The Urge To Do Things

Seditious Canary's Workbench

Chris Nygaard via Compfight

The best thing about the rise of Pinterest is that it help people tart, and hopefully finish, projects.


It is easy to assume in our digital age that few people do things any more. I know hardly anyone who changes the oil in their car, and that fact that I do lots of DIY projects around the house makes me an outlier. Why do it yourself when you can call someone to complete that task?


Yet much of the success of the Food Network is that people want to learn and try new things. Make Quinoa? Show me how. Even if most of the entertainment value comes from watching someone do something you find interesting, being able to do something differently the next time enriches the viewer’s life.


Sometimes starting a project is the key to finishing, because our brains will nag us until we are done. The research phase, even in a simple, high level view, can be enough to get the ball rolling. Which is why I think that Pinterest and similar sites are more than just a time-suck. The gathering of images can help focus one’s thoughts on a project- a bit of this, a technique, a color scheme, an added feature, etc.- and move forward to all the other steps in a project. An idea board can lead to sketching of plans and shopping for materials. One successful project leads to the second, and so on.


The ability to see the work of other hobbyists and amateurs leads to a self-reinforcing loop. If all of these people can complete these projects, why not me? And so it goes on.


So pin away- it might help you get something done.

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