Knowing what to search for

Searching means you at least have some idea about what you’re searching for.

If you don’t know what you’re looking for, then why are you searching in the first place? Searching for inspiration, as an example, is the type of thing that gets confused with procrastination more often than not. If you can’t get specific about what it is you’re searching for, then you’re not really seeking out inspiration, but instead putting off the real work.

Rather than looking for “design inspiration,” you should be seeking out “the perfect layout for a printed ad.”

Instead of looking for “the perfect blog post topic,” you should should be searching for “the right questions to ask in a post headline.”

If scientists and space explorers were searching space for anything at all, then anything would be news worthy and we would all be disappointed. Knowing that they’re searching for potential life on a certain type of planet, with a specific type of atmosphere and a specific distance from a star, makes their search more difficult but also more rewarding if, and when, they find what they’ve been searching for.

When pursuing creative inspiration, you should be searching for the details, not the generic information. If you don’t already have some level of detail to start with, you’re not ready to seek out inspiration. First know where you’re at, then get specific by seeking out inspiration for the details.

Otherwise you’re not searching for inspiration, you’re just wandering.

Photo by Adam Evans.