One problem that seems to plague most artists is finding time for regular creativity. This includes those who have no structure or plan and are just trying to stay afloat and subsequently have little time for their art. And sometimes, unfortunately, even those who have a solid plan and lots of structure.
It goes without saying that if you’re operating with no plan, it will be hard to find consistency with anything.
While you may be the kind of creative who is more easily drawn into your art than the business side of things, I’m sure you can remember a time you were too busy shuffling between your 3 jobs that your art got benched for weeks on end.
Opposite of that, it’s certainly easy to get caught up in the business of the business and lose sight of what fuels the very work you’re doing in the first place. A bunch of our clients get so excited at the prospect of a plan and the tools we’re providing that they can get swept away in tracking their weekly financials and coming up with marketing strategies that sometimes a month goes by before they realize they’ve lost touch with their art.
You all know I’m a super fan of a plan, but how you create is wholly personal to you and may need a bit more flexibility. For example, when I’m working on something, I need time to walk around, doddle, talk, eat, sleep, repeat. It can be hard to do that when you have a complex, totally structured schedule.
So what do we do? Schedule in some unstructured time. LOL. But really.
As with managing the rest of our business (whether we want to or not), until we have the team, the time, the resources and / or the relevance to fly free, we may have to succumb to creating structure in order to work with no structure on our art.
We’ve got to gain control to lose control.
There are so many moving parts that continued structure of some kind is a must in order to not let facets of your business lag and hurt the pieces that are doing well. If there’s anything I’ve learned over the years of doing this work with so many different types of creatives, it is that everyone works at different paces and that has to be ok.
So rather than getting overwhelmed by the notion that you will have to juggle all these pieces while trying to create at the same time, let’s start by prioritizing your need for weekly creativity. Because in the end, how good the product is is ultimately the most important piece of any business. In this case, weekly creativity should be the easiest to understand and make room for.
Look at the week ahead. No matter what your setup is, if you’re feeling a lack of creativity in your day to day, carve out time for it.
Type it into your calendar, tell Siri or write it in your scheduling journal… “Sing” — “Paint” — “Read” — “Write” — “Dream” — “Create”. Make it a priority. Who knows, if it works maybe you’ll start adding in more structure?
By Joshua Morgan for Artist’s Strategy.
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