In an insightful piece by Brianna Wiest titled, Read This If You Feel Like You Can’t Stop Creating Problems In Your Mind, the author writes, “Suffering dissolves when we focus on creating rather than feeling. Instead of being at the whim of how the world makes us feel, we focus on how we can create what we want from what exists. Good and bad become irrelevant when the focus isn’t ‘what can I enjoy’ but ‘what can I create?‘”
In Start a Passion Project and When Does Change Happen? I’ve spoken a bit about Passion Projects, or any side project that engages you and fires up your creativity. One thing I’ve noticed is many of us spend the 56-hour non-work bucket in a consumption daze. It’s easy for us to go on a shopping spree, buy things and then wake up the next morning to the realization that we didn’t even need any of the things we bought. And while the shopping spree might make us feel better for a little while, it’s just a temporary fix – a band-aid to the widely open void in our lives. That’s why I dedicated a whole chapter to the idea of, “It’s not what you own, it’s what you do,” in my recent book, Mine Your Inner Resources.
Of course, I talk about shopping sprees as a placeholder for whatever non-enriching activity that people do after work; watching TV, having sheesha while playing cards, or liking pictures on Facebook. This does not include spending quality time with family and friends.
One thing you notice when you talk to people is how there’s an undercurrent of dissatisfaction especially among the millennial generation. A lot of people feel stuck, frustrated and the recent world news definitely does not inspire a lot of hope. Now more than ever, the world needs us to turn away from the news and spread simple acts of kindness among our society. That means genuine connections with people that matter to you. It means reconnecting with the child in you and following your curiosity. It means turning on the gears in our brains to ask the question, “What positive thing can we add to the world around us to fight all this negativity?”
You never know where it might lead you. 1000 Awesome Things started as a blog that turned into a series of books. Sal Khan from the Khan Academy started by teaching his cousin maths over the internet. Look where that ended. Arvind Gupta was in a science teaching program when he developed the idea of creating toys and scientific experiments from trash. Humans of New York started when Brandon Stanton lost his job as a bond trader in Chicago and decided to try out something he truly enjoyed; photography.
What if you wanted to start today? What should you do?
Create before you consume. Because your willpower gets depleted as the day advances, it’s easier to get your creative project out of the way first. Some people might wake up earlier in the morning to work on it. Others might want to do it after work. The general rule I personally like is to create before you consume. Even if you’re going to create something after work, make sure it’s done before the Infinite Youtube Spirals and Continuous Facebook Liking Sprees.
Instead of falling into the depressing outlook that makes you believe you’re in a long dark tunnel, look around for opportunities to create something – anything – and make a positive difference in the lives of the people around you.
P.S. If you’re looking into starting a website as a side project, use the promocode AHSCRIBE on hostgator.com to get a discount.
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