I’m feeling my way around. The path branches out in several directions. I explore one avenue hunting for clues that may have the insight I need, and then I try another route. This is not a distracted wandering but a focused drive seeking creative possibilities. In my search I encounter more questions. Channeling my inner detective, I analyze methodologies and interview subject matter experts. I turn concepts inside out and backwards. Maybe if I think about them from a different angle, I will see details that I did not notice before? There are moments of exhilaration, exasperation, and fascination. The answers will not come to me on a silver platter. I have to be patient with what develops while keeping the end goal in mind. Thus the creative process of a project unfolds.
While working in the cyberlab I have been reflecting on the process of a project. Our team has a goal in mind – to create a customizable research platform that will provide a setting for researchers to investigate free-choice learning, human and computer interaction, or sociology principles (to name a few). We have many tools and resources to use, but more pieces are needed to reach our destination. Seeking out advisors for assistance, their insight inspires more questions and new routes. My personal comfort zone prefers this to be orderly and structured, but this confining mindset is breaking down, forcing me to question my grip on a pre-determined map. Instead of traveling on a firm road, I am moving along a fluid river. The comfort zone begins to stretch.
I am reminded of the idea to embrace the journey, whether it is related to a project for the cyberlab, graduate school, or life in general! There is beauty in the iteration, the failed attempts, and the pieces that finally connect together. The creative process requires patience and time. Keep driving to design, refine, and reflect. Great inventions and innovations require passion, persistence, and alterations. All of this builds to learning and growth. With this in mind, I am off to navigate the wild river.