How to be creative, if you don't know what you're doing

how to be creative when you don't know what you're doing

It's funny how often we claim we don't know what we're doing when we try something new..

I've heard it many times, and I say myself. I even caught myself saying it yesterday when my son said he thinks I'm very good at painting.

Instead of just saying "thank you", I said, "but I don't know what I'm doing". It's like I'm making excuses to why my painting is not a Rembrandt or a Monet standard.

Maybe it's another way perfectionism rears its ugly head?

You know, that expectation of being an expert even though we've never done it before?

It probably is.

I'm sure though, that when it comes to creating and creativity, not knowing what you're doing is part of the point.

You are in that space of not knowing, but being curious. Of discovery and imagining. Of learning and trying.

To me, that is what creating is about.

Not knowing in advance how it is all going to turn out. I don't even think that is possible.

When I sit down to write a blog post like this one, I might start with the headline, which actually usually changes, but I don't know how to get the post written. I don't know what I'm going to say.

Sometimes I think of a line and write it down in a notebook, but it's not until I sit down at the computer, that the writing process really begins.

And I don't know how it ends.

I'll be honest, it's a difficult space for me to be comfortable in. So I'm a top procrastinator. It's an internal battle. But it's a choice I insist on making. Because the benefits way outweighs the cons.

That's creativity, isn't it?

Having a go, giving it a try, not being certain. Doing a little, then leaving it. Then coming back and doing a little more. Experiencing the pride, joy and increased self-respect when you make it.

What stops a lot of women creating?

Many times I hear women who are looking for more purpose in their lives and who want to create more, say things like:

"I don't know what I'm doing".

"I don't know how to get started"

"My brain stops working due to fear when I sit down to write/paint/craft."

"I love writing, so why don't I just write?"

"If only I knew how to get over my fear".

Oh, the fickleness of our ego!

It can't be trusted. Seriously.

Your ego is not the real you. It's not your creative self.

How to be creative (when you don't know what you're doing)

I believe there is a creative solution to any challenge we have.

My guess is, that you probably know a lot more than you give yourself credit for. We almost always do.

But I'm here to help you along, so I'll give you some "start fuel".

You might need to start waaay small and sit your ego in a chair in the corner. It can be a comfy one, but your critical ego voice can get a break from talking (rubbish) while you have a little fun.


  • You can sign up for a course. Udemy and Creativelive have some good and cheap online courses. The structure of a course can be really useful if you're not in the habit of creating.

  • CarlaSonheim.com have some great courses. There are not free, but there are all kinds of creative art courses that'll teach you different techniques.

  • Pinterest is great for inspiration. It can be overwhelming, and I can get lost there for a very long time. But on my doodle board, you can get beginner inspiration.


I hope you find a way to spend a little creative time with yourself and/or others. Just 5 minutes here and there adds up and can add much joy to your life.