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I know how you feel.

I thought it was crazy too…

…but the more I thought about it – the more sense it made.

The more sense it made – the more it became just one less thing I gotta worry about.

Hear me out. It’s not complete list-lessness… just mostly.

Our lists are a distraction

Maybe you’re like me and you like to plan for the future.

So you make a list.

Maybe you’re like me and you like to keep track of ideas.

So you make a list.

Maybe you’re like me and you like to feel organized.

So you make a list.

Maybe you’re like me and you like to procrastinate.

So you make a list….

Instead of doing the work.

Unless we ACT on it – that list is just mental masturbation.

Unless we actually do something from that list it’s worse than not having a list at all – because it’s making us feel like we’re being organized and accomplishing something, even when we’re totally not.

Unless our lists motivate action, they’re just random bits of paper with crap written on them.

A death grip kills.

I used to covet every little idea I ever had.

I didn’t want to lose even one of them because I believed that the seed of genius could be found in each one.

I used to carry a voice recorder in my purse…

(given to me by my ex-boyfriend Karl – as a “sorry” for not being there for me the night my Dad died. He went to see The Watchmen with his “other” girlfriend instead. Karl is a douche bag).
Click here for more comics.

…to capture every little think I thought up while listening to podcasts and audiobooks.

I had sketchbooks that were filled with lists of ideas of comics to draw and graphic novel ideas to script and portrait series and licensing ideas…

It all sounds really smart. Of course you want to capture your ideas…

Except you don’t need to.

Most first ideas are just fragments of projects. They’re the seeds of better ideas to come.

Holding on tight to a fragment of an idea is as useful as plucking apple buds and hoping they’ll fruit.

They are little buds of ideas and not ready to bear fruit.

I’ve never followed through with any idea that I grabbed and tried to hold on to by putting it in a list.

I would return to my lists but they yielded no inspiration.

There is no juice or life to those ideas.

They are a burden – a burden based in fear.

The fear that there will be no more good ideas and we have to hoard every little scrap of idea tightly to ourselves.

They are old and dusty and a hindrance to the fresh ideas. The real ideas. The ideas that return.


Letting go allows return.

StarfishAssholeI stopped hoarding and listing when I started regular doing.

Regular practice is the creation source for ideas – doing makes more ideas to do… it’s fed by our action and involvement in the creative process.

Regular practice gave me more perspective on ideas… they are infinite and as common as assholes.

The ones that are valuable are the ideas that to return to us.

They cycle back in and become fuller and more fleshy. Sometimes they arrive and they are fat with promise and we can’t help but do them or plan a project around them and set due dates and plan shows and events…

That’s a fruitful idea – not a fragment.

The longer we’re creating – the quicker we encounter fruitful ideas…

I don’t have time for every idea – even the fruitful ones, but I don’t write them down any more. I let them go to return when they’re ready and to be different as I learn and become different in my own skin.

I no longer doubt that there will be no more ideas.

That is not the problem.

The problem now is the lack of time to embrace all the fruitful ideas that return.

I do have one list now that I still use.

When I write a post I can sometimes be sparked by 3 or 4 more ideas that can be posts in their own write. I keep those on a list in my phone – but I delete them if I don’t write about them in a timely manner.

They were sparked by an idea and they lose flavour and strength if I don’t write them and connect them to the original post.

This post is an inspired post and went on the list. The next one is too.

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