I have been in a creative slump recently. I have been procrastinating by watching endless hours of sitcoms, browsing articles on my unending RSS feed and lurking around on Facebook. In one of my marathon reading sessions, I stumbled up on this article – Q&A with Austin Kleon, artist and author, ‘Show Your Work!’. In his book Steal Like An Artist, Austin talks about the value of being boring. He said, that the principle of “Being Boring” was inspired by a quote by Gustave Falkland –
Be regular and orderly in your life so you can be violent and original in your work.
This statement struck a cord with me because I’m someone who needs constant stimulation in order to be motivated and get work done. If I’m not excited about something, it is very difficult for me to get a move on things. The opposite is equally true – I can stay up 48hours at a stretch to complete a compelling goal. So, when am not feeling particularly motivated but have a bunch of things that I need to complete, I seek stimulus in articles or videos or Facebook. That’s where I get my fix of “new” and “exciting”. Clearly, this is not the path to productivity.
I’ve decided to try and purposely “Be Boring” for the next few days and find out if it’s actually as terrible as I imagine it to be. Given the choice between consuming new information v/s completing a seemingly monotonous task, I will choose the latter. Just thinking about it makes me fall asleep but I want to try it out, just for fun. I have a feeling that I will be surprised.