Tuesday, July 3, 2012

If You Always Do What You Always Did ...


... You'll always get what you always got.

I first heard this little ditty a number of years ago at a professional meeting. The idea was to help us think outside the box, be innovative in solving problems. If we can't think of new ideas, the speaker said, we should try driving or walking home by a different route. Or rearrange our office furniture or our furniture at home. Color our hair. Whatever "drastic" action it would take to shake up the status quo in our lives and rearrange stagnant brain cells.

For instance ...

I'm committed to walking first thing in the morning. I feel better, my day (usually) goes better and yes, I feel noble for doing it. (Yeah - I know - it doesn't take much.) Since I dislike walking in extreme or even not so extreme cold or heat, I've become a treadmill walker. Walking on the treadmill also proved addictive - I've become addicted to the instant feedback of the numbers on my LCD screens. It makes me feel like I've worked harder. (I told you it doesn't take much.)

However, several days ago, when I went outside to get the morning paper (yes, I still read a "real" newspaper), I realized that it was a beautiful morning so I decided to walk outside, something I used to do all the time. A funny thing happened. My creative juices started flowing. I'd been pondering today's post for a while and just couldn't seem to get my head around it. The ideas suddenly began to flow, something that hadn't happened in a while 

From there, my thought processes took me to photography. If we always shoot photos the same way, from the same perspective, with the same lens and settings ... we're going to get the same results each time. So let's mix it up today ... longer if you wish, and change our perspective, if you will. Pull out a lens that's been gathering dust. Go to a new location, if possible. Whatever it takes to shake things up.

And, honestly, this isn't just about our creative lives. It's about our lives in general. Whenever I'd come home from work complaining, my husband would ask the same question, "What are you going to do about it?" I would hem and haw and he'd say, "Dotti, if you can't change the [fill in the blank], change your attitude toward it." I think this is good advice for us to remember every day.

How about you? Have you found that this works in your life? In your work? In your art?

Let's change our attitudes, change our perspective, and see what fun things we can find. You might discover a new planet ... or maybe just find a spectacular "Water" photo for our Flickr page.





11 comments:

Deanna said...

Wonderful advice and post. I am really crabby today so maybe if I do something different I might shed my crabbiness and get a new perspective.

heyjudephotography said...

Love this post Dotti. (We are thinking alike again this week :) I agree that mixing it up a little helps with our creativity and our moods!

terriporter said...

Well, being a girl of habits and routines, it is always hard for me to mix it up and go outside my box. But I know that whenever I do, it is always rewarding. Changing up my location, perspective, lens, etc. always ends up stirring my creativity and getting me out of a rut. Thanks for the reminder that I need to do that more often! By the way, great photo to illustrate your post!

Cathy H. said...

Great words! I always get a new brust of energy and creativity when I change things up! I'm on my second year of taking a photo everyday, or almost everyday!! This month I'm trying something different! I have four lens so I will choose a lens each week and only shoot my daily photo with that one! I think it will help me be more confident in my zoom and macro lens especially. Hope those creative juices flow!!

terriporter said...

Cathy, what a great way to get yourself to use other lenses and become more confident in using them! Love this idea!

stephmull said...

I love your idea too, Cathy! Now this makes me wish I had more than two lenses!! :-)

stephmull said...

What wonderful, inspiring words, Dotti! And so timely too....as I"m contemplating my upcoming post. I have an idea but the words are not flowing. I need to get out and see the world from a fresh perspective. And I need to remind myself of this when I'm feeling photographically challenged, too!

Linda said...

Love this, Dotti! You know I'm a morning walker! If I miss a morning, I'm out of sorts all day! My walks help me clear my head and sort things out and I do write blog posts while I'm out there! I'm also looking for things to photograph! Just trying new things (like planking!) helps keep it fun for me!

xo,
Linda

Kim Stevens said...

Love this post, as this is something I think about often - changing my perspective. My perspective has an effect on my photography and on my life and how I see things. In fact I wrote a post about it last year and gave the example of looking at a room through a mirror and how when I do that I see everything in a new light. I realize that if I stand where I have always stood nothing will ever look different. Thanks for the reminder...xo

Oh and P.S. - One thing that really challenged me when we went to the San Antonio missions last December was that I only allowed myself to shoot with my 50mm, but was pleasantly surprised as it pushed me to think and stand differently.

Claudia@DipityRoad said...

Love your idea Cathy! GREAT infact.

Claudia@DipityRoad said...

My all time favorite quote by Wayne Dyer:

When you change the way you look at things...
The things you look at change.

Post a Comment

Thank you for sharing part of your day with us. If for any reason you are unable to leave a comment here on this post, please leave your comment on our Facebook page or in our Flickr discussion group. We love hearing from you!

 
© Focusing On Life