Being original isn't about creating something unique. It's not about saying or doing or thinking something that nobody else has said, done, or thought of doing.
Creating from a place of originality means creating from a place where all thoughts, ideas, and dreams originate. It's a realm we all share, a realm where exclusivity and favoritism do not exist, where you and me can be original while doing, thinking, and saying the exact same thing.
All great leaders, thinkers, and writers who have shaped history; all great philosophers, inventors, and revolutionaries who have faced the impossible and changed reality, all of them learned how to strip away everything and tap into this source of unlimited potential.
There is no competition. There is no you verses them. When you create from a place of pure love and creativity, a place without fear or competition, without self-doubt or limitation, a place void of ego and selfishness, then you will create work that is original.
As a runner up to my previous post, From Bad to Worse, I must say that if I wasn't able to let go of the stress things like that cause, I don't know what I'd do with myself. By the time I arrived at the office in Cambridge, my head was really all over the place, thinking about what I was going to do about the gas. The programming work that I do requires my full attention, and generally nothing will get finished unless I can zone out everything else and concentrate entirely on what I'm working on. This mostly applies to programming, but I've noticed the same "singular concentration" requirement in other things I do (writing, and working out for example). The project I'm working on at Aerva needs to be finished this week, and I had results to show by the end of the day. So I knew I had no choice. I had work to finish regardless of what else was going on in my life. So I took a deep breath and let it go. I realized that no matter how significant your problem is, there's always someone out there who has it even worse.
When your list of problems seem endless, think about the moment. You're alive. Don't create your near future in your head using all the problems that formed in the past (even 30 seconds ago is the past). Deal with the problems at hand, and think of the future (the next minute is the future too) as a clean slate, a mold to which you can create anything you wish. Sure, current and past unresolved problems will have an effect on that future mold, but why think about what that mold might be? Some of your problems might resolve themselves. Unseen future circumstances will undoubtedly have an effect on the future as well, so leave the future to create itself when the time comes. Don't dwell upon it. Stress and worry comes from the prediction of an unhappy fate. Prevent your mind from predicting your fate and the stress and worry will cease to exist. You have the power to influence any part of your future. Believe in yourself and use that power.