Last week I spoke about not being OK with lacking the time to be creative and how we arrive at this state of affairs through our own choices.
If it is not OK with you, what can you do?
My first suggestion is to sit down and do a time map. How do you do this?
Beginning NOW, and for the next week make a note of all the activities you do in a week and how long you spend on each one. I know – I can hear your thoughts ….. I haven’t got time to do that, what a dumb idea…. etc etc. However if you can get over your inner Mr Negative Feedback person, this will give you invaluable insight into how to make more time appear in your day. Why? Because you will get the chance to see where you squander your precious minutes, hours and days and how you might use them better.
Now Listen UP!!!
MOST IMPORTANT! Please include things like………………………….
Time spent -
Chatting with friends
Chatting on the phone or to the neighbour over the back fence
Hanging out or doing washing
Preparing meals and eating them
Going out for coffee
Running around after other people like, kids, bosses, partners and needy friends
etc. etc. etc…… you get the idea. WHY is it important or even useful to do this?
When you make time to do this little exercise you can then see, over the course of the week where most of your time goes and look at how some of those activities might be condensed or even eliminated.
Then build yourself a list of all these activities and prioritize them into 4 categories -
Things that Have To Be Done – ie. Meal preparation, work work, cleaning house/garden – weekly or daily repeatables etc
Things I’d like to do if I had time – Personal time
Things To Be Delegated
Now put this information into a mind map. – It might look like this.
This Week’s Question: How might you make time for your creativity?
Next Week’s Insights:What to do with this i information.
To really embrace this idea that we are creative we must first understand the nature of creativity. What is it? How do I know that I have it?
We tend to have very limiting beliefs around creativity, what it is and how we do it. People generally tend to think of art and it’s offshoots, to be what creativity is all about.
Think about your life. When did you really, really, really want something? How did that something arrive? It began with seeing or hearing about something and having feelings about that thing. This may or may not have had anything to do with art. From the feelings, your desire for that thing began to grow which in turn made you feel good when you thought about it….. and so it goes on until that thing turns up in your life.
Sometimes this happens in a way that you could never have planned or arranged in a million years. However the fact remains that you have created it – your thoughts and emotions created it! This is true creativity…….. and it’s what we all do every day of our lives. We can create anything we want so long as we focus on the positive aspects of that thing, have good feelings about it believe in the possibility of it……and not the absence of it or the not having of it.
So how does this relate to creativity and art, if we are all born with this ability to create anything. It means that what ever our area of interest, from cooking or wood working to facilitating, or accountancy – we can bring our own flair, our own flavour if you like to that thing. We can create new ways of doing things, making things or transferring information. This is all creativity.
This weeks Question: Can you make a list of ALL the creative things you currently do in your life?
In the last post I was speaking about people being ‘full cups’, an affliction which unfortunately often affects people in authority positions – CEO’s, small business owners, long serving employees.
Now what do they all have in common? It could be called ‘the familiarity breeds blindness syndrome’. We are living in a rapidly changing world – something many people do not really fully comprehend as yet. Old ways of doing things no longer work, business models are changing. Methods that sold widgets 20, 10 or even 5 years ago will not work well today. We have moved from the information age into the age of creativity. There are a few major business on the world stage, some of the bigger corporations that have cottoned on to this and consequently, now employ creativity experts on their staff.
What does this have to do with familiarity and blindness? People or businesses that are in a rut tend to just repeat the same old same old. Because it worked once it should still work. This approach however ignores one of the fundamental laws of the universe, which is that change is the only certainty. The advantage creativity experts have is that they are trained to think differently, they don’t see the world through the same paradigm as everyone else and they are not attached to a particular outcome. Therefore they can be open to all possibilities. They also have high pattern recognition skills, which allow them to follow paths, others cannot perceive.
The faster the world moves, the more need we have for creative thinkers, just to help the rest of us keep up.
Today’s Question: How are you managing to see around the blind spots in your own life?
A gentle way to practice becoming comfortable with change is to choose at least one thing each day and do it differently.
As I said before – we are creatures of habit. Take me for instance. Every Sunday I go for a walk along the beach – a ten minute drive from home.
I have my walk and then go to a great little café right on the beach, where I have breakfast – usually banana bread. In fact that’s where I am right now – writing my blog posts for the week. And as I sit here with my Latte and banana bread, and begin writing this post about habits I am flashing that I also always slice my bread up the same way. Hmm……..
Break The Habit
So what the………. Today I decided to cut it up differently!!! I ended up with a star on my plate instead of a bunch of rectangles. Did it feel different? Actually it did, awkward even – but that’s the whole point.
By consciously choosing to change the things we do habitually, we get to safely experience the feeling – no matter how small – of what happens internally when we choose to do something differently.
The long term value is that when it comes to a bigger thing, we have developed a higher change/pain threshold. We feel much more comfortable with change and have therefore less resistance to it. The process is no longer unfamiliar, or seems to present so many obstacles.
Ultimately we might even get to the point where it becomes a habit to ask ourselves how we might do each thing differently – what if I did this instead? How can I create a better experience?