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3. Is it good to talk out your ideas and plans with someone? Sometimes when I talk about them too much I don't actually finish them.

It's natural to talk about the ideas that turn you on creatively; there's an excitement that comes from telling those around you how you intend to bring those ideas into being. Over a long period of time, though, I've observed that those who talk the most produce the least.

At first glance, this may seem strange: The talkers seem to be filled with such energy, but their energy isn't directed toward creating; its purpose is to get others to pay attention to them, to notice their greatness. This is a search for immediate gratification not much different from a craving for sugar or nicotine.

A real creative process isn't immediately gratifying. It's frustrating, mysterious and uncertain. The talkers can't tolerate this process; they're addicted to the fast high.

The solution? When a talker feels the urge to discuss her work with others, she needs to see it as a cue to keep her mouth shut. She has to train herself to do without immediate gratification, and as she does, she'll find the strength to tolerate the unpleasant parts of the creative process.