|One of my favourite Studio3ten pieces - see a whole blog post on Suzanne's gorgeous artwork here!|
At the beginning of this month I wrote a post called Getting It Together and so today, as the month draws to a close, I decided a little update was in order. It's been a good month really! It's been far from easy but I do feel I've made some progress. And in doing so, I've come up with a few tips I'd like to share for busy creative folk like me to get it together and enjoy life!
2. Schedule free time and time to be creative along with all the not so fun things we schedule. If you're anything like me, your calendar is pretty crazy looking. It's more like a work of art (I'm a fan of colour-coding!) but sometimes just looking at it turns my stomach. I think it's important to remember that it doesn't matter how often change your schedule - it's your schedule after all and you can do what you want with it! Add things, delete things, postpone things... it's up to you! But I do find if I plan for an hour to read in the bath, to walk on the beach or do some drawing at your local cafe I'm more likely to do it.
3. Set time limits for activities like emails, Facebook and Twitter. And blog reading! These things are good - for me they are actually important parts of my work as well as providing valuable social benefits. However, it's easy to get so caught up that hours go by and you still haven't started on your important work for the day (or gone outside/gotten dressed/eaten anything!). As with your schedule, you can always go over your time limit if you choose to, but setting one means you control it, rather than it controlling you. And that's important!
4. Make lists. But instead of having one to do list a mile long, make two lists. Or three! The first one should only ever have two or three things on it. This is the important list and if that's all you get done for the day, then it's been a successful day! The second list is the 'good if it works out' list - things to get done if you have time and inclination. The third list (I do love a good list!) could be called the 'fun' list. Or the 'me' list. And it lists the things you want to do outside of work. Like read Plato, learn to crochet or dig a herb garden. Because these things are as important, if not more, than the work things. Too often, we make these long lists and feel bad at the end of the day because we didn't get everything done. A wise person once said we tend to over-estimate what we can achieve in a day and under-estimate what we can achieve in a year. Dream big, I say! But don't put so much pressure on yourself to perform that you always fall short.
5. Make having fun a priority. Life is short and can be tough - we live in a society of rules and stress and pressure and bureaucracy. It's exhausting and frustrating and depressing. However, we can take back control over our lives if we remember our priorities. Forget about your workload, your schedule, your debts, the state of your kitchen and have a bit of fun. Sit on the balcony and drink a beer in the middle of the afternoon! Put on your favourite power ballad and dance around the room! Curl up in your favourite chair and read something amazing! Finger paint, bike-ride, bake cookies.... do more of whatever makes you happy. Follow your dreams but don't enslave yourself to them. In the words of one of my favourite writers/thinkers Tom Hodgkinson, "Life is absurd. Be merry. Be free".
Well, there's my words of wisdom for the day being offered up to the world wide web! What do you think? Do you find yourself too busy to look after yourself properly? Would you benefit from more 'happy' in your life? I'd love to hear what tips you would add to the list!
Have a great weekend folks! And don't work too hard!