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Break up your creativity

You hear it often, hard work, hard work, work hard… But what to work on hard exactly?

Sometimes it’s not easy to pin down what the tasks we need to get done are. The mentality of working hard can then get in the way. If we focus on WORKING HARD!! then we can easily lose sight of working right.

At numerous times in the past, I’ve worked days on things that led nowhere. Why? Because I was WORKING, I had a spreadsheet, I checked things off of my list, I was productive. And the product of my productive work was nothing.

What I should have done then, and I am doing more now is taking breaks.

Done working on something? Take a break. Not feeling like work? Take a break. Not knowing what to work on? Take a break.

Don’t go checking off meaningless boxes, don’t continue watching YouTube, don’t push ahead after a solid chunk of work is done. Take a break.

Breaks help us with transitions. The brain can switch off from whatever it was doing and reorient, regroup, and then attack the next thing with its full might.

My personal break favorites include: cooking a meal, mowing lawn, biking to a vista point near me to think while overlooking the landscape.

These help me identify the next steps, come up with creative solutions, and transition from things like browsing the web into full focus. All it takes is 5–20 minutes away from technology and preferrably outside.

Breaks aren’t a luxury, they are a part of great performance. They are the spaces between the notes of an ode to creativity.

Could you use a break?