying here's how to have fun with it and and then um and learn how to appreciate value and market are creative output so that's going to lead us to a whole nother conversation you might be sitting on the golden egg right now one of you, it just sitting on it. And so how do we take it out from under you and put it into the marketplace and let people know you have it and get and get get the cash flowing on that that's so interesting we might have it right now, so to appreciate value and market are creative output if we've undervalued it, and then how to bring more creativity and freedom to our to our business ventures. So crossing over like that. Now we're going to formulate an offering, and this is the beginning of our business sensibilities. What are we offering? What is the offering? I wish I could tell how many times I've been. I've been in a position. Higher people, a lot of my life. What are you offering? What do you do? Who are you? What do you want to be doing? And if it's kind of like huh? It's like it's kind of like next. So we have to define our offering and clarify what it is that we want to present. No matter what's going on inside us. What do we want to present project and connect with others? In terms of that so that's the offering is going to become our topic for the for the last segment of the day.

Class Description

The success of every small business owner, creative professional, manager, and employee hinges upon creativity — and the focus and clarity needed to unlock our full potential. In this course, renowned Buddhist teacher David Nichtern teaches how to sharpen your creative and professional skills and integrate them with mindfulness meditation to transform your relationship to both work and life.

David has spent 40 years integrating his Buddhist practice with a successful, acclaimed career in the creative and business sides of the music, film, and television industries. David shares the tools and strategies that have helped him succeed in business, thrive creatively, and live a rich and balanced life.

With David, learn how to cultivate stability and clarity from meditation practices, unleash your creativity, and form a grown-up relationship to money and your career. By the end of this course, you will understand how to support your professional and creative endeavors, define clear goals, and create a solid foundation for a balanced and thriving existence.