Want some tips on how to easily introduce creativity into your day? Read on, my friend, read on.
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The satisfaction you get when you complete a project is awesome. But even better, is the process of actually creating something, ANYTHING (drawing, building, painting, designing, photographing, sewing, experimenting…), with your own two hands, and it’s been shown in numerous studies that making things – visual, tangible things – is good for your brain (more to come on that in a later post).
But a lot of creative peeps actually suck at it.
Hands up who spends far too much time thinking about wanting to make something, but not enough time actually creating? Too much time on Pinterest, scrolling, scrolling, scrolling, pinning to your “To Make” board… but never producing the goods? Double tapping every second project you see on Instagram because “oh that would be fun to make”, but not finding the time to ever follow through?
So this post is a bit of a pep-talk to myself, and hopefully you can benefit from it also 😉
We need to start small.
Simply saying “yeah just set aside an hour and get all your shit out and make something” is not going to happen. We need to introduce really simple practices into the comings and goings of our day, and build this act of creating something into a habit.
So here are my Top 5 Tips for How to be Creative – every single day.
1. Have some supplies within reach, all the time
Having to pull stuff out and pack it away again afterwards is a big undertaking and a massive deterrent to getting your hands moving and making. Keep a small selection of materials close at hand to use in your daily tasks, as well as a small selection of your chosen craft stash to get you motivated to use it.
Hand in hand with this latter part is, Stop. Buying. Supplies. Especially if you have a “craft cupboard” that you pack everything away into, never to be seen again.
The supplies I keep within arms reach include:
- Coloured Pens
- A Drawing Book
- A Small Tray of Embellishments
- Scissors, Glue and Washi Tape
These allow me to get just a little bit creative with things like:
- Writing appointments and tasks in my diary
- Writing my to-do list
- Marking pages in a book (hello pretty Washi Tape tabs!)
- Making really quick and easy greeting cards for several occasions
- Decorating plain notebooks/envelopes/pretty much anything
And you wouldn’t believe how much these tiny acts of making my day a bit more visual, really make me feel good.
Definitely give it a go!
2. Get off the internet
Filling your brain with Pinterest, Blogs, Google or Instagram is all well and good, but if you never actually get away from the screen and get your hands making rather than scrolling & tapping, what’s the point??
Look for inspiration in places other than the internet.
Go to the theatre and look at the costume and set design, go for a walk and marvel at the art by mother nature, go to the beach and leave your phone at home, go anywhere and read a book!
Take a break from the perfectly styled, produced and edited photos of DIY projects online that never show the failures or get too close up and always look amazing (I’m looking at you, Pinterest), and allow yourself the freedom to just make a mess and muck something up and have it turn out awful. Just have fun doing it.
Get your hands dirty / inky/ painty / smudgy / gluey and immerse yourself in the process of creation. You will feel amazing.
3. Don’t wait for a specific time of day or “set time aside”
I was originally going to write this tip as “set aside a specific time to make something every day”, because that *sounds* like a logical way to have time to make something, right? But that totally doesn’t work for me, at all. Doing this puts a lot of pressure on you to produce something during that time, and creativity doesn’t really work like that. Also if you skip the specified time and don’t create anything that day, it can feel like you’ve failed (again, more pressure).
Instead try to incorporate “being creative” into everything you do, in small, simple ways.
Some examples might be: Using different coloured pens in your diary or planner (or on your whiteboard at work), and taking 7 seconds to add a doodle to the headings or margins – it doesn’t have to be a masterpiece, triangles are so hot right now and are fun to look at!
If you love putting on and wearing makeup and accessories, you could try something different each day, with colours or shapes or styles. Maybe set yourself a challenge to paint some new nail art every week in a different theme.
Stickers and Washi Tape are my favourite thing, because they instantly add fun to whatever you put them on, and you don’t need glue, scissors, or anything else to make them work. My favourite stickers always come from Kikki.K but you can find loads of great embellishment stickers in other stores and online! You could add them to your diary, your to-do list, a note for a friend/kid/partner/colleague, your tissue box, your car…
Food presentation can be really fun, with or without kids. It might take one extra minute to arrange your veggies into a smilie face or cut a star out of your toast in the morning, and the smiles it can bring are totally worth it, every time.
Before we switched to plunger coffee I used to make little “coffee illustrations” in my husbands morning cup, they were always really terrible but it made us both laugh and it was a fun thing to do each morning that put my brain in a good mind-set for the rest of the day.
4. Do Nothing
In the shower, before going to sleep, on a long walk… these are the times when you can leave the screen and let your mind wander (and wonder!), and your creative brain will thank you for it! I do my best thinking when I’m about to go to sleep. I just let my mind skip from idea to idea, imagining the possibilities of something, until I drift off. Sometimes I even have awesome bolts of inspiration in a dream and am lucky enough to remember it when I wake up (and it’s still awesome, not just “dream awesome”).
Just. Effing. Do. It. Get off your bum and start making. Stop talking about it. Stop pinning it. Stop bloody well blogging about it Mikaela, and DO IT. It’s amazing how great something can be once you actually start DOING it.
So what are you waiting for??
Pop your name and email in below to sign up for The Makers’ Co 30 Day Creative Challenge