You might hear the term “Creative Living” and think, what’s that? Or perhaps you’re wondering how someone can live creatively? Is there a difference between living creatively and living? Yes! There is. And the difference is this: creative living is purposeful living. It is living with intention. It is being mindful of your time, your space, and yourself. To live creatively means to engage with creativity every day. Yes, that’s right, I said every day. It is totally possible for you to be creative every day of your life, and I’m going to show you how.
WHAT DOES CREATING EVERY DAY LOOK LIKE?
First, let’s quickly take a look at what creating every day DOESN’T look like: To create every day doesn’t mean you need to spend three hours painting or writing or completing blog posts daily. You do not need to have a profession in the arts in order to be creative. You do not need to attend art school or take a creative writing class at your local college.
A trap a lot of us fall into (and trust me, I’ve fallen into this trap plenty of times myself) is we believe in order to live creatively, we have to have these huge ah-ha moment all day long. We need that bolt of lighting to just hit us and become the next Picasso or Hemingway. OR we believe people who live creative lifes are living in Paris, drinking coffee and painting or writing all day long.
Nope. Nah. Not even close.
Want to know what creative living really is? Engaging with creativity on a daily basis means making small pockets of time throughout the day during which you can be creative. It means taking your everyday activities and making them special, making them creative with small twists. Making time to create every day means...
Journaling for ten minutes every morning before you hop in the shower.
Drawing or doodling at night as you wind down from the day.
Taking your phone with you when you go for an afternoon walk and snapping pictures of everything and anything that catches your eye.
Driving a different way to work every day for an entire week and experiencing the newness, the unfamiliar roads, and the unexpected buildings you may pass.
Reading a book in a genre you’ve never read before.
Spending your lunch hour to learn a new language.
Taking yourself on artist dates, such as finding a new coffee shop or hunting for art in your hometown.
Trying out a new DIY decor for the season.
You see, it’s the little creative moments that build up over time that enrich our lives with creativity and purpose.
ESTABLISHING CREATIVE ROUTINES
One of the easiest ways to create on a daily basis is to make creating part of your routine. Do you ever catch yourself saying something like, “I need to find the time to…” or “I’ll do that when I find the time”? The problem with using the term “find” instead of “make,” is that we never really do find that time to create. Or we only find time to create every once in awhile or maybe only on Saturday nights. If we, if you, really want to create every single day then you have to make the time. But don’t worry, I’m going to show you just how easy this is.
You see, at the end of 2014, I was feeling frustrated about my lack of piano skills. I had taken lessons off and on since I was eight years old, but I never made playing the piano a regular practice. So as I sat down to think of my goals for 2015, I decided that once and for all, I was going to play the piano every day, and I was going to improve.
And guess what? I did just that. For an entire year, I played the piano every day plus I leaned thirteen news songs (something I had never managed to do before). How did I make this happen? With a routine. Just one routine. A very simple routine too. And if you want to make the time to create every day, then you also need to establish a creative routine.
I’ve gone into great lengths about establishing a creative routine in this post here, so I won’t reiterate all the nitty gritty details, but simply put, routines helps you creative every day because you are establishing HABITS. Habits that you repeat one after the other so you no longer have to remember to create, it comes to you as naturally as brushing your teeth or eating breakfast in the morning.
Here’s an example of the routine I used last year:
walk dog + yoga + piano 10 min + shower
Yeah, you read that right: I only played piano for ten minutes a day and still managed to engage in creativity each morning and increase my piano skills.
Think on it: What routines do you already do each day? What are some habits you already have in place. Before I added piano to my routine last year, every morning I would walk the dog, do yoga, and then shower. Those three habits were already in place. Because I threw “play piano for ten minutes” into the middle of yoga and shower, it was much easier for me to not only remember to practice every day, but to follow through with playing every day.
BUILD A CREATIVE SUPPORT TEAM
If you are serious about embracing creativity every single day, then you need a support team. It doesn’t have to be a huge support team. Heck, it may just be you and one friend, but just like a buddy can help us stick to a diet or workout plan, a creative support team is there to help you stay in tune with your creativity and hold you accountable on creating regularly.
Where can you find a creative support team?
Bring it home first. Is there anyone you live with (family for instance) that can become part of your creative support team? Do you have any friends you see regularly who are also creative and could use support themselves?
If not, take it online. I have been amazed at the number of friends I’ve made through Twitter Chats and Facebook Groups. What’s nice about internet groups is a group of creatives like you are coming together to discuss their creative processes, their concerns, their hopes, their goals, etc. Through participating in Twitter Chats and Facebook Groups, you can find other creatives to connect with and from there, build your support team.
Kayla Hollatz hosts the Twitter Chat #createlounge Wednesdays at 8pm EST and is the master of building online communities. If you’re new to Twitter Chats, I recommend checking out these posts from her:
Meanwhile, Melyssa Griffin runs a Facebook Group called Blog + Biz BFFs and focuses on helping those in her group make connections with each other and collaborate with one another. Read her post on the top 9 Facebook Groups for creative entrepreneurs for more Facebook Group suggestions.
How do you build your support team?
Focus first on getting to know people online. Don’t rush in and invite someone who’s never heard of you to join your support team. First, follow them on social media and engage with them. As you get to know each other better, reach out and let them know you’re looking for some accountability partners and wondered if they’d like to be part of your support team (or mastermind group, as some prefer to call it).
Once you have your group together, create a goal for how often you will “meet.” Stick to that goal. I recommend meeting at the least once a month to discuss creative pursuits/goals that you’ve achieved, you are currently working on, and you hope to start soon.
I want you to make a goal today, right now as you finish this post: Start living a creative life. Push aside the myths you’ve been told (and probably believed) about creative living and start engaging in creativity every single day. Set up your creative routine now. Schedule in creative goals each day for the next week. Start looking for your creative support team and make real connections with other creatives who fall into your niche. I guarantee if you put in the time, before you know it, creativing every day is going to feel as natural as living.
About the Author
Emily here. I’m a writer and blogger who creates content for creatives (bloggers, writers, artists, crafters, and awesome people). My belief is you are creative and you shouldn’t have to struggle to live your artistic dreams, so I create products that help you reveal your true creative awesomeness. I want you to wake up each day excited to create. I’m here to show you how to do just that so you can finally say goodbye to fear, resistance, and perfectionism for good.
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