This year My One Word is CREATE.
Giving up my iPod for Lent has had an unexpected outcome - my time on the treadmill has become a boon of creativity. If I run without distractions, it seems the ideas begin to run as well. Like a flowing faucet.
Before I would usually run to music. I go faster and harder with the pounding beat in my ear. I'd work out harder, with less perceived effort, with my iPod. I knew I was going to miss that. I figured I'd just read while I jogged - but reading makes me have to go slower than I want. Or I figured I'd use one of these cool running videos from Virtual Active.
Then I hopped on the tread-deck the other day in complete silence. And nothing to read. I even darkened the room a bit. And let my thoughts go. They went to interesting places. They came up with useful solutions. And they dreamed new dreams.
Henry Ford once said he didn’t want executives who worked constantly. He insisted those who were always working at their desks were not being the most productive. He wanted people who would stop their work, prop their feet up and dream some fresh dreams. Henry believed that only he who has the luxury of time can originate a creative thought.
The luxury of time. That's what being on the treadmill gives me. I can't wash the dishes, or cook dinner, or write a devotion, or grade papers, or fold laundry, or declutter my office, or do my taxes while I'm jogging on the treadmill. So I don't. I just jog, and I find that I run into creative thoughts every quarter mile or so.
The same is true for me if I walk on the beach alone, or meander through a park - although there I can also become so engrossed in my environment that it dominates my thoughts. Which isn't a bad thing! But I'm interested to see if the treadmill can become for me a place of creative thought.
Can the sound of it starting up - like the ringing of the bell for Pavlov's dogs - trigger my creative juices?
The difficulty, I've found, is trying to jot the gist of my ideas down while on the treadmill so I'll remember them after my post-workout shower!
What about you, where or when do you do your best creative thinking?
Do you afford yourself the "luxury of time?"