Have you ever played Bananagrams? It is a fun, fast paced game where each player builds words using letter tiles – you continue to build while using as many letters as possible. At any time you can suddenly find you have letters you can’t do anything with…..you can ‘dump’ the one letter to pick up three more; OR, be patient, pull apart some words and start again. I really don’t like to ‘dump’ but breaking up my words is also not easy!
Recently I participated in a great creativity workshop where we were asked what challenges us the most in completing a project. I’ve got 2 challenges: 1) not knowing when to stop; and 2) stopping in my tracks.
Having a deadline certainly helps with #1. My creative process requires that I work on a piece and then put it down and come back a day or two later. It gives me a new perspective to look at it with fresh eyes. I almost always see where I can add a little more and this can be a bit of a rabbit hole. However, I’m working on cultivating an eye for ‘just enough’ and I think I’m getting better. For those real moments of indecision I’m blessed with a husband who has a great eye and straightforward advice.
#2 happens when things are not going as planned and I get paralyzed and just stop. Much easier to go to another project! It was at this point in the workshop the analogy popped into my head and I jotted down the word “Bananagrams”. I’m not a perfectionist but I admit to trying to squeeze work in or ‘finish a little more’ when I am tired and that leads to not-so-great stitching. The challenge is to keep going and not just throw it aside in disgust!! Just as resorting words or dumping letters can be strategies in Bananagrams for keeping in the game; ripping out stitches and restarting your work can make you love it again and clear the path to finishing your project.
What is your challenge?