A not-so-funny thing happens along the way to extraordinary results.
Untidiness. Unrest. Disarray. Disorder. . .
Messes are inevitable when you focus on just one thing. . .
One of the greatest thieves of productivity is the unwillingness
to allow for chaos or the lack of creativity in dealing with it.
Gary Keller and Jay Papsan in “The One Thing”
There is the chaos of beginning new projects and learning new things, which I wrote about yesterday. But there is another chaos that also impacts my creativity and it’s that of living a life.
The above quote from Gary Keller and Jay Papsan, in context, was about how when we focus our attention,
. . . the world doesn’t sit and wait.
It stays on fast forward and things just rack up and
stack up while you bear down on a singular priority.
The authors go on to say that there are things that can’t be ignored such as family, friends, pets, and jobs. But you have to work around them, be creative in your solutions, and not let it limit you. This chaos is one of thieves of productivity.
Whew! We’ve all been there. When my daughter was little and I was working full-time, I gave up most every hobby and outside interest. I worked and took care of my family and that was it. That was my priority at that time in my life. I begged, bartered, and stole every moment I could to be with her. It was worth it – so very worth it. I was a good employee and attentive mother too. It was hard, but I was glad I did it.
It’s the same now as I nurture my creativity. I need to put that same focus into my writing and photography. Once again, I’m giving up things to do it. The stakes aren’t as high as raising a child (nor my emotions), but at the same time, it’s important to me. I want to be creative. I need to be creative. It’s more important than watching TV, hanging out, or mindlessly reading.
I need to be kind to myself though. No matter how much I prioritize or focus, chaos will still happen. Dogs will need to go to the vet or make a mess that needs cleaning. My employer will require extra hours. The house needs a repair that can’t wait. I need to roll with it and not let it derail me.
Some nights if I’m too tired, I set a timer for 30 minutes and just edit pictures. Keep this or delete it? Tag it. 3 or 4 star it if I want to process it sooner rather than later. It’s better than nothing, so that the nights I have time and energy, I can get right down to working on photos, learning new techniques, or writing up a blog. My goal is to show up every night and do something, no matter how small it might be.
So chaos is inevitable, both in the initial stages of creation and getting my arms around a project, and continuously as life intrudes and reduces my productivity. Now I have to remember that and apply it!
To see everything I’m doing with my 31 Days of Nurturing My Creativity, click here.
To see what others are doing with their 31 Days project, click here.
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