Originally shared MARCH 6 2018
Earlier this winter, I decided to sell an extra camera body, 4 lenses, and several other accessories. Since I had first gotten into photography, I had a huge wish list, and the mentality that I needed more and more to be a good photographer. Obviously my equipment is important, but something had shifted in me as I began to focus on my creativity and expression rather than what gear I had. I realized, a good photographer or artist really only needs the basic tools to create magic. How could I use what I already had to create an image in mind? This has put me up in trees and in all sorts of strange places to get a certain shot. Some of my most liked photos were created this way.
When I cleaned out my closet and limited myself to a minimal wardrobe, I noticed that all of a sudden had so much to wear. I saw pieces that I had never really paid much attention to in a different light. I began to experiment with how I put clothing together and how I accessorized. A dress as a top? Yes! A shirt over a dress? Yes! Shorts as dress clothing? Yup.
Here is where I’m going with this: The less options we have, the more creative we get.
We do more with less.
There’s a technical term for this, and it’s called “constraint mindset.” The larger the constraint (think, the less we have), the more creative we become with what we do have. We do not need more and more and more.
We are conditioned to think that we need abundance. Don’t fall into the trap that successful people are successful because they had access to things you didn’t, and if only you had x,y,z you’d be “making it,” too.
I don’t need a drone, a $3,000 underwater set up, or a new lens to be a better artist. I don’t need a closet full of clothing to be stylish. I don’t need a pantry full of ingredients to make a delicious dinner. I think of this as a parent as well… Bodie is better off with a limited amount of stuff. I want him to think creatively with what he has. Parents, don’t let the Land of Nod catalogue fool you!
So I encourage you to think about how this applies to your own life. What are you convinced you need more of? Can you cut yourself off from your wish list for awhile, and instead, focus on playing with what you already have? Let me know what you think below.
Less Options = More Creativity