Do habits help (or hinder) creativity?
Do you stick to certain daily habits? Would you think that habits help (or hinder) your creativity?
This might surprise you, but many creative people have strong daily habits. And we go to enormous lengths to maintain them.
Habits allow our mental bandwidth to be channeled to create new stuff (art, music, computer programs, legal strategies, etc), rather than being wasted on the mundane (for example, which route should I take to work?).
If this topic fascinates you (as it does me), you might like to check out the highly rated book ‘Daily Rituals: How Artists Work‘ by Mason Currey.
One of the conclusions of ‘Daily Rituals’ is that there is no set of habits that is best for creativity. But when we develop habits that suit our values and lifestyle, we are setting ourselves up for success.
Some of my habits include eating oatmeal for breakfast every day (all 7 days of the week, all 52 weeks of the year, with very rare exceptions), and heading to my studio to start painting as soon as my sons leave for school.
I have some other daily habits (bad ones) that I’m trying to kick and that do not contribute to my creativity – like eating far too much chocolate. But that’s a subject for another time.
What daily habits do you find most helpful?
At cocktail parties and other fun social events, people often ask me questions about life as an artist. They are answered in my ‘Top 50 Questions’ list. This blog post is the latest addition to my Top 50. To see the other questions & answers, click here.