Inspiration and Perserverance
Inspiration and perseverance are important traits in creating art and following the unbeaten track. Inspiration is about an energy that makes us want to do something. It is in these moments where we start to follow an unstoppable creative flow. Perseverance, on the other hand, is the steadiness of doing something no matter how difficult it may be, while never giving up on the end goal Both of these core qualities are incredibly important, and while we need to be concious of both of them, we also need what moments will need one trait to be stronger over the other.
In the actual moments of creation, it may feel like we're trying a million ideas that just don't work. However, we WILL get that one that just lights a bulb in our brain. We have to hold onto these moments of inspiration and follow them when we come across them. If you are trying to write a poem, why be stuck for hours on a poem that makes us feel frozen when we can move onto the next poetry idea and start fresh, possdibly even creating something better than the one we were originally stuck on? We need to follow these moments of inspiration and let them take over when they come. As this flow of ideas come in, it may even start to feel like the whole project is easier than it really is! This whole process is about finding the right idea that's so good that you can't walk away from it.
This is not saying that perseverance isn't important. We have to keep challenging ourselves to get better, healtheir, stronger. Perservance, in fact, is one of the strongest and common traits that creative professional find in common. It keeps us going, bravely and confident, into a direction we believe in. Perservance is about mastering a craft that requires such deep concentration that our brains can't even handle it. Cal Newport, author of Soo Good they can't Ignore You states that, "Pressing on is crucial in order to “tackle items that your mind doesn’t want to.” It's about discipline and working through hard problems, knowing that in our minds "won't" is not the same as "can't".
But this is where it gets tricky. The act of disciplining ourselves to one specific task may not be the answer to finding what fits right for our project. Discipline, in this case, will be the idea of trying different ideas until we find the one that fits. If you're trying to write a song and it just feels dead, move onto the next song! Try to find the inspiration as it comes, letting the mind, body and soul take over.
After you feel like you truly understand the craft, try working on it at another location. Maybe even with a different routine. The big "aha" moments come when we are not looking for them. Our unconcoiucs minds starts to draw inspiration from new surroundings, and we are constantly renewed and inspired. Don't give up, and don't get too attached to an idea. Listen to your instinct and let these character traits take over.