Seth Godin’s book, V is for Vulnerable: Life Outside the Comfort Zone, rests on the thesis that art is what we’re all meant to do. And the hard work of creating art is something we all want.
This is an alphabet book for adults with an urgent message about what it takes to dream, to live with joy, to find our purpose and do fulfilling work.
Debbie Millman, host of the interview show Design Matters and a remarkable mind, discusses with Seth Godin courage, anxiety, change, and creative integrity, using his book as the springboard for their wide-ranging conversation.
We highly recommend you listen to the full conversation here.
Here are some highlights.
A is for anxiety
What are we truly afraid of?
“Anxiety is experiencing failure in advance. Tell yourself enough vivid stories about the worst possible outcome of your work and you’ll soon come to believe them. Worry is not preparation, and anxiety doesn’t make you better.”
“What we need to do is say, “What’s the smallest, tiniest thing that I can master and what’s the scariest thing I can do in front of the smallest number of people that can teach me how to dance with the fear?”
Start by giving
The difference between those who want more and aren’t getting it and those who want more and do get it?
“It’s back to this idea of what are we truly afraid of. I am more afraid of settling — I am more afraid of not giving what I can give — than I am afraid of doing it. And so when we’re sitting quietly, there’s a debate we have to have with ourselves all the time, which is: “What is my work?” And if “My work is to have more impact,” I don’t think we start by asking — I think we start by giving… Once you get hooked on that, culturally, then doors open — doors open because your work precedes you. You are your work — not your resume, but the ruckus you have made before, the people you have touched before…”
The full conversation is well worth your time.