29 June 2020 Business

The power of nothing

Gareth Ward recommends taking stock and allowing yourself some time out. Often, it is during the quiet moments in which the bright ideas are born.

The poets and gurus were on to something. There is indeed a peacefulness in the deep dark woods and we ought to stop what we do in the daily round of unexpected calls, problem solving and making preparations for the next presentation. Add in the hassle of frequent online webinars, seminars and conferences, and far from lockdown being a time of relative quiet, it has become even more frenetic than ‘business as usual’ whatever that now means.

Many took stock at the start of this period, but have since lapsed into the daily turmoil. And with a further easing of lockdown, the chase will accelerate. More than ever we ought to stop, sit, turn off the phone, stare out of the window and think for 15 minutes or so. Beyond the glass is where the ideas are.

Designers already know this. Much of their day will be spent, not manipulating a mouse, but mulling over a challenge and letting ideas come to the surface in the space that staring into nothing allows. It may not look it, but the designer who is apparently doing nothing, is in fact hard at it. They understand that creativity comes from doing nothing. And now creative thinking is needed more than ever. Try it.

Gareth Ward