Category: DIY Art School

Routines II

Getting a routine to stick takes at least two weeks.

Is it worth the bother?

I think so. Knowing what’s coming next brings a feeling of safety in uncertain times.

Routines don’t have to be strict schedules. Those are really hard to stick to. It’s easier when they’re adaptable. In my experience, routines need:

to have purpose. Decide what you really need or want to do each day/week/month.

to have order. Fit your planned activities around the set points of your schedule (meals, regular appointments, etc.) in an order that makes sense. I like to vary my activity level—active chores before/after a lot of sitting down, for example.

to have breathing room. Don’t cram your schedule too full. Life happens. You don’t have to do everything every day.

to change when they aren’t working. Get input from those around you. Think about what things you aren’t enjoying—or keep skipping. Check in regularly.

Do you have a routine? How do you make it work for you?

Managing Fear

Feeling afraid, stressed, overwhelmed, or anxious can really make it difficult to be creative.

What can you do

Be patient with yourself. Calling yourself names or setting unrealistic deadlines will only add to your stress level. Be kind.

Talk it out. This can be done multiple ways. Talk to a friend or family member — or multiple people. Also write it out in a notebook. In Julia Cameron’s book “The Artist’s Way,” she recommends writing (by hand) 3 pages daily to unload whatever your brain is occupied with.

Take a break. Do something that doesn’t engage your brainlet it relax as you walk, do dishes, bake cookies…something repetitive and calming.

Accept less than your best. During difficult times, it can be a victory to show up and get something done. Sometimes that’s just how it is, and it’s enough.

Save you favorite mental escape — movies, social media, books, chocolate — as a reward for getting work done. (The first step of a large project, another item checked off your list, a half hour of solid work, etc.

How do you manage your fear? What helps when you feel anxious or overwhelmed? How do you continue to create?

Just Keep Going

Life is made up of opposites. There is day and night, happiness and sorrow, too busy and too bored. And of course, there are good days and bad days.

Somehow, life is predictable and full of surprises. Strange, right?

Sometimes there are bad weeks and bad months and bad years. Sometimes you only know which weeks and months and years were the good ones when you look back on them from the middle of hard times–the contrast makes it seem obvious.

It is important to know that life goes up and down like a roller coaster, because in the middle of a bad year, it feels like things will never be okay again.

Things will be okay again. The tide goes in, the tide goes out. The earth turns. The seasons change. Nothing stays the same. Life gets hard, then it gets better again.

On a bad art day, a bad life day, a bad hair day, know that it will get better—and JUST KEEP GOING.

Routines

Small actions, when they’re done consistently, can really add up.

A group of these small actions makes up a routine. Routines are amazing. Why?

 ① You are improving whatever actions you choose to do consistently. For example: a sketch each day.

An existing routine makes adding potential new habits much, much easier. You can simply fit it in with something you already do, and you instantly have a plan for accomplishing it and a built-in reminder. (That doesn’t mean it will be easy—just easier.)

𝓠 : But what if you have no routines to start from?

𝒜 : Do you eat lunch every day? Wake up? Watch a favorite TV show? These are mini-routines and can be built on to create longer routines.

🟩🟥🟦🟩 Routines are POWERFUL ways to reach your goals a little at a time. Small things are easiest to add and continue to do.🟥🟦🟩🟥

🌟How have routines helped you reach your goals?

Balance

Lately, I’ve been trying to find balance. Strangely enough, this has led me to feel a little out-of-balance. What happened❓

Luke 2:52 says: “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.”

This suggests there are 4 areas where we can improve:

Mental, Physical, Spiritual and Social

I’ve tried to work on goals in each area. Sometimes I do better than others.

My current troubles began when I realized I wasn’t exercising enough. So, I added more exercise. Problem solved, right?

Unfortunately, my clock refuses to add hours to make room for extra exercise. Things are feeling a little crunched right now.

I’m enjoying the exercise, but finding a new balance isn’t easy.

  It’s an ongoing process. I’ll keep you updated.

What are your goals? How is your balance? Any growing pains as you work on your goals?

Rest

Christmas is over, and I am tired.

I love Christmas, but there is always so much going on at once and so much pressure—probably mostly self-inflicted.

I’d like to take a little break. Unfortunately, I still haven’t figured out how to freeze time. That makes this a little more difficult.

How do you rest without coming back to even more work to do?

Some ways to find rest on a busy schedule:

  • Ask for help or just some company along the way. Prayer counts too. Feeling less alone makes things seem less crazy.
  • Sing a hymn or a song that makes you smile. You may feel silly, but it does help.
  • Do less. Even just a little less. Give yourself that permission.
  • Breathe. Listen to your breath. Let your worries wait for a minute or two. Breathe them away.
  • Take a short nap (set an alarm). *This does not work for me, but it does for others.
  • Sketch something. I like to sketch how I’m feeling as monsters—it gives a silly face to my problems.
  • Look for what’s funny. Think of one funny thing that happened today. Imagine telling someone about it—exaggerate it a little. Use silly voices. Write it down.
  • Look for hope. How will tomorrow be better? Next week? What awesome things are you looking forward to this evening? This weekend?

→ Things will get better. Somehow, they always do. Wait for it. ❤️

Do you have any ideas to add to my list? Please let me know!

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