Slowing inspiration down

Receiving a new idea is an incredible experience—to me, the sensation is a whirlwind of hope, opportunity, and excitement. 

This is a double-edged sword though, because all of us take in new ideas every day, which means if we were to act on all of them, we would perpetually be stuck in the middle of each one.

There are only two solutions: either to make smaller things faster (i.e., scope down, make it so you can finish the project in one day), or to pick and choose your ideas more carefully, because nobody can do it all.

For me, it’s a combination of both, and I actually decided to slow my ideas down with a process: I need to put together a bunch of information about the project before I can move forward with actually starting to work on it. This means coming up with a good name, for example; if I don’t care about the project enough to give it a good name, I don’t actually care about it that much, or I don’t have the room in my life to give it the care it needs to thrive.

Certainly, that leaves tons of ideas left over in my “cut file,” which I’ve learned to be okay with. I often give them away to people who I think can do better with them. I hope to work with others on them too, or to invest in some one day.

I don’t let the experience of inspiration sweep me away anymore. It’s still an amazing experience, though slowing it down also means I can make sure I don’t constantly bounce around from project to project without giving each one the space and time it needs to thrive, without needing to drop out of them in the middle, a painful feeling that I’m all too familiar with.

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