Stop Critiquing and Start Creating, How to Defy and Destroy our Barriers to Change
A good friend told me there are three types of people in the world:
There was a time in my life when I thrived in my role as a Critic. I had an opinion about everything and spent many sleepless nights brooding over ideological arguments and creating fake debate scenarios in my head. It was mania, an obsession, fueled by the high of feeling “right.”
One day I realized that my very critical opinions were taking up a lot of time and making me a very angry person.
I also realized I was against a lot more than I was actually for.
Take politics. No matter who is in the White House, it’s easy to critique the policies of a President without having to constructively engage in the political process. I find it fascinating how many people have very strong political opinions but can’t name their local representative in Congress.
But if you look at the people who’ve made the greatest change in the world, they’re the ones who spent the least amount of their time as critics and consumers.
I believe human beings were made by a God who loves to create, and in his benevolence, he made us a lot like him. Whether 7 days or 7 billion years, God is at his best when he’s creating. So are we.
I also believe that people and the positions they hold can change. Which means it’s our job to try and move from a life of consumption and criticism and into a life of creative action.
Maybe you’ve already begun. If so, it’s your job to cultivate creativity in others.
This isn’t just for artists, activists, engineers, or entrepreneurs. I think everyone has the ability to create with great purpose. This is one of the reasons I’ve started this blog.
I believe ordinary people have the unique ability to impact the lives of others. And if you’re reading this with a few minutes to spare and high speed internet, you also have a moral responsibility to do so.
Work can be monotonous. Each day I try and put one thing on my to-do list that requires a fresh creative punch. Oftentimes this is as simple as a 10 minute phone call to bounce a new idea off a friend. I find this simple act of forcing myself to create actually invigorates all the other things I’ve been avoiding all day.
Some final thoughts:
Creativity is an exponential force. It produces better work that produces better work.
Creativity is also a repelling force. The more we create, the more it repels us away from the dangers of over consumption and over criticism.
Questions to ask yourself:
What moves you? What drives you? What infuriates you? And how can you creatively engage in a way that uses your innate gifts and abilities, instead of just responding as a critic or consumer?
Start today. The worst thing you can do is postpone your creative action until tomorrow.