It is hubris, not humility, that we are most often surrounded by these days; one need only turn on any news channel or social media outlet for a destructive shot of it. I say destructive because that sort of excessive pride only serves to hurt ourselves and others; it stunts development, and-and civil discourse. In mythology, hubris wasn’t so much tolerated as much as it was punished; if one were to show pride before a God there were consequences, and the stories of Oedipus, Achilles, and Prometheus are evidence of that. Today, though, things aren’t necessarily so outwardly severe, though in the photographic community it can really be detrimental.
One of the ways we, in our circle, tend to exude hubris is when it comes to taking advice about our work or performance from those who aren’t themselves in our field. Yes, photography is a ‘speciality’ of sorts, but we don’t live in a vacuum, and we have lots to learn from others. I lead into this post in such fashion because I believe that there are things we can implement in our lives that will make us better photographers, or, at least, more effective creatives and business people. We just need to be open to it.
One of the things on that list has got to be physical fitness. I am certainly not about to get preachy here as I’m not exactly doing Ironmans on my off days, but, I’ve noticed the tendency for my physical ability to take a significant dive when work is busy. We spend our days crouching behind a camera, and then sitting behind a computer, and that’s just not a recipe for health nor virility. Not only that, when I’m more physically capable, I’m more capable of doing my work, doing it better, and more efficiently. I have more energy to think, and to see those creative concepts through to materialization.
Richard Branson, when once asked what one piece of advice he would offer to be more productive, took a moment to take in the crowd surrounding him hanging on every word he said, his reply was simply, “Work out.” He went on to sing the virtues of it and the benefits such as more energy and, therefore, more working time and so forth. While I won’t sit here and convince you to become a Crossfitter, I certainly do advocate doing even a few things to help keep your body in a manner fit for life, and believe to the core it will help you as a creative. In that vein, we have the video below.
Here, Chase Jarvis spends a few quality minutes with Kelly Starrett who gives some easy to implement advice on how to keep the body best while living the creative (desk) life; from sitting techniques to prevent and alleviate pain, to why you should sit on your sit bones, hydration, and so on. It’s not a workout routine, and I believe deep down most of us know we could do better at these things and know it will improve the quality of life. I just hope that most of us have the humility to watch this, listen, and take even a little bit to heart.