How to Overcome Doubt as a Creative

I've known since I was 14 that I wanted my career to be photography, but it hasn't always been easy, and people haven't always been supportive. One of the realities of following a creative path is that you will be met with doubt in various forms on your journey - and they're going to hurt at first. I talked about the failure that comes with being a creative, but facing the doubt that crops up when you're following a creative career path is equally important because it can hinder your pursuit of your passion.

So let's be clear on this -You're going to doubt yourself, and others are going to doubt you too.

Sometimes the doubt looks like a quick laugh from a friends parent and a "good luck with that" comment that's hard to shake later. Sometimes it's a nervous family member asking if you're sure about what you're doing in your career. And sometimes? You'll even doubt yourself and your capabilities - but that doubt shouldn't stop you from pursuing your dreams.

How to overcome doubt as a creative entrepreneur by Katharine Hannah Photography

So how do you get over doubt?


The best way to overcome self doubt is to continue creating, even when your'e feeling defeated. Show yourself care by not expecting the world of what you make when you're feeling doubtful, but don't stop your work just because you're unsure of the outcome.


Seasons of doubt are valuable; they help you look at your choices from a different perspective. Are you feeling unsatisfied of what you're doing and that's why you're starting to doubt it? Maybe try a different approach. A lot of the time when you're so entrenched in creation you can lose sight of what you actually want because you get that overwhelming feeling of I JUST NEED TO FINISH THIS. Have you been there? Cause I know I have.


Self doubt is totally normal and expected. If you're pursuing a dream that isn't clearly outlined for you as most creative careers are, then you aren't always going to doubt those decision at times - and that's okay. You don't always have to fully believe in your choices when it comes to an artistic career. Let the doubt crop up, but don't let it stop you.


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Katharine Hannah

Katharine’s work has graced the walls of institutions such as The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, The Harold Washington Library of Chicago, and local galleries such as Dreambox Gallery, Siragus Gallery and Blick Art Materials. She has also been featured on websites such as the Huffington Post, Phlearn, Fstoppers, Tigress Magazine for Girls, Bitchtopia, and Golden Boy Press.

In addition to photography, Katharine has been a mentor and educator in the arts since 2013. She has worked with students in various organizations and projects over the last two years, including Hive Chicago’s PROjectUS initiative and Digital Youth Network’s Digital Diva’s and Chicago City of Learning programs.