You know how it is, life is busy. Work, family, home, community, church, etc. We all have a lot on our plates. I know I do. I know you do too. Really, I don’t mind it. I like being busy. I like having things to do. I like having people to do them with. But one thing I do know, is that for a lot of people, making time to play or make art or be creative comes quite far down the list of priorities. That is NOT GOOD!
Making the time for creativity and playfulness in our everyday lives is absolutely crucial to being happier and less stressed. This is not something that can be pushed off to another day! This is not something that can be delegated away! This is not something that should be ignored! You have to give yourself permission to play and explore creativity and art EVERY DAY! It doesn’t have to be much, but you do have to do it.
I confess that I fall into the trap of thinking I can skip a day now and then because I am too busy or too tired. I’m no different from you. So I do have to remember to PLAY and CREATE, and remember that it is vitally important to my well-being and therefore the well-being of my family and friends. The people I spend time with. You know the saying – if mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy – well that is true! Take the time to BE HAPPY!
I use play and creativity and art interchangeably. But there are lots of ways to be playful and creative that don’t have to include making art. Cooking, gardening, poetry, theater, photography, decorating……all are creative in nature. Don’t forget that you can be creative in lots of areas of your life, not just making art in your studio (although that is my preferred way ). Let me share my ideas with you.
Top 10 Ways to Make Time for Creativity
- Put it on the calendar. In our heavily scheduled lives, we might need to actually schedule time for play. That is OK to do. We put all kinds of stuff on our schedule so we don’t forget about it, and playing and creating are no different. Go to your calendar right now and block out some time for you to create.
- Set your alarm 30 minutes early and do some art before your day even starts. Whether this involves sewing or painting or writing, just take the time to do it before your day starts. How amazing will your day be if you start it by taking the time to add a bit of creativity to your morning.
- Make up a traveling art kit. You can easily make a little pocket kit to take with you. We often spend time sitting and waiting at various places, and wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a small kit of supplies with you so you could relax and capture the moment. You can include sketching supplies, water colors, markers, gluesticks, hand sewing, Zentangle® supplies, etc. These are all easy to carry in a small bag so you can toss it in your purse or your car. Think about all the places you sit and wait. Use that time to add a bit of creativity to your day.
- Join a group. This is one of my favorites. There are a lot of groups and guilds out there for all kinds of creative things. What are you interested in? Sewing? Quilting? Painting? Poetry? Knitting? Fashion? Scrapbooking? Calligraphy? Whatever you are interested in, there is probably a group in your community already. And if there isn’t, why don’t you create one? Like-minded people help us to grow in our creativity, plus they are fun to hang out with.
- Plan a joint creative venture with your family. It’s easy to plan some activities for the whole family to do. If you have kids or grandkids around, they will love playing and creating. Can you have a finger painting contest with them? How about chalk painting in the driveway? Maybe you want to build a kite together? Can you and your spouse or significant other take a cooking class? Or a trip to the nursery to plan out your summer garden? The key is to get everyone involved, especially yourself. It’s often easier to play, if somebody is playing along with you.
- Take your lunch break and do something. You probably have a lunch break scheduled during your day. Very often, we eat quickly and try to get back to work or back to our list of chores that need to be done. That’s not good for you! What if you took that lunch break HOUR and played? If you have your travel kit with you (see #3 above) you can spend the time making art. If you are near a park you can spend the time walking in nature (nature feeds our creative side), perhaps taking photos or doing sketches of interesting flowers or trees that you find. Perhaps you can form a creative discussion group that meets at your work during lunch! Bring a book of poetry to work and take the time to read it out loud during your lunch break. Can you imagine how refreshed you will feel in the afternoon if you take this time during lunch for your creative self?
- Take the time at the end of the day to do some art journaling. Art journaling is very portable and quite versatile. You can dedicate a particular journal to recording your thoughts and your ideas about your day. Write or sketch or color or glue bits and pieces down – whatever you want to do. Just capture your day. You can have a journal kit next to your bed, so you have everything you need right there. If you have to go track down supplies at the end of the day, you probably won’t do it.
- Give yourself a Play Date. Sometimes we need more than just a few minutes a day to feed our creativity. If you feel like you need a bigger chunk of time, then schedule a Play Date to have fun and feed your muse. If you are able to schedule in a larger chunk of time (several hours or all day) once a week, your creativity will begin to blossom. Find that one thing that you love and spend your Play Date doing it! It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as you enjoy it and can spend time doing it. Invite some friends over and have a Play Date Party! Sounds like so much FUN!
- Get in the habit of taking photos. Take your camera with you, or even just use your cell phone. Find interesting things to take photos of. Taking photos helps you to look around and see what is going on. Is there interesting architecture, beautiful flowers, dazzling sunsets, unusual textures and patterns? Believe me, when you start taking photos, you will also start noticing things that you weren’t aware of before, and your creative muse will be fed.
- Just do it! I know that is such a cliche, but it is also true! You have to acknowledge that making time for play and creativity and art (in whatever shape or form it might come) is invaluable. I know your life will be better because you make the time to do it (and you know it too). And don’t you and your loved ones deserve to be happy? Don’t you want to feel better every day? Then make the time. Only you can decide to do it. It doesn’t have to be much. Even just a few minutes every day that you spend doing something that is playful and creative will improve your overall life. You can find a few minutes a day to be creative.
This list is just the starting point. I have MANY MORE ideas, but I’ll save those for another day. Did you find some inspiration and ideas that you could use? Choose one or two of these today and see how you feel. I believe you will feel happier. I know I feel better when I am able to make the time to be creative.
What other ideas can you think of to add to this list? Please share them below. How does making time for play and creativity make you feel? I always love to see your comments.
Let Your Inner Artist Out To Play
Blue Twig Studio – 5965 Whiskey River Dr – Colorado Springs, CO 80923 – USA