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Drinking from the Well of Ideas

The answer to the question, "Where do your ideas come from?" is as elusive as the rainwater that flows downriver all the way into the sea. After all, we're all just another person, standing by the riverside, taking sips of its cold steam with just our bare hands. We can only drink a handful of ideas at a time. The rest flow down to the others waiting by the riverbed.

What most of us don't realize, however, is that capturing those ideas requires that we sit by the river day after day, taking sips at every chance or opportunity. We think that travelling upriver will lead us to a wellspring of ideas. However, even at the supposed peak, most ideas will only continue to flow through.

Ideas don't come in the way that we want them, either.

We may want to think that they appear in a linear fashion, guiding us from A to Z. But in the huge stream of wandering thoughts and impressions, there exists no form or structure.

Ideas are as shapeless as the water we drink from. It's ultimately up to us to give them a proper form and structure. And to do that, we have to keep at it. Don't stop! Keep dipping your fingers into that cold stream. Wiggle through each liquid molecule and cup them in your hands.

Droplets may crawl between your fingers and escape. But no matter. Just keep at it.

This is the struggle that every creative must live with. It's the life we've chosen to pursue, the challenge that we face each day. Some days we may feel as though it's hopeless, and so fail to draw from the stream.

But even when that happens, we know deep inside that we miss it. We miss the cool, fresh water we take in through our lips and draw into our bodies. We miss the chills that it sends down our spines. Without this water, we end up dry and dreary. With it, we are refreshed.

So don't stop drawing from that stream of consciousness.

Don't let up.

In time, you will reach the end. You'll slay the demons that haunt you in your sleep. You'll defeat the dragon that hinders your quest.

Don't give up.

Keep on honing and improving your craft. For the world needs more ideas brought to life.

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