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Forcing Creativity Addendum: At First It Is Difficult, But All Things Are Difficult At First

Miaymoto Mushashi Art
Miaymoto Mushashi Art

At first it is difficult, but all things are difficult at first.” Miyamoto, Musashi.

This is an addendum to my original creativity post. 

“You can’t force creativity” is the common mantra of artists. I say you can force it but it requires time. It is a skill to be developed like anything else. You indirectly force creativity in the beginning. You can force it directly when you become better at the skill.

By repeatedly using the creative mind, you are exercising it and strengthening it’s ability.

Since you keep your goals and mind and schedule your tasks you will find it easier to recall this repeatedly.

Consistency is key in attempting to force creativity. When we repeatedly work on our habits, on our practice we will notice something. The stream of consciousness changes.

Using this simple diagram you can understand what happens with repetition. It is inevitable that your mind handles all the repeated information and allows you to easily recall. It is a kind of muscle memory. In psychology, it is know as the stages of competence :

Unconscious Incompetence →Conscious Incompetence

Conscious Competence →Unconscious Competence.

UI → CI → CC → UC

You begin unknowingly not doing it right, then by Knowing you are not doing it, then by Knowing you know how to do it, followed by unknowingly perform in the task – pure flow.

As stated before you want to have a schedule so you can eventually strive for the final stage of competence. So that you will gain good habits and keep up with practice.

Now I will offer suggestions within the creative domain that should be exercised on top of the repetitive nature of general practice.

Constraints

Constraints are a way of forcing creativity. To do the most amount of work under a proposed time. Some people work bad under pressure, some do not. Once you have worked hard on your craft long enough you should be able to proceed easily.

However, if you are beginning you will find it challenging. What you want to do is create periodic time constraints and use chunks of time to build something greater. Always keep building from smaller ideas until you have created something greater.

Mutating ideas

Combining ideas is a way you can force creativity. It’s a manner of creativity that offers an idea from multiple perspective and angles.

Gather Inspiration from everywhere. At every turn something can spark your creativity, you must be open and receptive. Always read new inspiring material.

Refresh

Sometime we lose ourselves and our original goals and schedule. For that I say refreshen your inspiration. By refreshing your inspiration and repeating and failing and learning from your mistakes, that is the way to get to the root of your self-defined problem. I do not believe it is possible for the person to lose that always persists.

A slap in the face, to the persistent man is but another day to his road to inevitable learning and achievement.

Notes

As with writing out your goals, making notes will also offer you room to breathe, interpret and assess your path, brainstorm and recollect new info.

Try something different

Try something in a new way. This month I’ve decided to pick up writing with my opposite hand. It’s a challenge but I am up for it and I am already achieving noticeable incremental efforts.

Work in a suitable working area. If you do not have a suitable work area, find a comfortable spot where you will have the minimal amount of distractions.

Take Breaks if necessary

Break the task in chunks.

Improvise 

These are just some ideas and thoughts forcing creativity and getting to the zone in a roundabout yet practical way.

Network with people and find a community to ask questions to gain additional support and root you back to your goals.

Above all, simply put in the work.

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