Take Back Your Markers

Adrian S. Potter
2 min readFeb 23, 2019

Listening to Your Inner Voice Like Steve Jobs (The Secondhand Inspiration Project)

Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash

The Secondhand Inspiration Project begins with a motivational quote and ventures wherever the creative path meanders.

“Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice.” — Steve Jobs

Everyone is born creative. We all get a box of markers in pre-school and use them to develop vivid masterpieces. But as we mature, the world snatches our markers away and replaces them with credit card bills, dull hopes, and burgeoning responsibilities. Ugh.

Years later, we recall how fun creativity can be. It’s that little kid inside. They want their markers back.

Even then, we doubt because that’s what adults do. We question everything. Can I really write a screenplay? Should I start coding without lessons? My cookies aren’t good enough to sell, are they?

But asking whether you can do something or if there’s a pot of gold at the end of the creative rainbow isn’t your inner voice begging for markers. It’s your adult voice tediously analyzing the situation and trying to get your inner child to shut the hell up.

The kid inside isn’t selling you on the merits of imagination. They aren’t calculating the benefit/cost ratio of following your passions. They just want to make something new. Something freaking awesome that will amaze anyone who experiences it.

That voice doesn’t care if an idea doesn’t fit the needs of some hypothetical market. It wants you to invent something that’s honest and real, and it believes you’ll succeed if you try. It knows there’s a vision you haven’t sketched, sang, or stitched that needs to be spawned, some match that needs to be struck into flame, and that fire needs to burn. Now.

Embrace your creativity by paying attention to the child within you. That inner voice will die if you don’t listen, pilfering a piece of your identity as it perishes. Reach for your markers. Make something new. Don’t second guess the impulse or doubt the merits of trying. Allow yourself a chance to be creative. They’re just markers. You weren’t scared of them as a kid, so don’t fear them now.

Adrian S. Potter

Antisocial Extrovert · Writer and Poet, Engineer, Consultant, Public Speaker · Writing about self-improvement, gratitude, and creativity · www.adrianspotter.com