*As you might have seen, Justin & I both attended the inaugural What If Conference this past January in Cabo, and we are SO excited to have been invited back again to speak at the next one: the What If Portland Conference taking place next month on July 23-26th, where we will be speaking all about going from Dreamer to Doer and What If's to What's Done. We're excited and honored to be there as speakers, but I can't tell you how much more excited we are just to get to go. To sit there as an attendee and soak up as much as we possibly can from people like Anne Sage, the editor of Rue Magazine and Fer Juaristi. To talk and dream out loud with the other attendees. And to....quite frankly....get uncomfortable again. When we went in January, that was the direct spark that led to us doing a Walk Through in Australia and honoring a soldier at our WPPI talk. It challenged us. Pushed us. Got us out of doing the same things over and over again and expecting a different result, and gave us a healthy shove back into dreaming again. And I'll be honest, I'm ready for another kick start like that again. I can't wait to see what comes out of this next one. We wanted to give you guys a little taste of what What If is all about, so I am SO excited to introduce Jen Bebb (one half of the dynamic duo that is Jen & Steve Bebb of Bebb Studios and the founders of the What If movement) to talk to you guys a little bit today about getting back to dreaming. She's amazing....soak in everything you can!
“Boring is already full.” This is one of my favorite lines from Seth Godin. He’s right, you know, boring is full to overflowing, yet people stay there. Why? Because while boring is already full, it’s also a safe and comfortable place to be.
So how do you know if you're living in boring? Often we don’t even realize it until something shakes us out of that place and forces us to take a long hard look at what we’ve built.
That’s where your dreams and “what if”s come in. Life is filled with “what if” moments where decisions, big or small, that chart our lives are made. How often do we let those moments pass by because of fear or distraction or, well, fear? Uncertainty is scary, it really is, but dreams are made reality with a little leap of faith and a whole lot of planning.
When you are a Creative, ideas are your life blood. Without them you stagnate and wither. Growth as an artist and a person becomes all but impossible. It is our dreams and our crazy ideas that propel us, inspire us and keep us alive. Creatives live to create - and dreams drive that creative spirit.
If you aren’t used to acknowledging your dreams, pursuing them can feel all but impossible. We get so busy working in our businesses and trying to find balance, that we forget it was a dream that brought us here in the first place - a “what if” that we followed through on. We dreamed once, didn’t we? When we picked up a camera or started a business. How can we do it again? Here are a few tips to get you started:
1. Give yourself permission to dream and brainstorm each day. Find a place that inspires you or do something repetitive to free your mind (like jogging or washing dishes, for example). Let your mind wander freely and the ideas will come. It might take some time if you’re out of practice, but they will come.
2. Write your thoughts down. It may only be a word or a half-formed idea, that’s alright. If you write it down, you can come back to it later when inspiration strikes again, fleshing out what you have into something tangible and doable.
3. Honor those thoughts that come into your head, seemingly from nowhere. Stop what you are doing and let the ideas flow. Share those thoughts, however crazy or silly they might be, with someone. Write them down and see where they take you. It is often the most outlandish idea, the “what if”, that becomes something incredible.
4. Start. Then finish what you’ve started. A dream is just a dream until you make it a reality. Big or small, ideas are worth seeing through to the end - some will be successful others not so much. For Creatives, though, the act of seeing one idea through is important to seeing other ideas through. As we create we dream bigger, it’s a cycle that feeds on itself.
We want to learn about your “what ifs” and help you bring them to life. That’s what the What If Conference is all about - creatives working together to facilitate each others dreams. This is a place where “creative” is not defined by work product (like photography or graphic design), but by the Creatives themselves.
**To help get you there, we are giving away one seat to a Creative who is ready to make their dream a reality. Simply write your “what if “ down, along with ideas of how to make it happen. Send that to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than June 30th and we will pick a winner.
Not ready to share? That’s alright too. We have a gift for you also - a $50 discount off our Learner Plus tuition. Just use the code ‘JUSTINANDMARY’ to claim your discount. We can't wait to see you guys there!