“When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this – you haven’t.” – Thomas Edison
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Give up. These words get etched into our minds the moment we face Resistance. They nag at us relentlessly. They are like a hungry mosquito who just won’t stop biting you. The voice in your mind echos again “Give up.”
How can we go on? Nothing works. We’ve tried everything. We stare at the canvas wondering what went wrong. Should I start over? “Give up.”
Many times this voice wins. We are drained. We stop what we ‘re doing. It’s too difficult to go on.
These are the moments that define us. Instead of giving up, we need to reflect on our work. Did we really try everything? Have we taken a break from our work? Is there another solution I haven’t even considered?
When you think you’ve tried everything, just remember, you haven’t. Thomas Edison was once asked by his associate, “Isn’t it a shame that with the tremendous amount of work you have done you haven’t been able to get any results?” Edison replied, “‘Results! Why, man, I have gotten a lot of results! I know several thousand things that won’t work.”
Instead of giving up on a piece you love, try looking at it in a new way. In Ryan Holiday’s The Obstacle is the Way, he talks about turning roadblocks into solutions. What can we learn from what others have done?Often times, solutions come from places where we aren't expecting them Click To Tweet
You don’t necessarily need to look at what other artists have done. In fact, often times, it can be detrimental to look within the same industry. What have people in other wakes of life done to overcome a problem? Often times, solutions come from places where we aren’t expecting them.When we work on projects too long we can lose focus Click To Tweet
One way to do this is to take a break from your work. When we work on projects too long we can lose focus. We can’t see the forest for the trees.
When this happens, work on a different project, or stop working completelly. Take a break and do something different. Go for a walk. Read a book. Watch a documentary. Do anything to get your mind off the subject.
Then, something miraculous will happen. The answer will come to you. You will be washing your hair in the shower, when an insight strikes you. That is the moment you get back to work.
Too often we give up on a project too soon. We feel like it’s consuming all of our time. We don’t think there’s a solution, but often times there is a solution. We just haven’t tried it yet.