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Checkpoints: Perspiration

Having the idea is only the smallest part of making an idea happen. We look at the other 99% -- lots and lots of perspiration.

It has been said that success is “1% idea and 99% perspiration.” Illustrious artists and innovative business and creative minds impact the world with their “perspiration.” Perspiration is the endurance of one’s hardships, doubts, sleepless nights, marathon work schedules, and almost irrational determination.

Successful outcomes don’t just require hard work, they deserve it. An idea’s journey through conception, development and final execution should not rely upon lucky breaks, but rather, on focus and drive. The exhaustion that accompanies a project — whether physical, emotional or creative — can be a difficult roadblock to overcome during the creative process. After completion, however, these struggles offer fantastic insight into one’s comfort levels and if applied to future projects, will prove to be extremely beneficial.Creatives are great at generating ideas.  However, their perseverance to push innovative ideas forward remains a struggle.  The amount of time, energy, and sacrifice associated with executing ideas feels overwhelming.  The irony of perspiration is the juxtaposition of pain and pleasure.  Like any strenuous exercise associated with sweat and perspiration, one experiences the pain before the pleasurable and measurable outcome.

When the initial elation of a breakthrough idea is replaced by the reality of workload and application, it’s easy to feel daunted and even disheartened. A creative’s natural instinct is to want to remain only in idea-generation mode, but embracing sweat as a critical element of production is the defining factor between creative and creation.

Explore more tips, and check out Behance’s guest postings for small businesses trying to make ideas happen, hosted at American Express’ OpenForum.

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Comments (2)
  • Smarky

    This is a cool time to post something like this, I have been thinking about it a lot. I’m currently crunching on a project and trying to bring it to completion, I’m really exhausted and i’m trying to figure out if it’s worth just pushing forward or if sometimes we just have to slow down and take a break.

  • nicklausdeyring

    Very closely related to ‘discipline’.

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