How Growing A Beard Helps You Be More Focused And More Creative

Dan with beard. Nearly.

There are I’m sure many superstitions and Old Wives Tales about how to be more creative, as there are around any activity. But you probably haven’t heard about this one, until now.

Growing a beard will help you become more focused and more creative.

How on earth does this work, you might be wondering? And does it work for women as well as men?

Let me explain the background story:

When I was quite a bit younger, I used to shave every morning when I got up. This was usually around mid morning as I worked afternoon to evening shifts in my day job then.

Then, if I was doing an evening shift that began around 5 or 6pm, I would shave again just before I left for work.

Now, let me make it clear that I hate shaving.

It’s one of the biggest inconveniences and wastes of time there is. I’m sure many men, and women, will agree. It takes maybe ten minutes, but I still begrudge that as time I could be spend writing or practicing yoga.

If I hate it so much then, why did I shave every single day and sometimes twice a day?

Because I was concerned about what others would think if I didn’t.

I didn’t want people to think I was a slob, or lazy, or scruffy, or any other stereotypical association that might be made with a man whose face is stubbled and rough as sandpaper.

These days I shave less often. Maybe every other day, sometimes only twice a week, sometimes once a week. No-one’s ever said to me: “You look a complete slob, why haven’t you shaved?” and I wouldn’t care if they did. It’s just not important to me.

(In fact the only person who has commented is my partner who prefers it when I’m a little more rugged looking…)

A few years back I must’ve spent 90 minutes a week at least shaving!

Ten minutes a time, seven days a week, plus a few more when I worked extra.

Now, I spend as little as ten minutes a week on it.

Which means I have ALL that other time to be creating, to be using it on something that is SO much more important than having my face permanently as smooth as a baby’s bottom.

Growing a beard (or at least the beginnings of one) has allowed me to be more focused on what’s really important, and spend more time creating what matters.

For you, shaving might not be such an irritation and a time waster, but I’m sure there are other small tasks you have in your life that aren’t really anywhere near as important as you think they are. Little chunks of time you spend on activities you can let go of, and instead use that time to be more creative.

For the next few days, keep a brief diary of how you spend every hour of the day.

Be as precise and objective as possible. At the end of a few days, take a good look at what you can drop, or at least do less often, and instead use that time on creative pursuits. There’ll be little pockets of time here and there that add up to maybe hours each week.

You don’t HAVE to grow a beard (especially if you’re female) but I’m positive there are other things you can leave behind to give you more time, and help you get focused and create what matters.


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8 thoughts on “How Growing A Beard Helps You Be More Focused And More Creative”

  1. I see the connection now! LOL

    On the other hand, sometimes those little tasks are good times for meditation, contemplation and percolating ideas.

    It’s all about making conscious choices with your time. Great reminder.


  2. That’s a great way to sum it up Sue – making conscious choices with your time.

    Definitely true that other times simple tasks done mindfully can help us remember that unless we live in the moment, we can never truly enjoy or appreciate anything we do, creative or otherwise.

    Thanks for your thoughts.


  3. I recently grew the largest beard of my life (over a month of growth). It somehow coincided with some of the highest productivity and creativity that I ever experienced. I’m going to go ahead and call this case closed. Beards = creativity.



  4. I’ve always thought shaving was a horrible waste of time, and have rued the day my mother handed me a razor and showed me how to use it. I’m with you, Dan, it’s a huge inconvenience!

    As I’ve aged, I care much less about hair, even on my head. In the Spring, when it’s time to pull out the short pants, I announce to my family, “Time for me to mow the lawn!” (Which means, time to shave my legs! Long pants and knee-high socks are my friends in cold weather!)


  5. You see Mary, I said this article was not just for men! Arguably girls are encouraged/ expected to spend even more time shaving, and other types of “beautifying”, in the US and UK at least.

    On the continent, France for example, they’re far more casual and carefree about it, as my European neighbours are about many things, like taking 2 or 3 hour lunches every day, and having naps in the afternoon.

    I need to move ahead those plans to live in Paris… πŸ™‚


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