Let’s face it; nobody has time. There are social engagements, overload of work at your day job or heck, if you live in Beirut, you can spend 2 hours in traffic from one neighborhood to the next.
But the truth is, not having time is just another excuse to procrastinate you creative life.
If you really want to do something, you will MAKE time.
Here are a few ways that have always worked for me:
1. SET MANAGEABLE GOALS – but keep the big dream alive!
Don’t plan on working on your dream project for 5 hours. Who has 5 hours to spare? Instead, plan 5 minutes per day. 5 minutes can make a real difference, and I’m sure you have 5 minutes because I’m sure you spend more than 5 minutes per day on social media. Feeling blocked? That’s ok, write anything and everything down, as long as it’s 5 minutes.
2. TURN OFF THE INTERNET
Internet is the devil of creativity, tempting you always to procrastinate… is that an article on how kale can make you a better lover?… damnit, sorry, I was briefly distracted. When you are creatively working for 5 minutes – turn off the Internet on your computer and your phone (gasp!). It’s 5 minutes, you can do it.
3. PLAN ONE “CREATIVE” DAY – like a date with yourself.
Plan a 3-hour chunk on your day off. Once per week, or once every other week. Take your laptop out of your house, sit down, open a document and start the clock. Not inspired? Who cares, sit down and write anyway. Refer to all the stuff you’ve done in your 5-minute exercises and start on one of those.
4. DO NOT POSTPONE
The rule of your 3-hour creative day is that you can reschedule for any time BEFORE the time you have set. You cannot POSTPONE. Your friends ask you out to lunch? Pull back the creative time you had planned and go with them AFTER your 3-hours. Something exciting came up? Wake up earlier and get your creative workout finished.
5. REWARD YOURSELF
You cannot write for 3 hours straight. You can’t be actively creative for that long. Set goals within that amount of time. For example, decide you will work for 15 minutes straight. When that 15 minutes is done, reward yourself with:
– Food! Order something to eat
– Internet: your internet connection should be off (See #2). As a reward, turn on the Internet for 10 minutes. You deserve it.
– If you smoke… you know the rest (disclaimer: smoking is bad)
– If you’re addicted to coffee … well, you know the rest
6. MAKE MISTAKES
We have this need to be right all the time. It’s conditioned in us from institutionalized education. “I don’t think it’s right” is another way of saying “I’m afraid this is going to suck.” Fear is the true enemy of inspiration. The trick is, don’t put so much pressure on yourself. Get something down on paper – ANYTHING – and then think about it later. Don’t be right, be doing something. Make mistakes, be cliché, or whatever else you tell yourself. There will be time after to rewrite. Now, stop judging yourself and get to work.
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