“The concept of creativeness and the concept of the healthy, self-actualizing fully human person, seem to be coming closer and closer together, and may turn out to be the same thing.” ~ Abraham Maslow
At the beginning of this year I threw out an idea to you – to become part of my Creative Challenge Project for 2013. (If you haven’t had a chance to read that post you can catch up on it here.)
I promised that as well as asking you to publicly name your project, I would be posting check ins to keep you on track. So here we are at the beginning of February and it’s time for our first Challenge Activity and for you to update us on where you are at.
The interesting thing about creativity is that once you really commit to it, unexpected creative project magic and other strange but pleasing synchronicities will begin showing up in your life.
Creative people are multi-faceted, and it is healthy for them to express that creativity in many different ways. This month’s challenge activity will help you explore that!
Creative Challenge Activity for February
Creativity is a place for exploration, dreams and adventures. Some of what you do will work, and some of it won’t. What works is art, what doesn’t is experience. And to be a creative ‘artist’, no matter what your field, you need both.
So here are some simple challenges to keep that creative fire burning through February. You may want to record them in your journal, and explore them in more detail. Give yourself permission to feed your hungry inner artist!
1. Commit to some creative time. Don’t see it as needing to be productive, instead thing of it as play time. Take out your diary, calendar or day planner and find yourself one hour a week every week for the month. Call this time your Creative Engagement. If you can devote more time to creativity that’s great, but everyone can manage a one hour window. Go mark those times in your diary NOW. Block them off. Make them a personal invitation to yourself. Something you look forward to. Something that makes you feel that delicious combination of anticipation, edginess, comfort and thrill. This is your time for actually working on that project you named back in January. (if you haven’t named a project scoot back to that post here – it’s not too late!)
2. Now give some thought to how you will spend those little creative blocks of time. Jot down a few ideas or a rough plan beside each Creative Engagement. Feel free to explore this even more in your journal.
3. Creative Date. Your Creative Date is separate to your Creative Engagement. We’ll be doing a Creative Date every month. It’s a date you spend on your own, filling up your well of ideas. The reason you need to do it on your own is that when you plan an outing and invite other people, so many of you (me included) end up making it about the other person’s comfort, enjoyment and fun. Dear friend, in 2013, you need to give a little care back to yourself, so fly solo for this date time. It doesn’t mean you need to be alone – you may find yourself at a book store, a workshop, a craft fair, an art gallery or a knitting circle. But you need to be there just for YOU.
So find one hour a month (it can be twenty minutes if that’s all you can spare, or more if you have that luxury of time) and go explore something that inspires your creative juices. It may not be directly related to your creative project. It just needs to help put you into a space where you are free to think about new ideas, and be inspired by the world around you. Take some time and journal a list of places you’d like to visit and things you’d like to do this year to inspire you and give you new ideas. During the year keep adding to your list. It’s important to have a wide range of things to choose from.
4. Dress like an Artist. This is just for fun, but honestly, it works! Pick a day and do one thing with your appearance that makes you feel more like your inner vision of yourself. It might be wearing a button on your lapel, some lace at your collar, or a striking necklace. It could be purple hair, a crazy vest, or an ultra-cool band t-shirt. Choose something that is a secret language with yourself,something that reminds you of your project. My pirate book project is dear to my heart. Ideas I’ve used include a lick n’ stick tattoo on my arm of a pirate boat and a skull and crossbones, a bracelet with little skulls on it, a funky pirate necklace and a satchel to hold my books that has a pirate motif on the front of it.
And don’t forget to leave a comment below and tell us about what you’ve been up to creatively. I’ve done a few hours editing on Mapping the Heart, cut and pasted all of last year’s Gratitude Challenge posts to turn into an ebook, and ordered a delicious tapestry pillow kit from www.erhmantapestry.com – here’s a picture of it: