The “growth mindset” has become a bit of a cliché, but there’s a good reason for that. Approaching things with a beginner’s mind is something we should all aspire to. On a similar note, The Abundant Mindset, one of my favorite chapters from Rick Rubin’s The Creative Act, describes something very similar and equally powerful.
“A river of material flows through us. When we share our works and our ideas, they are replenished. If we block the flow by holding them all inside, the river cannot run and new ideas are slow to appear.
In the abundant mindset, the river never runs dry. Ideas are always coming through. And an artist is free to release them with the faith that more will arrive.”
“Choosing to live in scarcity leads to stagnation. If we work on one project forever, we never get to make another. The fear of drought and the impulse for perfectionism prevent us from moving on and block the river’s flow. Each mindset evokes a universal rule: whatever we concentrate on, we get.“
“Our life’s work is far greater than any individual container. The works we do are at most chapters. There will always be a new chapter, and another after that. Though some might be better than others, that is not our concern. Our objective is to be free to close one chapter and move on to the next, and to continue that process for as long as it pleases us. Your old work isn’t better than your new work. And your new work isn’t better than the old. There will be highs and lows throughout an artist’s life. To assume there was a golden period and you’re past it is only true if you accept that premise. Putting your best effort in at each moment, in each chapter, is all we can ever hope to accomplish.”
Let those ideas flow!