The term “creativity” is abstract. It applies to so many things and there’s more than one way to be innovative. Being creative could mean designing your own website or making your own recipe for pasta primavera. It could mean revamping your business model to streamline your business. Creativity, even in the smallest amounts, should be celebrated. However, one thing usually gets in our way when we want to create: procrastination.
If it doesn’t sell; it isn’t creative. David Ogilvy
Procrastination comes from taking the path of least resistance. And there’s nothing wrong with that, but if you want to get something done, it can be a problem. The reason that you don’t want to work is because you’re more comfortable not doing it. No shame in that. We’ve all been there. It’s easier to say that you’re going to do it later. But, how many more times are you going to have to tell yourself that? Take it from a master procrastinator: a lot. Unless, of course, something could help you break free from your procrastination mentality. Here’s where this article comes in.
How Our Environment Affects Us
I’ve tried a lot of things in the hopes of increasing my productivity. One thing that has worked for my has been to change my work environment every so often. Compared to other desks that I’ve seen, my desk is some sort of love-child between minimalist and messy. I don’t have that much stuff, at least compared to some other desks that I’ve seen. But, you know that rule of “everything has its place”? This doesn’t apply to 90% of the things on my desk. What I keep on my desk is in constant change. At the beginning of the week, it looks one way and at the end of the week, it looks another way. As I shift through new ideas, I get rid of everything I don’t need and make room exploration. I find that whenever my desk stays the same for too long or when it’s empty, it feels foreign. As if it’s not lived in.
Getting Used to the Same Environments
So, why does my messy desk work for me? As humans, we get so used to seeing the same things that we fail to process them after a certain amount of time. This happens to us all the time. For example, when you’re in a new place you “see” a lot more compared to when you are in your house. Overtime you become “blind” to what’s around you. It’s like when you smell something and then over time it disappears. It didn’t actually leave. You stopped registering the smell when you became accustomed to your surroundings.
The same thing happens to your brain. You get used to the stimuli, your environment, and it’s like having tunnel vision. Sure, you can focus on what you’re immediately working on. But, constancy in your environment doesn’t elicit a response from your brain. This is why a messy desk suggests more creative thinking. The more you see, the more you register, and the more your brain “sees” what’s around you.
Think of it this way: you have to engage your brain and expose it to new ideas if you want to be more creative. If you’re doing the same thing that you’ve always been doing, you’re not going to grow. The easiest way to change yourself is to change your environment.