Written by 8:06 pm Faith, Inspiration

Benefits of Creative Consistency

Consistency doesn’t count for everything, but it sure counts for a whole lot. With the many distractions out there, ready to derail even the most talented of people, “showing up” regularly offers undeniable benefits.

When we have an enviable attendance record: Consistency begets consistency. Physics tells us that a person in motion stays in motion, unless acted upon by a Netflix binge session. The creative mind is much like machinery. Too much work and you overload it, too little and a decrepit state of rusty thinking awaits you. Keep the process humming by allowing the steady flow of work to never let the mental cobwebs settle.

When you are consistent, it means never having to restart. “I’m getting back into the swing of things,” famous last words uttered by countless people with schedules as reliable as the weather. Constant progress keeps morale high, keeps enthusiasm brimming, and increases your investment in a project.

Set goals.

You are most likely to achieve your aim to become a famous author by setting a goal to type a thousand words per day onto the page come rain or shine. You can dream of becoming a concert pianist by Christmas, or you can design the habit that regularly gets you in front of the keys for thirty minutes after work. Goal setting makes all the difference.

Consistency is integral to creativity.

Writing doesn’t just transfer ideas, it creates them. The same can be said for all creative work. There is a risk, as Bruce Lee says, that “If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.” The inverse is rarely true, as doing something requires thinking about it. Consistent work puts you where the good ideas can find you.

With constant work comes constant inspiration.

Ideas are not a predefined bucket that you should live in fear of drying up. Work creates a state that connects new ideas. Often called the creative ear, when you’re regularly working on things you enjoy, the walls come down and seemingly insignificant moments spark inspiration. Just be sure to give yourself some space. Fires only burn when they have room to breathe.

Consistency lightens the pressure to be brilliant.

Creative people allow their routines to trap them into a mindset that demands each work be exceptional. Create something once in a blue moon and people will expect something as novel and awe-inspiring as a blue moon. Consistency relieves you of this burden. The more you create, the more you have to throw away or release to the world; as Hemingway would put it: “I write one page of masterpiece to ninety-one pages of s**t. I try to put the shit in the wastebasket.” I hope you are creating enough to have material to trash, because even genius produces mediocre quality sometimes.

Consistency forms needed constraints.

When you have to work backwards from your schedule, consistent creation naturally forms constraints—you better have a system in place to finish work at regular intervals. You can’t schedule insight, so the worry is that this will make your work repetitive. The mistake here believes that a common theme, style, or process forces work becomes mundane. When done right, consistency cultivates something that is repeatable, not repetitive.

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