DesignThe Business of Graphic Design

Blissdom ROI, Part II

By March 22, 2012 One Comment

The Story of the Blue Mug

I recently wrote a post about one of my Blissdom Conference sessions. It was about the advice the speaker gave about “Making time for Joy”

After the speaker finished, one of the ladies at my table told this story which really clarified the point Alli Worthington was making in her presentation.

(The story is my interpretation)

The Blue Mug

A talented and gifted sculptor had his own business. He loved his work since it allowed him to create such a great variety of pieces. It challenged him and developed his creativity and it brought him joy.

One day he created a beautiful mug – it was an instant favorite in his shop and he quickly began to receive many orders for it. People loved the quality and the beautiful blue color he had chosen. He was thrilled that he a so many happy customers that loved his creation.

But it wasn’t long until he realized he was ONLY making blue mugs now. He was a machine, working long hours, repeating the same thing day in, day out. It snatched the joy he had in being a creative and the pressure was intense to meet the orders.

It wasn’t long until he had a conversation with his friend and they discussed his problem.

“How could something I was so excited about creating, now be such a drudgery?”

His friend looked at him and offered this – “the enjoyment comes when you are creating, not when you’re recreating, and when you spend EVERY minute working to meet a deadline, it steals your creativity and no longer brings you joy”

So the sculptor re-evaluated his business. He hired an apprentice to make the blue mugs, purposely sought out more creative projects and found his joy in sculpting once again.

The story made me re-evaluate my work load.

Do I have any Blue Mugs? Is there anything I’m doing that soaks up all my time, which could be handed off to other professionals?

Do I take enough time to recharge my creative batteries?

Do I spend enough time seeking creative projects which challenge me or am I willing to do the same thing over and over, because it’s easy?

I’m working on my answers, meanwhile

What’s YOUR Blue Mug? 

About Becky Bayne

Becky is a graphic designer with over 30 years of experience. She is the founder and president of Becky's Graphic Design which she began in 1992. She and her husband live outside of Nashville, TN where she enjoys creative photography, gardening, and baking for her family.

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