X is for...
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and uninspired by the oversaturation of content out there
So, there’s two ways this can happen.
1. You’re overstimulated – too much information and overload that cripples your mind.
2. You’re understimulated – too much repetitive sameness and nothing new to draw inspiration for creativity.
It’s about finding a good balance between the two. According to basic psychology and Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, human beings have a desire for both certainty and uncertainty in life.
One of our clients, coach Jennifer Lander from Her & Now, recently wrote a blog post about this, which shares some really interesting insights into how we can end up procrastinating as a need for certainty (there’s no greater certainty than doing nothing!), whereas some of us need more uncertainty, adventure and variety to invite creativity.
When Tara, founder and creative director of Dream & Do, was living in London and working full-time in an agency job, there was a huge amount of pressure to work long hours but also be constantly producing good creative content. These two didn’t necessarily work hand in hand when things got tough. She struggled with being at the same desk in the same corner of an open-plan office with no windows, and describes that she felt ‘completely spent’ to the point where she forgot how to do simple things like use Illustrator! She had no social life, didn’t go to the gym, worked until 11pm every night and so had nothing left to create or put into the work.
We can often feel maxed out, especially as a start-up and working on our own in the early stages of the business. That’s why it’s so important to take time out. Yes, it’s a cliché, but burn out is a reality. If you’re too stressed and busy all the time, you’re not productive, because there’s too much pressure. How can we think of new ideas when we don’t have time to think or wander or wind down or learn something new? It’s important to make time in our lives for creativity.
At Dream & Do, we’re all in highly creative roles, expected to produce a lot of unique ideas and innovation every day. We work four-day weeks, so that each team member has the fifth day to recuperate, with time for themselves to see the world, explore and work on our own creative projects.
Just like charging your phone every day, you need to charge yourself. If you’re overstimulated by the oversaturation of content, news, ideas, products and media out in the world, we can end up becoming crippled by too much information. Too much reading, Instagram, inspirational quotes that all blend together as one in our brains and produce mush.
In The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, she suggests a reading detox as a response to the modern-day information overload. For seven whole days, you’re not allowed to watch TV, read magazines, books, social media, use the internet, try and even stop yourself reading so much as the back of a cereal box. Could you do it?
The point is to rejuvenate for greater mental clarity.
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