Great tools are the ones we use over and over again. They stay well-honed from practice and continual use. We love them because they are familiar and reliable.
And then, there’s the Allen Wrench.
You know the Allen Wrench, even if you have no idea what I am talking about. The Allen Wrench is that L-shaped tool that is enclosed with every flat-pack, assemble-yourself piece of furniture you’ve received by mail or at discount stores like IKEA.
I’m guessing that you have at least one floating around your home, hidden in your junk drawer or languishing taped to the back of that same piece of furniture just in case you need it.
Because the thing about the Allen Wrench is that you don’t need it often, but when you need an Allen Wrench, you need an Allen Wrench. Nothing else will do.
Just like the Allen Wrench, we have tools that we use only very occasionally, but when we need them, those are the ones we need. These tools could be information from a specific book, a creativity exercise that reliably sparks imagination, or a particular technique that you rarely use in your craft.
What is your Allen Wrench tool? Pull it out of the “junk drawer” in your mind and dust it off. Take some time this week and practice the skill, re-read the book, do the exercise—whatever you need to do to refresh yourself on this rarely used, but oh-so-important tool.
Maybe you can use this to get you in the mood…a little jam by Marcia Ball—“The Right Tool for the Job”!