Well friends, you may have noticed the holidays sneaking up on us, which means we have entered the busiest season of the year for most people! The parties, the shopping, the hosting, the family and food. As well as the making, the marketing, the shipping. It’s all wonderful and amazing and also… a little overwhelming. Because of that it’s no wonder you are curious how to keep the creativity flowing amidst everything else that just, must, get, done!
Here are my two simple thoughts on the topic:
For creativity in general: Let it into everything you do.
It’s important to remember that your creativity is not separate from your life. Every piece of your busy to do list can be infused with creativity. Let it fit in. Why not do handmade gifts this year? Or simply put your own spin on the wrapping paper or card. If you are hosting, there are a million ways to get creative - from the decor to the food to the music you play. If you are a guest find a creative way to thank your host - be it a little gift or a unique dish for the potluck. You get the idea right? Look at everything on your list that you have to do and find a way to add a little creative joy to it. It may seem like it will make the task take longer and you just want to check it off the “easy” way, but the more you can get into the spirit of it, the more that same inspiration will spread out into the rest of your life. Then, beyond your have to list, think of all the other fun ways you can get creative this season. You can decorate your house. You can make your Grandma’s peanut brittle recipe for the first time. You can stitch a quilt while you watch classic Christmas movies. You can teach your kid to make cookies and decorate them together. The holidays are bursting with opportunities to make, share and embellish! Enjoy it!
Quick note here: There is a very important distinction between a desire and a should. When you think about doing something from your task list, the idea is to add creativity so that it makes you feel excited and tingly and joyful to complete - that creates desire. If instead you feel heavy or guilty when you think about doing the task, you are telling yourself you should do it that way. Do not under any circumstance add things to your to do list because you feel like you “should”. The name of the game this season: JOY. And joy comes from living in our desires. Not our shoulds.
Now that said there will still always be things that must get done in our businesses this time of year, so for that...
For creative tasks that must get done: Schedule it.
Just because there are 100 things to do in our personal lives this time of year, doesn’t mean our creative careers slow down. In fact for many of us - hello makers! - we may be in our busy season getting gifts out the door! So, the simplest way to stay sane and still get it all done? Schedule it. Need to finish the design project? Schedule it. Need to get the orders out the door? Schedule it. Estimate how long it will take to do each task and actually assign that task to a time slot in your day. I personally schedule all my Must-Get-Done-Today creative tasks first thing in the morning. That way once those are complete I can be more relaxed and flexible in the rest of my day - which I know keeps me more inspired. On that note, I also recommend - especially this time of year - to schedule in time for spaciousness because that’s where the ideas and inspiration that will keep you fired up come from. So yes, put a nap or a walk on your calendar. Likely right after tackling your biggest career to do and right before doodling your own custom wrapping paper while watching Love Actually for the 1000th time.
To a beautifully full and creative season, Cheers, xx, Cort