Creative Work is Never Done

“One thing about creative work is that it’s never done.  In different words, every person we interviewed said that it was equally true that they had worked every minute of their careers, and that they had never worked a day in all their lives.  They experienced even the most focused immersion in extremely difficult task as a lark, an exhilarating and playful adventure.

It is easy to resent this attitude and see the inner freedom of the creative person as an elite privilege.  While the rest of us are struggling at boring jobs, they have the luxury of doing what they love to do, not knowing whether it is work or play.  There might be an element of truth in this.  But far more important, in my opinion, is the message that the creative person is sending us:  You, too, can spend your life doing what you love to do.  After all, most of the people we interviewed were not born with a silver spoon in their mouth; many came from humble origins and struggled to create a career that allowed them to keep exploring their interests.  Even if we don’t have the good fortune to discover a new chemical element or write a great story, the love of the creative process for its own sake is available to all.  It is difficult to imagine a richer life.”

– Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi


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