In reading (or I should say, listening) to Adam Grant’s book, Originals, I found myself really leaning into to his discussion around procrastination. It was refreshing and a different perspective than one we hear most often. I felt seen and valued for the way I am wired, and how my energy moves.
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See, there is a direct correlation to procrastination and creativity.
Yet, the interesting thing is that how this correlation plays out is not the same for all of us. And, as I was listening to Adam’s research on the topic, I realized I could easily make some parallel observations upon the definition (or lack thereof) in our Human Design chart.
Procrastination is actually a superpower for creativity in some people, like me, who have a defined Root Center. The Center that guides us to process the energy of Divine Timing and amplified pressure. And, when I say my Root is defined … I am not kidding. It’s my most defined Center in my chart and I have all but two gates activated.
Now, for someone who has their Root Center open (no gates activated) or undefined (some gates activated, but not directly connected to another Center), procrastination is often the antithesis of creativity.
The amplified pressure someone with an open or undefined Root experiences actually can be paralyzing and force them to stall or feel stuck, or take action prematurely, rather than being waiting for right timing to tap into juicy creative pulses or surges.
Creativity is based in the alignment of how you understand, use, and know the energy of your Root Center (in Human Design).
Procrastination is actually a space for rumination if you have a defined Root. If you have an open Root, it’s more about prioritizing all the things moving and then often taking action sooner versus later.
Procrastination has two definitions, based on the context of which it lives. If you have a defined Root, procrastination actually means a rumination period to look at possibilities and potential solutions. It’s not that you don’t think about something when the idea or response comes in, it’s just that you don’t take action on it right away. I mean, I love me a good 11th hour push. And, when aligned, I produce my best work.
The rumination one with a defined Root experiences is a way for creativity to be birth over a period of time. You create space to play with all the possibilities and ways you could bring the idea to form. You wait for the time to be right to bring that action or inspiration forward.
Take a speaking engagement, for instance. When I get asked to speak, I often don’t build the actual content or slide deck until the day or night beforehand. When a company asks me for my slide deck in advance, I have to let them know that that is not my process, and it stifles my creativity. However, I will play with the presentation in my mind over and over from the moment I get the contract to when I actually deliver it.
I brainstorm and play with other presentations I’ve already given. I think about ways to engage with the audience differently. I look for interesting threads in work I’ve already created. But, as for the deck itself, until I actually need to have it done, I sit and stare at a blank screen. The inspiration that comes from Divine Timing isn’t aligned. I know intuitively when I need to start (and finish) a task or project. If I try to do so prematurely, I sit with writer’s block and a ton of frustration.
So, I don’t force it. I let my intuition and sense of healthy urgency guide me to when the timing is right. Then, I sit down and it just channels through me. And, even when I do that, what I create is done with space and room to adjust as I still will modify minutes before my talk, and even during.
I love that Adam Grant talked about Martin Luther King, Jr. and the circumstances of how he came to deliver his talks. That he was wired in the same way. As he was sharing his story, I kept had a strong sense that he must also have a defined Root, as well.
I did some research (and, ran his chart) … and, sure enough, he does!
It was the genius in how his “I Have a Dream” speech was birthed. He ruminated for weeks, and then in the final moment, put his written words down and allowed himself to purely channel the message that needed to be shared in that moment. He drew on all his work and found the right threads to express in the right moment.
In addition to having a defined Root, he also had a defined Throat Center (like me) so he knows what words to express easily when the moment is aligned and the opportunity is before him. His procrastination was WHY his speech was so powerful. Had he gone with what he originally wrote down and rehearsed, his speech would not have been as memorable.
I know this to be true, as some of my best work has come in the final hour.
If your Root, however, is open, then procrastination has the definition of laziness, or feeling stuck. Meaning that you are putting off the inevitable, usually due to fear or conditioning, because you are not connected to, or motivated to creating a solution.
For someone who has their Root Center open (no Gates activated) or undefined (no Channels activated), procrastination doesn’t feel aligned. In fact, it creates even further amplified pressure to get things done. It adds stress and anxiety to those with a perceived looming project.
Procrastination can be strategic. Or, procrastination can be limiting. For some, procrastination is the pathway to creativity. For others, it is to their detriment and hinderance. Again, this emphasizes the call for why we need to understand our own innate wiring and operating plan.
Our productivity is a direct result of our alignment and creativity.
For, productivity has two tracks … one is the productivity of mediocrity. The other is the productivity of genius. When we aligned ourselves to our own genius, in both our definition and in our openness, we then create space for the depth of our own creativity to spark and shine through.
Genius cannot be contained, nor is it a discipline or practice. It is the unfolding of creativity at the right time with Divine inspiration. For each of us, that’s different. Unfortunately, we are consumed in a culture of comparison, shoulding and shaming, and to one deeply addicted to the productivity of mediocrity.
We think it’s about more, more, more … at the cost of quality and real.
We starve the creative genius only to produce more of the same.
We need to keep the door open for innovation, for creativity, and inspired, divine ideas, thought, and our own vision.
And, that starts in understanding our own design and leading from there.