“Do one thing at a time and keep at it till you finish it.”
How often have you heard that business advice? Has it ever worked for you?
If you’re among the more creative half of the people on earth at the moment, is it possible that this doesn’t work for you? Here’s why: your creativity requires expression in a minimum of 5-10 projects. You don’t finish what bores you, and chances are you never will! Don’t you really finish just as much of what’s in front of you as is required and not an iota more? That’s the way you as a creative person function.
Why should you take on so many projects? Aren’t you bored if you have less than that happening? Is boredom your friend, or is it an open invitation from you to you to create some kind of excitement in the form of a disaster to keep you entertained? By taking on so many projects, you keep your nemesis, boredom, at bay, and give yourself enough outlets for your creativity to express itself without the self-sabotage of those disasters you otherwise create.
If you’d like all those projects to come to the greatest fruition possible, you need to recognize the three stages in creating anything, says Gary Douglas, founder of Access Consciousness and best selling author. It is Douglas who recommends that creative people have at least 5-10 projects going at once.
The three stages in creating anything are generation, creation, and institution, says Douglas. Omit any of these, and it’s possible that your project won’t be the success you know it could be.
Generation is the idea stage, the time to think as far out of the box as you can. Generation is not limited by this reality and it’s a great way to express your innate creativity. Much as you might like to, however, you cannot live only in the generation stage.
The creation stage has to occur in this physical reality if your ideas are going to manifest into anything more than castles in the sky. Creation is the ‘do-do’ steps that are required to bring your ideas into existence here. This doesn’t mean you have to be limited by what others believe is true in this reality. Would there be more room for your creativity if you looked at it as putting this physical reality to work for you, instead of the other way around?
Could you have more fun that way? (Fun is always a good inspiration for the creative types.)
The third step is institution or maintenance. These are the day-to-day steps that must be done on a continuous basis to keep your creation alive. It’s the follow up emails, phone calls, bookkeeping etc. It’s making sure the event you posted on Facebook not only has the correct date, but all the information people require to actually show up at the event.
Institution is the step that most creative types tend to resist the most. Boring, repetitive, and monotonous are ways that they often describe these steps. If this is your point of view about institution, how likely are you to do it? What if you were to change your point of view about it, such as by asking how much fun you could have doing x, y, and z?
If you absolutely can’t go there, no worries. You don’t have to do the institution yourself. You just have to be sure that it gets done. If you just can’t make yourself do it, then hire someone who likes that sort of thing. If you’re looking for someone to do what you so dislike, you’ll have better luck finding someone if you ask them questions, instead of just telling them the job description. Any job seeker, once told the job description, will tell you that’s exactly what they’re good at it—even if they’re lousy at it.
If you’re looking for someone to do bookkeeping, for example, ask someone what they like to do and look for someone who likes details, likes numbers, likes to make order out of disorder. If you require someone to make phone calls, look for someone who loves to talk to people. Finding someone who likes to talk to people is more likely to be successful than telling job applicants up front that you’re looking for someone to make phone calls. If they want the job, they will assure you they’re good at it, even if they hate it more than you do!
Are you still resisting the idea of institution? Consider this—that stuff you’re so resisting is absolutely required to provide the foundation for your next step. If you’d like to get back to the “creative” stages, where your ideas and creation can take place on an even greater stage, you have to lay the groundwork for that by doing the institution in the phase you’re in right now. So you might get over yourself on your resistance to institution.
There is one additional little trap that many can fall into on their way to bringing their grand and glorious projects into existence in the world. It explains why most people stop just short of success. This trap occurs when the project you’ve been putting so much energy into takes on an energy of its own.
All projects have an energy and life force of their own, and acknowledging this and allowing this can allow them to become far greater than anything you can imagine. It does require moving from total control on your part into question. “Project, what do you require of me today?” “Where can I put my energy now that will create lots of money today and in the future?” “What is required that would make this project far bigger and more successful than I ever imagined?” are some great questions. You don’t have to immediately know the answers to these questions. The function of questions is not to find answers, but to create awareness. Living in those questions can bring you some interesting and valuable awarenesses.
When your project takes on the energy of its own, less force is required from you to keep it going. This sudden change of density can lead you to make incorrect conclusions, such as “It’s not working,” “Nothing’s happening,” or “There’s no energy on it.” These conclusions are not your best choice!
What you’re perceiving when this occurs is your project becoming a life form of its own, which feels much less dense than what you’ve been working with. That’s a good thing, not a bad thing! If you feel this sudden expansion into space and feel like your project disappeared into non-existence, you could ask if what you’re perceiving is your project taking on a life force of its own and ask how you can contribute to it.
But whatever you do, don’t apply any of this. It would fill the world with way too many amazing creative projects that the most dynamic people on the planet can come up with, and the world doesn’t need that. Don’t do it, whatever you do!
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Jul 26, 2011
Ah this is such a great article, thank you!!
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Aug 19, 2012
such a great reminder….giving up the controls and allowing the expansion that we ARE through our business is what will change the world. great insights here!
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