I joined an online creativity workshop on Udemy by Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat Pray Love. Elizabeth says, being creative doesn’t mean that you have to be an artist; but if you want to stay creative, you need to find a way to make it a routine and form a mindset. Mostly importantly, you need to stay curious.
How to stay curious? Every time when you face a challenge, there are two paths: the safety path and the curiosity path. If you choose the safety path, you will probably solve the problem based on your existing knowledge, using a way you are familiar with. What about the other way? You may spend more time experiencing things that you’ve never encoutnered before, doing things that will end up nowhere; you may often bump into walls, and fail. But who knows, there’s a slight chance that it something inspiring comes up and change your life.
Creativity can be discovered. However, it’s exposed everywhere — sometimes you need to do some scavenger hunting. Therefore, even when you do something you’re familiar with, think a little bit more, investigate a little bit further, try a little bolder, you may find something great.
That’s exactly how I started my daily creative project A Doooodle A Day — I didn’t wait for creativity to come to me, instead, I looked for ways that’s working best for me to do my daily writing. It turns out to be something so enjoyable.
Another inspiring lesson from her creativity workshop: perfectionism is the enemy of creativity — don’t wait till you have everything to start executing.
It’s not like I just learned this today. I’ve been aware for a long time that I have a “perfectionism” stubbornness when doing certain things, usually things that I care about. I’m worried it would mean I don’t care enough if I don’t strive for “perfection”. Also, I worry that other people would blame me for not trying my best… Well, there can be many worries that go together with the mindset of perfectionism. As it sometimes turns out, I end up delaying tasks or procrastinating because I try to prepare everything before I start.
Therefore, I know it’s not right. I feel that it requires two things to change the mindset: being aware when I’m in the “perfectionism mindset”, and an incredible amount of courage to put the worries aside and go with my gut. Sometimes, I don’t have these two at the same time.
However, something must be done to break this: I need to get courageous and do something to get a head start. Failures are very likely to happen. I may get blushed but there are opportunities to do it again.
Ahh now I know why I wrote so much on this topic, because I haven’t yet failed enough to be strong.