Laziness kills (your creativity)…

The winter of 2013/2014 was not a cold winter in The Netherlands. It felt more like a six month lasting autumn. Endless drizzling, grey days… I had one client at that time in Amsterdam and and traveled mainly by car. The route I took was the same route every day, but I didn’t mind. It started in the morning near the small lakes of the “Loosdrechtse plassen” in Hilversum (my home town), past some meadows, and ended in the business district of Amsterdam. And somehow, every day I saw that one tree. It was lonely, it was naked, and it was just standing there, every cold rainy day. I noticed how the grey days effected my mood, which gave me an idea for a picture. All I needed was the right foggy weather to make this shot. I had this picture in my mind for nearly six weeks, when finally I decided the weather conditions were perfect. And what happened? I was tired, wanted to lay down and eat, and did not want to ride my bike for 3KM (2 miles) to take a picture during bad weather.

The lonely naked tree

I almost didn’t deserve this picture, since I was almost too lazy to get out for some photography.

At that point, as I sat down on the couch, I became a little angry with myself. What was I thinking? That picture has been in my mind for six weeks and now the perfect opportunity presented itself and I was to lazy? So I got up, took my bike, rode it for 10 minutes and took some pictures. And in the end it all worked out, I took the picture I had in mind.

Laziness almost prevented me from taking pictures, while photography is a real passion of mine. That is one of the reasons I started this blog, I needed a game plan to continue doing what I like to do. I have thought of a couple tips for those of us trying to overcame laziness:

  • Just do it (like Nike). Schedule your calender, block some hours to do what you need (or want) to do. Make sure you schedule regularly, to make it part of your daily/weekly rhythm.
  • Have a rhythm. I know, I said it before, but it is really important! Creating a rhythm is exercising your “overcoming laziness-skills”.
  • Have a game plan. Write down what  you want to accomplish, when you want to accomplish it, and how you are going to do this (like a blog). And stick to your plan!
  • Be hard on yourself, but love yourself. Don’t get mad at yourself if you don’t reach your goals, reward yourself when you reach your goals.
  • Take small steps. You don’t know how long you will live, but don’t try to reach all your goals in one year. Make sure you don’t get bored next year. 😉
  • Think about the consequences: Whenever I am lazy, I have a hard time accepting myself and I feel unhappy. But when I am active/productive, I feel happy and satisfied. For me, knowing how being lazy or active influences my mood, is a good drive to do what I want and need to do.
  • Share: You are not alone, find someone to help you and join you on your journey away from laziness.

Keep one thing in mind however: what you consider laziness, might be being really (chronically) tired. So listen to your body, but be completely honest towards yourself. If you feel you are tired for a long time, talk to your doctor.

I think working against laziness is an endless battle. But I am working on it, and it gives me a feeling of satisfaction. I hope it will do the same for you!

Kind regards,

Tieme

The lonely tree

A lonely tree during a misty evening in Hilversum, The Netherlands. This was a second photo I took on that particular day I decided to stop being lazy.

21 Comments

  1. Reply

    Too true about the laziness, unfortunately… Once you give in it gets harder to get your lazy butt up and go out to take a picture. When my camera was new I tended to put it in my handbag before I went to work just in case I saw something I liked on the way. Over time, though, I couldn’t even be bothered to take it out of the bag so I stopped taking it with me.
    Recently I realised that even when I go on photo outings with my camera bag, I walk past something and instead of following my instinct and taking out the camera to shoot, I start to think about whether it’s really worth taking the camera out… That needs to change, I just realised that reading your post – thanks for the virtual kick in the butt! 🙂

    • Reply

      Hi Kiki!

      Thank you for your wonderful reply! I am very happy it helped you a bit 🙂 That is one of the goals of my blog! I hope I didn’t kick too hard, it was meant to be a friendly reminder to all of us 😉

      Oh my oh my, getting rid of being lazy is so difficult! I can relate to your comment about the new camera in the bag.. Always with you, but it slowly stays home more often. Last weekend I bought a new bag. It’s a laptop-bag that fits a camera too, which is nice, since I usually carry one or two laptop-bags and a camera-bag. Now I don’t have a reason to leave my camera at home.. However, I need to take it out of the bag more.

      But most important: You should enjoy doing so! I hope you do and wish you all the passion and creativity in life and in photography!

      Have a great Sunday and a great week! Thank you for replying, it is a virtual kick in the butt back to me 😉

      Kind regards,
      Tieme

  2. JohnAmes

    Reply

    Tieme, I don’t know why this is but often it is offsetting rather than centering the subject that makes for the stronger image, witness these 2 photographs.

    • Reply

      Hi John! Thank you for your comment!

      I agree, it is because the center is where our eye expects the tree to be. Offsetting it (rule of thirds) brings tension to the photo.

      For the first photo I chose a center composition to create a different look. It reflects my feelings that day. The composition in the center is predictable, a bit “down” (low saturation), foggy, grey…

      The second however photo reflects how I wanted to feel and how the scene made me feel after taking the first photo: Relaxed and calm.

      Hope you have a great weekend and a great week ahead!
      Tieme

  3. Rekha

    Reply

    sometimes indulging in indolence is good;) as we can the see the result, loved the first snap it is soothing.

    • Reply

      Thank you for your comment(s) 😉 Rekha! Taking it slow surely can be a good think! That’s why said it is important to listen to your body! I believe there is a difference between patience and laziness 🙂

      Have a great week yourself! And good looking searching for a keyboard 😉

      Kind regards,
      Tieme

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