How to find the time to write or be creative
How to find the time to write or be creative is the thing people tell me often that they struggle with. I get it, either it feels indulgent and there are too many other things to do, or, (hard truth time) sometimes it’s that we simply don’t want to be creative. That is ok, for a while, but eventually, we may feel we need to express our selves creatively because it is the way we work out problems or find our freedom.
We get sucked into the latest series on Netflix or scroll through Instagram easily. But the benefits of finding the time to be creative are scientifically proven. It is true that we can find slithers of time throughout our day to fit in some creative time, but for larger creative endeavours or projects we don’t ‘find’ the time like lost keys, we ‘make’ the time. We schedule it, we prioritise it and we reward ourselves for being creative.
Creativity on demand is not always easy, it ebbs and flows. With any creative passion project if we want to get to a certain point then we have to make the time and give ourselves deadlines. With iola magazine I have to schedule in my own time to be creative or it won’t get done and I have writers and readers to serve. I have the drive to do so because I love it and I feel alive when I get to express myself creatively. That’s not to say that there aren’t times when it feels like hard work but anything worth doing will have times of resistance. That is when rewarding yourself for the effort is essential.
Creativity as a lifestyle
I have also made creativity part of my daily lifestyle, I make time for noticing things and being more mindful of the moments. I write down notes and thoughts or turns of phrases, if I see some design I love or colour combinations I note them or photograph them or pin them. This, in turn, inspires creativity in other areas.
Planning for creativity
However much I love working on iola magazine I know that I need to schedule the plan for it. I have different ways of planning my time and although I like a loose-ish schedule and like to go with what I feel like doing within that time period, I still have deadlines to meet. For example the deadline for submissions for the next issue is coming up. Then there will be a period of time where I consider the articles, work out an order for them, then I’ll need to allow so many hours for layout and design, picture research, then marketing creation and general admin. All so that the issue is ready to buy when I have told people it will be ready. I use this Moleskin diary notebook (affiliate link) for my week to week work plan, it has a week to view on one page and notes on the other. For my overall month plan I like to have a month to view for the whole year with all the deadlines marked in. For the iola schedule I use a paper copy of a month to view. I find that writing things down as opposed to typing them helps me to remember them better.
I made a pretty monthly planner to use and I’ll send you your own printable version if you click here
What to do when you feel stuck creatively
Creativity to order is hard, sometimes we just get stuck, however much time we have allowed ourselves. It’s a slippery thing, the creative vibe and it seems counterintuitive to do the things that are needed to spark inspiration again. But here’s my best advice, take a break, a rest, go somewhere that makes your soul breathe. Release yourself from the pressure to produce. Then when the creative idea sparks, run with it for a while, even if it feels like a bad idea to start with. You’ll find your way again!