This may seem like a contradictory headline, and it is, in a democratic world where freedom is the pinnacle of social ideology. What I mean by this is, from a creative viewpoint, freedom doesn’t facilitate creativity. Restrictions, contraints, and limitations do. Limit yourself, your choices, and put yourself in a box, so you may think creatively to get out of said box. Without any restrictions in your work, there is no direction, and with no direction the work remains open, and with too much openness, there is too much pressure to do really great work. Which more than likely means, you may never start in the first place.
Austin Kleon – “Nothing is more paralyzing than the idea of limitless possibilities”.
Think about your medium, and what you work in, your current circumstances. Ask yourself, “How can I reduce my choices?”. you can try it anywhere and under any medium. You can create a piece of artwork everyday for a month, write a sonnet everyday, take a picture on your way home from your job, create a song with only one synth/drum rack. There is so much opportunity in any field to limit yourself, and create great work, based on restricted choices.
When you first start a project, define the constraints, write them down, define the box to put yourself in. This box generates the creativity. If you still think the project could go in multiple ways, then you haven’t limited enough.
If you don’t define constraints to a project, what can end up happening is, that there is so much possible directions to go, this increases the pressure to create excellent work, where you never begin the project, because the expectations are set to an insurmountable high.
Limitations give you a direction to go in, it gives you focus, people want to be told where to go and what to do and how to get there.Impose these restrictions upon yourself and you will find yourself being more innovative in your work and more able to solve the problem, because there is only one direction to go in.
Endless possibilities and a wide open creative plain also increases the chances that you never even begin in the first place, because of the fear of going in the wrong direction, you don’t want to waste your valuable time in a wrong pursuit, just like with finding and starting your passion.
Jack White – “Telling yourself you have all the time in the world, and the money in the world, all the colours in the palette, anything you want, this just kills creativity.
Limit your tools, limit your workspace, limit your time.
[…] Read it here. […]
[…] Like I mentioned in Post #6, setting time limits allows your to think creatively to solve a problem to a deadline, best practiced on your own personal work, limits inspire you to come up with a solution under pressure of a limited amount of time. Honing this skill can see you maximise your output and exercise critical thinking under pressure. Read more on setting limits for yourself here. […]
[…] Use a schedule and pencil-in the tasks that need to be completed first that make the greatest impact to your current work situation. Give it a set amount on time too, not just a time to start the task, but an estimate of when you are going to finish it too, like with a client project. Your own work needs deadlines too. This creates the constrains and limits procrastination if it’s something you need to do and it’s the most important thing on the schedule, then you are more compelled to show up and do it, instead of putting it off longer. limiting yourself creates freedom in your work and promotes productivity and creativity. (Contradiction? Think again.) […]