New Year, New You, right?
Maybe not so much, or at least much easier said than done.
As a creative, you may have dreamed up some pretty wild and whimsical resolutions for the year ahead. But are they attainable?
Statistics show that most resolutions don’t make it past the end of January. But maybe that’s because they’re lofty, unrealistic, nebulous, and aren’t what we truly want to, or are capable of changing, within ourselves and our life.
Let’s be realistic: live a stress-free life, or dabble in a new art form. Which one are you actually able to stick with?!
If you choose resolutions or intentions that really matter to you, and create a realistic and daily plan to put them into effect, a new version of yourself will slowly emerge.
“New Year’s Resolution” conundrum
Indian speaker and philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti rather precisely described the typical human “New Year’s Resolution” conundrum when he quipped,
I wonder what we mean by a new year. New. Is it a fresh year, a year that is totally afresh, something that has never happened before? When we say something new, though we know there is nothing new under the sun, when we talk about a new and a happy year, is it really a new year for us? Or is it the same old pattern repeated over and over and over again? Same old rituals, same old traditions, same old habits, a continuity of what we have been doing, still are doing, and will do the same thing this year.
What are your goals or intentions, as a creative, for this year?
Maybe you have some ideas knocking around, but haven’t solidified them yet?
10 Creative Intentions for the New Year
Here are some fun ideas that we came up with for the year ahead, that are approachable, fun, and might help your life as a creative be even more fulfilling and awe-inspiring:
Start a 100 day project.
This is such a fun way to apply yourself to learning a new skill or expanding upon one that you've had a hard time making space for.
Make that List
Write down a list of 20 techniques/mediums/styles you want to try creating with. Choose 4 of them that you’re going to try this year and, here’s the clincher: Put them on your calendar! When you write them down and schedule them, you are more likely to hold yourself accountable to them. And with 4 scheduled for the year, that gives you 3 months to explore each of these new realms of creating
Find the Joy
Identify some part of your creative work that doesn’t bring you joy. Maybe it’s cleaning up your workspace, pricing your work, taking photos....
Whatever it is, find some way that you can reframe this task to make it enjoyable. Come up with incentives to help you get through it, or a special tool that you only get to use for this task.
It’s important to remember that joy is where we find it. If you are in business for yourself as a creative, you are one lucky duck! Remember that joy and work towards finding it in everything you do.
Capture that feeling!
You know the magical feeling you get when you are in your creative flow state?
Over the course of the next few weeks and months, try to capture this feeling when it happens. Write it down, memorize it, analyze it, paint it, create a visual depiction of it. Imprint it on your soul so that when you are stuck in a creative rut, you can summon that feeling and use it to pull yourself back to inspiration.
Vision Board It
Create a vision board of styles or creative techniques that inspire you, and hang it in your studio or creative space. These don’t necessarily have to be things that you want to learn how to do, but they should uplift you. Look at this vision board daily; we take inspiration from things that we love, and ideas come about in unexpected ways.
Make room for creative downtime. According to an article from the Harvard Business Review, Jonah Lehrer, in his book Imagine, “notes the necessity of downtime for problem solving, saying, ‘While it’s commonly assumed that the best way to solve a difficult problem is to relentlessly focus, this clenched state of mind comes with a hidden cost: it inhibits the sort of creative connections that lead to breakthroughs.’"
Go take a walk.
Read a book.
Try out a new restaurant or cafe.
Take a yoga class.
Go to the gym.
Try a new recipe.
Do a puzzle.
Create time for ideas on the back burner to percolate!
Shake things up a bit!
Get out of a rut and set a resolution or intention that breaks the mold from the standard ideas.Try some of these ideas from TED:
Re-examine that competition
Have a competitor who normally fuels your anger, frustration, or feelings of self-doubt? Study the heck out of what they’re doing, what makes them successful, and why they are your competitor. What can you learn from them? Take that envious energy and put it to good use. You’ll soon see that your competitor’s success can fuel your own success, and maybe you’ll see that they’re not your competitor after-all!
Create Every Day
Make a vow to create Every. Single. Day. Even if it’s just for 10 minutes. Nourish your creative spirit so that creating becomes a part of the pattern of your everyday life.
Find your People
Join or start a creative community. Many creatives spend a lot of time alone. And while this can be productive and perfectly functional, it’s also helpful and exciting to have a community that can understand the ups and downs of a creative entrepreneur's lifestyle. Your best friend might not understand your sheer excitement when you find that bead supplier you’ve been searching for since last gem show, but another creative will absolutely empathize!
Remember Why You Create
If your creative outlet is also your job, make sure you take time to create just for the joy of it! Find a Passion Project that fulfills your sense of wonder and awe, and dedicate time to this project on a weekly basis. Mark off time on your calendar for this project because it's as important as the other tasks on your To-Do list!
Bracelet stack by JOY'd, WomanShopsWorld customer
Have an idea to add to our list? Comment below, and let's make 2020 the most exciting, creative, amazing year!