At first glance, you might think that limitations keep us from progress. It’s easy to compare your work to another. It’s even easier to feel that your work is lacking because somehow, you’re lacking a certain piece of gear or you don’t live anywhere exciting. But the truth is the only thing stopping you from taking your work to the next level is, well, you.
Limitations don’t have to be a dark negative cloud hanging over your head. In fact, they should be the catalyst that sparks a storm of creativity. But that’s rarely ever the case. For most of us we’re seemingly caught in this never-ending struggle to find a way beyond our current situation. Sounds like the plot to a movie, eh? But in most movies the hero rises beyond his limitations. So why in the hell don’t we in the movie we live each day? Well, change is rarely a simple thing though. I know this from personal experience. I find myself struggling every day with limitations that should catapult me into a creative frenzy, but in fact cripple me.
Recently I decided to start a 52 Week Project. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for quite some time now, but couldn’t bring myself to start because I felt that I wasn’t going to have anything to say. For some reason, I was doubting my creativity. Plus, I felt I didn’t have the tools to create anything better than what I’ve created in the past.
Enter Mandy. Almost daily she was telling me to start a project. Any project. Just start one. I think she was getting tired of listening to me complain about my creative slump. But once I started the working on the project I found that I the things I was worried about didn’t actually exist. I was the one standing in my own way of getting off my ass and getting to work.
Interestingly enough, I discovered that the once I began to look at my limitations from a different perspective, the ideas started flowing. It doesn’t have to be perfect. It just needs to be. It’s very easy to get discouraged, but embrace those weaknesses to create something from them.
I once heard the phrase, “Progress over perfection” and I couldn’t agree more. I’m just looking to progress in craft. As much as I want perfection, I realize it’s fool’s errand. Nothing wrong with striving to achieve it, but avoid making that the total focus. Create and be open to the mistakes. It’s in those mistakes that we truly grow.