Getting Art Done

Sep 11, 2017

David Kadavy

Getting Art Done


David Kadavy is the best-selling author of Design For Hackers, a mentor at 500 Startups, and host of the Love Your Work podcast. He writes about creativity, writing, email marketing, productivity, & entrepreneurship.

Main Questions Asked:

  • Explain what creative productivity means.
  • What do you mean by having art inside you?
  • What are the main barriers that prevent people from showing everyone how great we are?
  • How do we move past these blocks?
  • How do you handle distractions?

Key Lessons Learned:


  • Being creative and being productive are often very different things. Being creative uses different parts of the brain from being traditionally productive.
  • Being creative on command is a great skill to have by you have to tune it and discipline your mind.
  • The most common place to experience Resistance is when starting a project. The vision of our dreams often prevent us from getting started.
  • Technology is supposed to serve your mind and make you more efficient.
  • Being creative is very different from being accurate. Avoid editing while generating content.


  • What we consider work has to move up Maslow’s Hierarchy.
  • We used to be artisans but the industrial revolution changed that and made people and things interchangeable parts. The trend is now moving towards people sharing the skills and traits that make them unique.
  • Art of creativeness includes skills like problem solving, negotiation, and other ways you express your talents.
  • Art is expressing your true self by overcoming Resistance.
  • Choose a time for your creative work, the time you are most creative is also the time when you are most prone to distractions. Guard your time and shape your environment to facilitate being creative.
  • The very tools that make it easy to become discovered are the same tools that will distract you from your goals.


  • Resistance is your natural tendency to trick you into not moving forward and achieving your creative destiny, also known as self-actualization.
  • The source of the conflict is between your ego wanting to protect and your true self wanting to get out.
  • You have to give yourself permission to suck. Perfection is a manifestation of Resistance.
  • Find a habit below your threshold of self defeat and build the habit over time.

Final Tips

  • Hold yourself accountable, either through discipline or habit or by having a coach do it for you.
  • Being creative is a habit, start with small, easy to achieve wins and build a habit from there.

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Links to Resources Mentioned

War of Art by Steven Pressfield


Alpha Smart Neo

Getting Art Done