"Limitations allow you to choose from something rather than everything." - Corita Kent and Jan Steward, Learning by Heart
Visiting a magic dealer can be overwhelming because there are so many choices on display. I have noticed that if there is a dealer table with lots of possible choices at a convention, most people quickly run their eyes across the display and then move on without purchasing anything. This is especially true if the dealer room is open lots of hours so they aren't forced to make a decision now. Sometimes they plan to come back later to make their decision and never return. If there are a handful of choices on a table at a magic lecture available for a very limited time, people quickly decide what they want and purchase it right away.
Having too many choices can make it difficult to make any choice. The lament of kids on summer vacation that there is "nothing to do" actually means the opposite. There is so much they can potentially do that they can't decide. No decision is more appealing than another so they are stuck being indecisive and don't do anything.
Sometimes limitations are forced upon us. For example, when I recently broke my right ankle I was forced to stay home most of the time because I can't drive with that ankle in a cast. That meant my choices of things to do where limited by what I can do at home. So I decided to reorganize my clown history archives. I have been entering a lot of information into my computer which will allow me to quickly search for information. A friend asked me if I was going to scan all the information. I could have done that, but I decided to limit myself to retyping the material. In the process I have started recognizing some names and making connections that I had never thought about before. It has been an opportunity to learn a lot more about clown history. I probably would not have made the choice to follow through and complete this project now if my physical limitations had not narrowed the number of possible choices.
When I worked at the Raging Waters amusement park I spent part of the day doing atmosphere shows. Those were shows that were done at various places around the park where I could gather a crowd. Between seasons I would search for new routines to add to my shows. I made a large trunk on wheels that I pulled with me which meant I was limited to the props that would fit into the trunk. I would be performing with people standing in a circle around me so I could not use props that would reveal the secret when viewed from a certain angle. I also had to use props that could be seen and understood from the back. When I was entertaining people waiting in line for an attraction I usually had a new audience by the time I finished one show so I immediately began a new show. That meant I couldn't pause to reset props. When I finished a routine the props had to be back in starting position. Those limitations let me quickly narrow the possible selections at a magic dealer table from over fifty to perhaps just five. Then I was able to make a choice from those. During those years I actually used more of what I purchased than I do now that my performances don't have as many limitations.
You can impose your own limitations. The writers of the Jack Benny radio show created a character they called the Little Mexican, played by Mel Blanc, who was limited to speaking one syllable at a time. The result was a highly successful series of routines. You might decide that you want to do an entire routine without speaking. If you rely heavily on props, you might limit yourself to a spoken routine without props. You might want to do a show limited to solo routines. You might want to do a show limited entirely to tricks using silk scarves or go the opposite way and do a show without any silk scarves. You might do a juggling act limited to manipulating balls or do an act where you limit your props to things that can be found around the house. It is up to you. The secret is to set a limit which narrows down the possible choices. Then select the best from those available choices and see how they inspire your creativity.
What limits are imposed upon you? How do those guide your choices? What temporary limits can you set yourself? How do those guide your choices?