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As much as I’d like to live in the here and now, I commonly find myself reflecting intently on what lies ahead. What lies beyond what I’m doing right at this very moment? Can I make the design better? Can I make a better image or be more creative? Is there such a thing as making something too creative? Is more creative better?

These are all valid questions to which there is no correct answer. What’s “improved” in one person’s eyes is degraded in another.

What I really try to focus on is “the one thing.” That thing that is my purpose. Sometimes, becoming better means being able to reduce things down to their fundamental elements. It’s easy to create something complicated. I mean, just look at some of the packaging you see on the shelves you probably walk by every single day. Most of it us chock full of information that no one really reads and if they do, they probably don’t even understand half of it. If that’s a lesson for us to learn from, then perhaps complicated isn’t the best way to approach a design project.

Simple is better.

Simple doesn’t break down. Simple plans have less of a chance of going astray. Simple is understandable. And isn’t that what we’re really after?

Understanding? Making sense of it all?

Whether you’re talking about design or some aspect of our life, making sense of it all seems like a necessary thing. Otherwise, we’re just taking one step after another with no real purpose right? How are we to contribute if we don’t understand our purpose? How are we to leave places and things better than we found them if we don’t understand our purpose, or the purpose of everything that surrounds us.

That makes a lot of sense to me.

What lies beyond? Beyond right now? Beyond the last decision you made?

The future, of course.

Staying true to your purpose aligns your purpose with your environment and surroundings. Knowing your purpose is crucial to your future and your enjoyment of every single day you spend on this earth. Knowing your purpose makes the difference in enjoying true fulfillment in life rather than just taking one meaningless step after another. Only after you simplify to the point where there is singularity of purpose in your life will you begin to accomplish what you were really meant to do.

How does this apply to creatives? You need to understand your purpose before taking on new projects. You need to understand the purpose of the product before you can do the product justice. You can’t add value to something you don’t understand. To find that purpose, try reducing the project or project to its fundamental elements and make those elements shine through in the final message.

That’s the message that will be the most effective.

That’s the message that is authentic.

Living an authentic life and improving your creativity is where it all starts. Your purpose makes that possible.

And that, my friends, is some food for thought…