Are you stuck or stalled out with some piece of your creative journey?
Recently, I took a detour to a place I’m calling Stuckville. I meandered there quite by accident after my blog mysteriously disappeared and before the monkeys showed up.
The experience taught me three valuable lessons which created a scenic escape route back to my Yes and Yay Universe.
First : Know when to ask for help
Asking for help comes easily to some and is hard for others to stomach. I fall squarely into this second group. I am such a stubborn “I’ll do-it-myself-er” that I waste a bunch of time and emotional, fretting-the-details energy trying to figure out stuff on my own.
Art Biz Coach, Alyson Stanfield threw me the first lifeline when she recommended WordPress ace and artist, Kim Bruce. Kim sifted through my missing blog’s SQL database and determined that it was infected with corrupt files. She advised me to create a fresh database and WordPress install. Next, Kim found and transferred my existing pages, posts and comments to my new blog. Joy! I needed to re-upload my images, (and I still have some formatting to do) but that is a minor inconvenience. I have my blog back!
And the nifty bonus? Kim supports WordPress Do-It-Yourselfers like me with consulting, web hosting and design services plus artist-focused tutorials. Bingo!
And did I mention that she’s super lovely to work with? I’ll be signing up for her WordPress for Artists Tutorial (currently $9/month or $65/year Canadian) so I can continue to learn WordPress and improve my blog.
For her excellent help and guidance, Kim wins the Delight Detective’s Bits ‘n Bytes Super Sleuth award. I am a grateful and happy camper…thank you!
Second: Be willing to find the tools you need to thrive.
In my case, I needed a better way to backup and secure my WordPress blog files from mysterious and nefarious attacks.
I found two wonderful WP tools that calmed my new blog jitters: Backup Buddy and Sucuri.
After everything went kaput, I installed a newbie-friendly, comprehensive WordPress plugin called Backup Buddy. It’s easy to use and understand. The program sends me a reassuring, daily message that my blog files have been saved to an external location, in my case to DropBox.
When I discovered that a snip of malware was *still lurking* in my brand new blog database, I decided to purchase a subscription to Sucuri’s scanning service. Sucuri is another wonderful product with excellent customer support. I submitted a work order on their website and received immediate, friendly help from byte experts Mauro Silva and David Dede. They scoured my site, found and removed the malware, and gave my blog a clean bill of health. Hooray!
The nice folks at Blog Buddy and Sucuri receive my Bits n Bytes award too! I feel supported and am so grateful for their help!
Third: Laughter is a very powerful un-sticking device
With humor as his compass, Jeff found my third escape route out of Stuckville. Growing weary of watching me circle the same block of creative inertia, he sprang into action. Using two sheets of paper, scissors, a stapler, and a marker he whipped up an impromptu “Head Manager” crown. Then he sat down in front of me, crown on head, paper on clipboard, pen poised and said:
“I detect a problem! Tell the Head Manager what’s wrong, every last thing. He’ll take dictation. Ready? Set? Go!”
Surprised, I laughed and cracked a smile. And you know what?
That stuck, pent-up energy loosened its grip in my head. I felt better. Lighter. Jeff, bless his heart, kept a straight face and, wearing that adorable crown, took a little dictation as my Head Manager.
I’m grateful for the people and tools that helped me move out of Stuckville and forward with my dream of beginning The Delight Detective blog.
And lessons learned?
It’s good to ask for help, assemble a few key tools/experts and sprinkle the sticky stuck parts with lightness and humor. That way I’m free to relax and do what I love: tap away at these keys, upload a few images and hit “Publish”.
Do you have any favorite routes out of Stuckville? Your map may look quite different from mine!
In my next essay I’ll wrap up my Pity Party/Stuckville series with a fun recipe for you to play with.
It’s time to accelerate past the stuff that’s holding us back so we can unleash the juicy sparkly gifts we’re meant to share.