Choose Analog



Updated November 3, 2022

You’re reading an excerpt of Creative Doing, by Herbert Lui. 75 practical techniques to unlock creative potential in your work, hobby, or next career. Purchase now for instant, lifetime access to the book.

Before he became the Grammy-winning DJ Dahi, Dacoury Natche used to play, practice, and experiment with instruments. It was how he became a musician. As he gained success in his industry, more and more of his work was done on a computer. “So much of what I was doing just felt rigid because I’m stuck within a screen,” said Natche. As a response, he remembered what he temporarily forgot—that he used to make music outside of his screen, with instruments.

Using only analog equipment—nothing connected to the internet—practice your craft. Make something. Going back to basics can be a great way to revisit why you chose this work in the first place, as Natche describes. It’s a chance for us to let go of the constraints and systems we need in order to work with technology, and to remember the simplest elements of the craft.

Complete Your Operation in Seconds

Social scientist B.J. Fogg’s Behavioral Model tells us that the more ability a task requires, the more motivation it will also require. That idea can certainly apply to creative work, which is why these prompts require minimal ability and time. This insight is key to creating habits and tapping into your discipline.

Vin Verma, who goes by the name Internetvin, has made music and written code every day for a year. One of his techniques is to find a way to create music or code in 20 seconds (writing just a single line of code on the days he didn’t have time or felt tired).

If you’re making music, your tactic could be to record a 10-second voice note of a new melody, or to write one bad line of a song lyric.

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