Sleep On It - The Importance Of Taking A Step Back And Assessing Your Work Subjectively

Written By:

Shreyas Tongaonkar

In the fast-paced world of creativity, it's easy to get swept up in the excitement of your own creations. You've had that Eureka moment, the lightbulb above your head has flickered to life, and you're convinced that your latest creation is pure perfection. But before you dive headfirst into executing your grand vision, there's a simple yet often overlooked piece of advice that can make all the difference: "Sleep on it."

We've all been there, right? You're passionate about your work, and that passion can sometimes cloud your judgment. You're so enamored with your idea that you can't see its flaws, its imperfections, or its shortcomings. It's like falling in love; everything seems perfect in the beginning, but once the honeymoon phase is over, reality sets in. And that's precisely why taking a step back is crucial, especially in the creative field.

Imagine this scenario: You've spent hours, perhaps days, meticulously crafting your masterpiece. You've poured your heart and soul into it, and you're convinced it's your magnum opus. So, you hit that final button, publish it, and eagerly await the applause and admiration from the world. But when you wake up the next morning and revisit your creation, something strange happens. It's like a veil has been lifted, and suddenly, those flaws and imperfections you were blind to before are glaringly obvious.

What was once a stroke of genius now looks more like a series of hasty brushstrokes. Those subtle nuances you composed feel repetitive, and the plot twist in your story seems forced. You're left wondering, "What was I thinking?" It's a sobering moment, one that many creatives have experienced, and it can be a humbling one. But it's also an invaluable lesson in the power of perspective.

The act of sleeping on your work is like hitting the reset button on your brain. When you step away and allow yourself some distance, you gain fresh eyes.

You see your creation not as the passionate creator but as an objective observer.

This perspective shift can be the difference between a good idea and a great one, between mediocrity and excellence.

It's a phenomenon known as the "fresh perspective effect." When you're deeply engrossed in a project, your brain becomes fixated on certain aspects, and you might miss alternative solutions or creative opportunities. But after a good night's sleep or even just a few hours of separation, your brain reorients itself. It's as if your subconscious mind has been hard at work while you slumber, rearranging the pieces of the puzzle to reveal a clearer picture.

Now, it's important to note that "sleeping on it" doesn't mean procrastinating or abandoning your projects altogether. It's about taking calculated breaks, giving yourself the time and space to gain perspective. It's a disciplined practice of self-assessment and refinement. So, how can you make the most of this concept in your creative process?

  1. Set Aside Your Ego: Recognize that your initial infatuation with your creation might not equate to its quality. Be willing to accept criticism, even from yourself.
  2. Establish a Routine: Make it a habit to step away from your work regularly. Schedule breaks or set deadlines that allow for reflection before finalizing a project.
  3. Gather Feedback: Share your work with trusted colleagues or friends. They can offer fresh perspectives and valuable insights.
  4. Keep an Idea Journal: Jot down your initial thoughts and revisit them later. You'll be surprised at how your perspective changes over time.
  5. Embrace Iteration: Understand that creativity is an iterative process. Don't be afraid to revisit and revise your work until it truly shines.

In the world of creativity, it's easy to fall in love with our own ideas, but true innovation often comes from stepping back and taking an objective look. So, the next time you're struck by a brilliant idea, remember to "sleep on it." You might just wake up to find that your creation has transformed from good to extraordinary, all thanks to the power of a fresh perspective.

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Sync Labs is a design agency that crafts Brands, Websites, SaaS and Mobile Experiences using research led strategy and frameworks

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Sync Labs is a design agency that crafts Brands, Websites, SaaS and Mobile Experiences using research led strategy and frameworks