TED Blog: TED2009 minutes from Erik Hersman: Elizabeth Gilbert on ruining genius.

“Elizabeth weaves an insightful story of artists, success and pressure. She asks if she’s doomed. What if she never replicates the success of her past book? Is it rational or logical to be afraid of the work that we were put on this earth to do? Why have artists and writers had this history of manic depressive and mental illnesses? Why does artistry always lead to mental anguish?”

Are we paralyzed to act because of future attempts not living up to our past successes?  What an interesting thought Ms. Gilbert poses.  Do we let what people think of our “work” slow us down as we get caught up in paralysis by analysis?

What would I do differently if there was no one I was trying to impress?  Maybe an even bigger question…would I do much of anything if there was no one to impress?  The last question has a sharp double edge to it because it implies we may only do something because of the attention it gets us by others.


My head hurts from all this thinking.

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