Power of Personal Projects
Personal projects have the power to remind us of true self-motivation. It’s about doing things purely for the sake of creating.
My mom was always the bookworm while I was never the big reader. And when challenged, I would respond with the poor excuse of just how many things I was obligated to read for classes. Unfortunately, when we apply my equivalence attitude to our creative projects, I believe we lose out on their inherent value.
Ji Lee (Creative Director, Google Creative Labs) gave a speech on “The Transformative Power of Personal Projects” that is by far one of my favorites. Recanting his launch of “The Bubble Project” (which involved printing 50,000 blank speech bubble stickers as a platform to jazz up public ads all around the world), Ji comments on the need to sometimes just do things yourself and the professional benefits of personal practice.
When there’s no outside deadline or no outlined assignment delegated from the top, we are left with a blank starting page. That fresh start continually reminds me of my motivations and consistently challenges me to satisfy my internal critic. If you haven’t set aside time for a (serious) side project recently, I highly recommend it because you will find a refreshingly daunting, satisfying, (not to mention fun) personal experience.