Constraints

One of the best ways to fuel creativity is to add constraints. It's a lot easier to face a blank page when you have a prompt than it is to simply be told to draw anything. Having a deadline helps too.

Sometimes, seemingly impossible constraints can produce great work.

Beethoven famously composed his best music completely deaf. Here's Arthur C. Brooks writing for The Washington Post:

In the last decade of Beethoven’s life (he died at 56), his deafness was complete, so music could reside only in his imagination . . . During that period, Beethoven wrote the music that would define his unique style, change music permanently and give him a legacy as one of the greatest composers of all time.

[ . . . ]

Deafness freed Beethoven as a composer because he no longer had society’s soundtrack in his ears.

So if you're struggling to create something, don't be afraid to add restrictions.

Those limits might set you free.

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