Do you find yourself getting overwhelmed with creative ideas? Or sinking into a productivity lacking rut? How about loosing your crafting mojo because you want to work on other new ideas but have so many currently in the works that you just can't?This is a nearly constant obstacle towards accomplishing the things I need and want to accomplish in a day. It's so hard to keep things simple... the KISS method is great in theory, but in practice? not that easy to stick with. Oh, if only we didn't have to sleep!!!
How do we renew/refresh our creative energies when we've gotten lost in the overwhelming abundance of ideas that take us far away from the tasks we mean to accomplish? How do we return to the roots of our passion? Center our creativity?
For some of us, it's as simple as connecting with nature. Others may need to go down the road of an emotional melt down to clear out the clutter (totally me on occasion) or deep clean the house and get rid of junk. How do you reconnect to and refresh your creative energy?
I have ADD/ADHD so the energy and ideas are off the charts wild and crazy. Centering my thoughts is not an easy task on the best of days. On the worst days, well... sometimes I count a day as a loss and move on. Other days I'm able to salvage some focus and accomplish stuff. Nature brings me peace, so when my energy is filled with anxiety, a walk can really help center all that energy back into a usable form. Any physical activity helps tremendously. When I'm angry, I clean the house... it's the only time my house gets deep cleaned by me. The rest of the time, it's the kids' job.
Journaling... or rather, lists of tasks and ideas... that's another one of my tricks. sometimes I will make long lists of things I want to do, break them down into further and more detailed lists of ideas that branch out from each main item, and then color code them into categories based on what should happen first, what is most important to accomplishing my current goals, etc. Most of the time, I end up full circle back to the basics of what needs to be done today to prep me for tomorrow. It's like magic... I guess getting all the ideas out on paper allows me to stop focusing on them and I'm able to poor all my energy into the things I HAVE to do, instead of sitting around frustrated because I want to do everything but can't.
I used to live in a constant state of overwhelm. I still have days or moments, but they don't cripple me anymore like they used to. My mindset has changed majorly over the last 6 months or so. I no longer focus on all the things that need to be done and how little energy I have. Instead, I make a list of things that need to get done and prioritize those things, breaking up what I can throughout the week so I don't have too many big things happening in the same day. I ask myself every day... what can I get done today? what do I want to accomplish today? how is my energy? Realistically, what will I probably get done? What is making me feel overwhelmed (if I am) and how can I start attacking those things so I am no longer overwhelmed? It's usually calling and scheduling doctor appointments that gets me... I don't know why, a phone call is such a simple thing... but I get overwhelmed every single time I need to schedule an appointment. Then... and this is the big one... when I get back from dropping kids off at school in the morning and the rest of the house is still asleep, I start working. I prefer to spin in the quiet morning hours, but I also will take the time to create lessons plans for my two homeschool kids, make a grocery list, make a tasks-that-need-to-be-done-this-week list... I like lists. I find if I get right into working first thing in the morning (after coffee, online game time, and waking up routine) then I accomplish more throughout the day. If I get home from dropping kids off at school and sit down on the couch with my computer game or a youtube video, or pick up a book, nothing... I mean NOTHING gets done that day.
Finding balance between what HAS to be done and what we WANT to do is hard. I am still struggling to find a healthy balance. Being ok with plans that just don't happen, sudden creative ideas that take over and completely derail the week... these things are important and accepting those moments when they happen, allowing them to happen is important, too. It's not always about how much we can get done, but about how much joy we find in our day.
What do you do to conquer overwhelm and creative slumps? How do you push yourself to be productive when you would rather spend the day in bed? How do you rejuvenate your creative energies? and most importantly... how do you find and maintain balance between being productive and creative and taking care of yourself? I'd love to hear your tips and tricks in the comments below.