Guest blog spot by Kelly Murray, CBI Group team member
So, I’m on a Jack White kick these days. Formerly part of the 2000s alternative rock duo, The White Stripes, he launched his solo music career earlier this year and his album Blunderbuss is being heralded as one of the best of 2012. I was lucky enough to see him perform over the weekend at the Firefly Music Festival held in Dover, Delaware.
While I can rave on and on about how incredible his live performance was (and it WAS incredible!), I actually want to talk about his creative process. Why? Well, I think it reflects an aspect of this week’s cultural tenet of Right Things Right which means making sure that we are doing the things needed to reach our goals – prioritizing time and adding value to our work.
In 2009, a documentary entitled Under the Great White Northern Lights was released which chronicled the White Stripes’ 2007 tour in Canada. In the film, White discusses how he maintains his work ethic to stay inspired:
“I mean, not every day you’re going to wake up and the clouds are going to part and the rays from heaven are going to come down and you’re going to write a song from it. I mean, sometimes you just get in there and force yourself to work and maybe something good will come out of it . . .You know, force yourself into it. Book only four or five days in the studio and force yourself to record an album in that time. Deadlines and things make you creative.”
I think he has a great point. Contemporary rock stars or not, we can all take into consideration how we prioritize our time and stay focused on our goals. Sure, we may not be spending our days writing songs or picking at the guitar but, no matter what our responsibilities involve, we have to make sure that the actions we are taking are bringing us closer to our goal.
For White, setting tight deadlines for himself leads to creative inspiration and ultimately, one step closer to completing his goal of making an album. What steps can you take to improve your productivity and add value to your work? How can you make sure that you’re doing the right things the right way?
Sometimes, all it takes is forcing ourselves to take a step back and rethink about what we’re doing and if its the right thing to do. Make sure that you’re doing things are getting you closer to your goal, not working around it!