I am two-ish months away from launching my first online class and I’m hungry. Despite this process being vastly different from my experience 6 years ago, there’s something that feels edgy about getting close to a similar threshold. Not least of which is my desire to get this work out into the world. Regardless of how it’s received or what happens after I press play, I need to know that I finished what I set out to do.
At the same time, I’m also hungry to make money. My debt repayment has been on hold for most of this year while I invested every dollar I had in creating this class. I am beyond grateful for the support I’ve received since returning home and it’s time for me to stand on my own two feet. Because freedom is the thing I’m always the most hungry for. And money is one way for me to access more freedom in my life and creative practice.
Some days I wake up and I hate being hungry. I just want to know that everything is going to be okay; I want to know that I’ll be able to take care of myself and fund my best work forever and ever. Other days, I wake up and my hunger is what I’m most grateful for. It’s what keeps me going even when I’m unsure what the outcome will be or if I’m on the right track. On those days, I hope that I’ll always be this hungry to create.
Our world makes is really easy to not be hungry. We can get lulled into complacency and avoid feeling what needs to be felt. Distraction and indulgence are in endless supply. And everywhere in media and the popular social narratives it influences, we are being given permission to seek out only what feels good in the moment. While starting from full is important, we also need hunger to spur us into action.
And we need hunger to help us cross the finish line. Now more than ever I am understanding the meaning of “the last mile is the hardest” on a somatic, emotional, and creative level. Bringing together everything I’ve spent the past five months working on feels like a daunting task. My thoughts oscillate between “What if it doesn’t come together?” and “What if I come undone (again)?” I’m too hungry, however, to give either unlikely extreme much attention.
One of the most important lessons I’ve learned in my life is that the main difference between creatives—with similar levels of privilege—who get to do the work that matters to them and those who don’t, is that the former ones are doing it. They’re shipping their work. Which is hard. And it becomes less hard the more you let yourself be hungry. Because that’s one way of making sure you keep showing up and doing your best work.
So, how do you stay hungry so you keep doing your best work?