It’s easy to blow off creative time. The kids need stuff, there are errands to run, work to do, fires to put out. I get it – believe me I do because crafting IS MY JOB and yet it still happens to me and is a daily battle. If you give me a day where I don’t have to leave the house for ANY reason and everyone is healthy I can create at least 12 but I believe 23 is my record # of craft projects in a single day over about 16 hours. Obviously, that is an ideal situation for creativity because you get me rolling and watch out!!
There is just one catch. Food wasn’t prepared. The house isn’t cleaned. Kids are 100% ignored. I’ve not even made time to shower. So while that’s obviously my “optimal” situation for creating it’s the WORST for every and anything else. Those kinds of days tend to happen 2-3 days per year at most under extreme deadline/mandatory creating pressure situations.
We all have 24 hours each day- no more no less – and we each have free will and decide how we use (or don’t use) those hours. But it can be hard to “switch gears” – I know! Here are things I’ve been doing that help me.
- Have 1 project out “on the table” so when I walk by or have a few minutes (as few as 5) I can work a bit. Pocket pages, scrapbook layouts, coloring stamps… there are a lot of things I can do with a few minutes if I have thought out and have something there waiting.
- Put it on the schedule! Even if just two hours one evening adding “craft time” and blocking it out for yourself.
- Creativity is a muscle. Just like exercise of any kind – doing something creative each day (or most days) helps keeps ideas flowing and when you DO find those blocks of time, helps you be ready to jump right in instead of staring at paper and going “ummmm…”
- Get a little critical. Look at how you spend your time and if/when/what you choose to do vs be creative and if there are things you could maybe do without. I gave up my beloved candy crush
- Let go of what you think it ought to look like. This has been a big one for me – I used to think “creativity time is sitting down and making a project” and the thing is – that was hurting me. I couldn’t always do that or I might have time for a bit of play in my art journal or stamping a new stamp or part of a scrapbook page… and that wasn’t ok with me. Why not? I finally asked myself. It is ALL GOOD, and doing small pieces and parts is always better than nothing at all!
There isn’t one way to go about things, and it’s cool to get in a habit such as creatively wrapping gifts for Christmas for weeks or making Valentines all during January… phases are so very common in creating and that’s ok too! Currently I have a 6×8 album out and ready should I be inspired to add stories and photos and stickers. I am also ignoring the massive Disney project from last year I want to take on. That’s ok too.
We can’t “do it all” all of the time.
One thing I commonly say in my classes is to pick ONE thing you want to do, and work on that first. Unless you are working on projects that require extensive dry time or waiting between layers of work it usually does work better to throw yourself into a project. Not feeling it? Hating it? Find something else.
Now it’s your turn: I’d love to hear what you do to make time for creativity, how you carve out little or big chunks, or how you hope to add more creative time to your daily life. There are so many ways to do it – and I can tell you my summer strategy is wildly different than winter and is very different than even 3 years ago. Change is good!