Creative Chaos

by Alexa Francisco

Creative Chaos

Creative Chaos

“The great task, rarely achieved, is to blend creative intensity with relentless discipline so as to amplify the creativity rather than destroy it. When you marry operating excellence with innovation, you multiply the value of your creativity.” -Jim Collins

As long as I can remember I have been swept up by waves of creative chaos...

They’re almost impossible to control, unpredictable and vary in intensity. I work around them, within them, or get swept up by them, and they often come on strong and out of nowhere, taking me far, far away from my very necessary and reasonable to-do list.  

There are some days I’m left feeling like I didn’t do enough of what I was supposed to if I want to be continuously building upon the future I see for myself. Having the internet at my disposal, setting my own hours for work, and being fairly decent at expressing ideas through a very accessible assortment of mediums strengthen those gnarly fucking waves. All I want to do is create. My workspace, if not a coffee shop full of strangers turned friends, is a homely little spot filled with instruments, sewing machines, knitting machines, motorcycles and of course, more internet.  

They are distractions I am very grateful to have, and distractions that reflect my progress personally which is really cool, but they are distractions nonetheless when something else needs to be done.

For me, it always comes down to being more disciplined.

It might sound silly, but I have to remind myself sometimes that I am a human, not a wave, and hold myself accountable for what I do, or, don’t do...

I don’t have a shot in hell at controlling the weather’s impulses but I can control my own (most of the time, at least).

“Self-discipline isn’t just something that happens once and you’re done. It’s a practice.” -Emily Thompson

What do you do when you’re swept up in a creative flurry but it’s not the right time to let it out?

As per the advice I have accrued from more disciplined creatives, including my partner Nick who’s brain completely opposes mine, I do my best to implement a sustained effort day after day to complete a simple to-do list before I let the creative chaos out via my hands. You know, get shit done before you have fun type of thing? He’s freakishly good at that…  

I, however, am a stubborn ass who detests most types of structure to a fault. But the more I suck it up and deal with it, the more I have to admit that I love what it brings into my life.  

I know, a to-do list may seem like a ridiculously anti-climactic treatment for creative chaos, but it is a direct counter to the issue which is what treatments are supposed to do, right?

The thing a lot of us crave most is freedom, but we won’t achieve that any more through chaos than we would through restriction. The two are synergistic, and the sooner we get used to that, the better off we’ll be.   

Which one could you benefit from embracing a little more?  


Alexa Francisco

by Alexa Francisco

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