Thursday, June 2, 2011

Failure and Creativity

A couple of weeks ago I had a perfect week. I woke up at 6am and exercised everyday, and was cranking out quality work in the basement. It was sunny weather, I took long walks while listening to my "Happy Songs" mix and I swear to god little blue birds chirped and flew around me as if they just knew I was full of win. Cut to a couple weeks later and while I haven't completely spiraled down into a black hole of sucking-at-life there has been some back sliding. I guess I just figured that all I needed was one good week to get the ball rolling and from there I could coast on my new found good habits. Turns out it doesn't quite work that way. What I can say is that I'm getting better about picking myself back up after a bad day. I know now that I can work the way I want to if I'm disciplined about it so I don't feel as helpless/worthless. I know that I can make up for some the time I wasted tomorrow if I work later or I can still salvage what is left of the day and chip away at something. This might seem like justifying being lazy, but it keeps me from paralyzing myself with guilt so right now it's something that works.

During my good week I got bored of listening to music and began to listen to Ted Talks instead. For those of you that haven't experienced the magic of Ted Talks CLICK HERE and prepare to become a better person. They are basically talks on various interesting subjects that are recorded and put on the internet for free. Usually the people are well known in some field, whether it's science, athletics, literature, etc. The first one that I watched was from the guy who started the 1000 Awesome Things website now turned into a book. It was an uplifting talk about how now matter how much stuff sucks we gotta keep going and find ways to be happy. The second video I really like was JK Rowling talking about failure and imagination. Be careful with this one people...I totally cried watching it. It's one thing to ugly cry in the basement because my cats don't judge but if you're someplace where you'll make a scene you've been warned. I loved this one because she talks about how much failure and poverty suck, but if you survive it you feel like you can survive anything. Bouncing back from failure and reinventing myself have been a major theme for me this year. The third talk I loved was Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of "Eat, Pray, Love", talking about creativity and artistic people. She talks about how hard it is for writers, musicians, and artists to put themselves out there and how different people think about and use inspiration. I should try talking the genius in my walls like she recommends. Together as a group these talks inspired me to find happiness in little things, to think of failure as an opportunity, and look at creativity in a different way. I've put all the links to the videos below in the hope that they will inspire you too. Have a really good week that's full of win and possibly blue birds.


Neil Pasricha: The 3 A's of awesome

JK Rowling: The fringe benefits of failure

Elizabeth Gilbert on nurturing creativity

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