As I was listening yet another book on creativity, it occurred to me that I really did not “need” to learn more on this topic. Most people who know me would consider me to be creative already and I have been teaching workshops in this area for decades. And then a thought from James Clear’s Atomic Habits popped into my head: “I don’t need to because I do things I don’t need to do.”
- Those who routinely go to the gym when they don’t need to, don’t need to go because they go regularly
- People who save money when they don’t need to, don’t need to save because they save routinely
- Folks who clean their homes or maintain their yards when they don’t need to, don’t need to deep clean because they have a habit of regular maintenance
- Those who take a vacation don’t need to take a vacation because they regularly take time away
- Students who study when they don’t need to…well, you get the idea.
The same applies to me listening to a book on creativity, and the concept is relevant for most any positive habit that you wish to develop. Engaging in a practice is something that you do over time, not just once in hopes that the behavior embeds itself.
Think about the skills or habits that you wish to cultivate or maintain. The best way to do so is to work on those things – even when you don’t “need to”.
Atomic Habits by James Clear, 2018