Take Some Time Away
I haven’t posted a blog in over six months.
It seems with today’s preoccupation with posting content ‘hyper-regularly’ maybe like me you fear taking some time away from work commitments for yourself.
If you’re also self-employed you may well know the trepidation of blocking off any ‘holiday time’ for the fear of opportunities you might miss while you’re away.
Of late I’ve repeatedly encountered content that emphasises the importance of ‘stillness’ in life, something that I know is all too absent from me personally. From my understanding it’s taking time away from devices, work or any other distraction and allow you to stop, take a step back and look at the bigger picture.
I can’t for one second profess that stillness is the answer to all our problems, all I can say with certainty is that of late trying to take time to not ‘be constantly entertained’ has been a huge help.
The more and more we are bombarded with content, the more and more we filter it out. In many ways a piece of content is no longer something special we look forward to, it’s just something that’s there to pass the time.
Now admittedly there may be an huge upside to this, as now being a creator you have to make something truly remarkable to gain attention and break through the noise, but it’s also easy to get nostalgic and look back only a few short years where we would savour video content, perhaps watching the same piece over and over again with continued enjoyment.
Recently I’ve been enjoying taking photos on old film cameras. It’s not only been a great challenge of skill and a big learning opportunity having learned photography in the arguably easier digital age, but it’s been a hugely enjoyable experience having to wait weeks and weeks to be able to look at the photos you’ve taken.
We mindlessly scroll through hundreds of images each day, yet only having a selection of 36 analog photos every month seems more than enough.
Somehow the scarceness of these photos make them mean so much more.
Nowadays speed seems to be more important than ever and if you also work in the content creation industry, you’ll undoubtedly be feeling similar pressures from your clients to produce more work and do it quicker and quicker.
Being able to work quickly and efficiently is a key mark of a professional content creator and we’re so fortunate to have technology released that continually allows us to do the same job in less time.
But in a world where everyone wants ‘quick’, my intuition says there is still a huge upside to prioritising quality.
For me the idea of achieving ‘stillness’ in a creative sense is actually taking time to do something productive for your own work and often this requires sole focused attention on one thing.
It could be reading a book, listening to an album or even watching a film. Whatever medium or activity you choose, it needs to be something you deliberately set aside time for and that you will ignore all other distractions in order to complete.
As creatives were are constantly required to give a level of creative output. However my intuition says we all too often ignore that we need a creative input as well and it’s only through focused attention and absorbing other mediums of content that we can enjoy a level of quality creative input that we can channel into our work.
So my intuition says take some time away. Whether it’s only a few minutes or even a few weeks in order to come back rested, refreshed and ready to do better work.
To finish, here’s some words from Daniel Priestly, an author and businessman far more qualified to talk on this subject than myself…
“Everyone needs something to look forward to - [even if it’s just] some downtime”
“Forget [work] for a long weekend and go get some fresh air. I promise you that you’ll be putting your business at risk if you and your team don’t take some time off”.
(The above two quotes are from Daniel Priestly’s book ‘Oversubscribed’ on pages 171 and 172 respectively.
And I wish you every success.
You can contact me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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