Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Diary of a creative person: day 8

Keeping your purpose and goals in your mind but not always to the very front of it

Marc's discovery of the graffiti and his fascination with it also illustrate his ability to keep his purpose and goals in mind but, importantly, not to the exclusion of other things of interest and potential artistic value. 

The purpose of the project Marc was working on, which was to create a piece of music inspired by a specific environmental landscape, did not encompass a fascination with and exploration of graffiti culture. If Marc had allowed his current purpose to lead him by the nose he would likely have kept his head up and walked on by the 'irrelevant' graffiti, so missing an opportunity to add to his stockpile of interesting ideas and experiences which could inspire future works. Instead, as his blog makes clear, he was able to stop to explore and record the graffiti and simultaneously remind himself of his current purpose and goals (so keeping his direction clear but his creative horizons wide and uninterrupted).

We can often allow our current purposes and goals to blind us to potentially useful ideas, insights and experiences; they pass by unseen as we allow our goals to pull us insistently along, like parents in a hurry. This is particularly so in the pressurised world of work, where legitimate demands for efficiency and achievement can lead to us valuing the attainment of goals rather than the discovery of ideas. This makes it very likely that we will achieve many things, but not many things that are new and innovative.

To be creative we need to be able to look beyond current purposes and goals towards ideas and insights that will coalesce into future goals capable of uncovering new and innovative things.   

So, keep your purpose and goals in your mind but not always to the very front of it. Remember that a goal effectively achieved is not merely the end point of a journey but the culmination of a journey fully experienced. If you stumble across something that is interesting but currently irrelevant, stop and take the time to explore and record it. If you take a wrong turn in pursuit of your goals, do not immediately resume your previous direction but instead travel back to and explore your going wrong point. Ask yourself what insights and ideas you can gain from it. As well as enriching your journey towards your goals, you will add to your stockpile of potentially useful ideas and inspirations.

To read the complete article click here.

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