You Are Your Influences

Take your Inspiration from wherever you can, and get your ego out of the way. 

In case you didn’t know, you are a product of your influences. 

When you’re an artist or a creator of any kind, there’s the temptation to think that your ideas have to be truly original and unique.Only the product of your natural innovative mind is an idea you truly own. 

And when you think that way, a couple of things will cause you to think you are a fraud or an imposter.

When someone else you trust and respect has an idea, and you use it and it works, it can be tempting to think you get zero credit for the impact. But that way of thinking reveals a flawed understanding of how creativity works. 

The truth is far more complex. There’s no such thing as an original idea. All the ideas and creativity that lead to amazing things are born from the raw material of our influences. Sometimes it’s a little more obvious than others, but it’s always there. It’s hubris to think otherwise. 

It’s easy to look at other talented people and feel inferior. You can never be that innovative or creative. But if you asked them this question and they’re being honest, all creators only own a part of their ideas. 

So much of what we create comes straight from the minds of other people. And then we make it our own. That’s how our brains work, and that’s how creativity works. Which is why it’s important to surround yourself with people who are way smarter than you and listen to them.

Get out of your head and off the bench. You are the product of your influences. That’s okay. 

Make them your own and go accomplish amazing things.

Daniel Whittington – Chancellor