While leaping from blog to blog this morning on my coffee break, I happened upon a fascinating article about creativity, fatigue and setting a frenetic working pace that really got me thinking. While it’s nothing new to most people who work creatively that you need head-space to be able to create, it seems that the business world is only now recognising that ingenuity requires an ability to supersede the mundane and the mental space to allow one to do so.
I’ve often found (as I’m sure many folks have) that I’m more creative and have fabulous ideas when I’m least focused on work or have just gotten into the relaxed swing of a good vacation. Some people get ideas in the middle of the night, when their minds can finally shut down involuntarily. Often artists will talk about working in their “Zone”, when they set their minds and hands free to follow the nuances and suggestions of their art to creative culmination. Thinking on my own creative habits, I actually vacillate between frenetic activity on a piece and “letting it stew” in my mental crock pot.
While thinking this way, time has no meaning, which is why it’s probably difficult for most people with the “Time Equals Money” mentality. Lawyers, for instance, are acutely conscious of the fact that the passing of 15 minutes needs to be attributed to some sort of income. Some lawyers allow for creative connections to be made in their work by working late at night or going to the office when others aren’t around and free-form thinking won’t be interrupted or questioned.
It only makes sense that new ideas have to come when the mind allows itself time to make cognitive leaps. I particularly liked the quote used from Peter Drucker, who stated that, “All one can think and do in a short time is to think what one already knows and to do as one has always done.”
Innovation takes a certain amount of brilliance, it’s true, but it also takes having the inclination and time to be receptive to flashes of creativity. Something to think on as you work through lunch….