It’s been a long, hot summer, and in the past few months I have fallen out of every good habit I’d managed to establish in the first half of the year.
Most months, I take this post as an opportunity to reflect on the creative goals I’d set, and decide what I want to try to do in the coming month. Sometimes, taking that time to reflect leads me in a direction that doesn’t really fit into the standard format I’ve established for these ‘sketchbooks.’
Which is a roundabout way of saying this might be long, and it might ramble a bit. I’m trying to figure out some stuff, here, and if this isn’t the best way for me to do it, at least it’s been effective in the past.
Ok? Let’s go.
The way I’ve been managing my creative life – the things I’m working on, my creative energy, my time – isn’t working.
When it comes to the big picture, I have a three-month attention span.
It takes three months for that initial burst of energy and enthusiasm to fade.
It takes three months to lose sight of my big goals, and get bored with the day-to-day grind required to achieve them. Three months to start to question whether those goals are actually possible, and whether I’ve got the drive to see them through. Three months to start thinking ’I don’t feel like writing today. I’ll make it up tomorrow.’
In other words, March was difficult.
It’s the first Snapshot of 2018! And, really, the first one in almost a month, because… just because, really. Anyway, I’ve been: searching | falling | wishing | slipping | thinking | catching | looking | baking | trying | starting
It turns out that getting three colds in the span of a month – and dropping Thanksgiving in in the middle of that – doesn’t exactly do wonders for my creativity or productivity.
So… yeah. October wasn’t a fantastic month.
Really, I’m fine with it. It wasn’t great, but in general, I’m happy with what I have been getting done under the circumstances.
The last two weeks would’ve been better if I didn’t keep getting colds. Still, I’ve been: loving | looking | making | enduring | starting | staying | daydreaming | hoping | thinking | exploring
Looking back, I can split August into two distinct creative phases: for the first couple of weeks, everything was… slow. I was getting some work done, but not as much as I wanted, and I wasn’t really into any of it.
Mostly, it was because I had a week’s vacation scheduled for the middle of the month, and I didn’t want to get too deep into anything, only to lose my momentum. It wasn’t a conscious thing, but… I know that it was there. (It’s kind of a habit for me, and not one I’m happy with.)
That said: the vacation was actually helpful.
The last two weeks, I’ve been: feeling | making | researching | editing | missing | putting | rethinking | thinking | trying | wishing
The last two weeks, I’ve been: hoping | thinking | running | getting | finishing | looking | taking | buying | falling | making
What I’m saying is, I had a lot of time to think when I was painting. And then some more when I was getting over my cold. And it struck me how much time I lose every day to things that… matter, and that I’m interested in, but that aren’t really what I want to be focussed on. It’s not procrastination, as such, it’s just… not working on the right things. If that makes sense. I’m not sure that it does.