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Creativity and Perfectionism

Friday, April 15, 2016

NOTE: all the black ? marks are apostrophes or quotation marks.....

Among everything else that I do, I belong to the online group 52 frames. The structure of the group is to take and submit each week a photo taken on a certain theme, taken THAT week. One of the benefits of the group is that it forces you to get out with your camera each and every week…. thus weaving a space for creativity into your lives. For example, last week the challenge was “golden hour”, the hour just after sunrise or just before sunset, when the light tends to cast a more golden glow.
Now I have been VERY busy doing pre-Passover cleaning...but even though I was busy, I managed, even without leaving home, to get a shot.

CAPTION: "Daily Dawn"
For years this was my morning routine: before really "starting" the day, I would sit and drink a cup of coffee while watching the street awaken below me.

All told it took me about an hour, fiddling with the direction and focal length, but that hour definitely added to my mental health for the week.

The week before that the theme was “negative space” (using non-active space around your subject). Again, I was busy so I set up a shot inside. Again, it took me about an hour.

So if I am so busy, why bother? I COULD just skip a week. But …. NO.
Skipping means that the chances of not submitting next week are MUCH MUCH higher. Here are some statistics which the group’s founder, Yosef Adest, sent out last week:
-If you post 8 weeks in a row in 52Frames, you have a 96% chance that you will continue to post.
-If you miss 1 week, your chances of posting the following week are just above 40%. Not the kind of odds you'd want to play in Vegas.
-Miss 4 weeks and your odds of posting again are in single digits.

But that important “consistency” comes with a price. Sometimes life intervenes, and you are at the hospital with a loved one, or the sunrise shot you planned on taking just isn’t going to happen due to the thunderstorm outside. So what does one do? One makes the best of the situation, and sends in whatever you DID mqanage to do. Even if it won’t “WOW” the others, even though it is NOT up to par.

And finally, one also learns, from being in this group, that others are MUCH better at it than you are. And gradually, slowly, you shift away from trying to impress the others, to simply enjoy the process. And to challenge yourself. The chance for creativity, and the ability to improve, are much better rewards than “likes” on a facebook page.

Now you may think that this blog is all about me… but not really. As ALL of these points apply to all of us:
1) Do you have a weekly creative outlet? That quilting group, coloring book…..? If you don’t I seriously urge you to try to tap into an area of creativity on a weekly basis.

See Yosef Adest’s TED talk HERE:

2) Consistency is important. Whether it is tracking, or doing ST, if you are consistent, you are more likely to stick with it long term. If you are traveling, or busy, and you can’t do your normal 45 minute ST routine, try to do at least a BIT. If you break your eating plan, KEEP TRACKING…. You are more likely long term, to stick with your plan.

3) It bears repeating, and reminding ourselves. Perfectionism is NOT our friend .Hang in there, and do the best you can.

Have a great weekend!!

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