Ideas love constraints

The painter must create within the boundaries of her canvas (or exhibit) using the tools and supplies she has available to her. The inventor works within the laws of time and space and motion. The architect designs within the realm of physics. The writer, the constraints of language and a static page.

It’s far too easy to use constraints as a reason to not try something creative.

Saying that your boss, teacher, or partner won’t let you do something, or that you don’t have the right tools or resources for the job, aren’t valid excuses when it comes to being creative, they’re merely the constraints you have to work within.

The artist doesn’t let a lack of fresh canvas debilitate her. She merely paints over the past work. The creative entrepreneur doesn’t let a lack of support or resources hinder him from starting a local drawing club. He sets it up as part of a local cafe weeknight and invites his closest friends. The writer doesn’t let the lack of ideas prevent them from writing almost every day. They merely sit down and write whatever comes to mind in the moment.

If you want to find an excuse not to create, or to ignore exploring an idea, that’s easy to do. But when you do use an excuse not to move on an idea, you have nobody to blame but yourself.

If every architect blamed gravity for their inability to make something awe-inspiring, we’d all be living in caves.

After-all, constraints are whatever we think they are.