Tag: patience

Sharing Space

With everyone home during the day, I find myself sharing spaces at home that used to just be mine—like my art desk.

Here are some ways we’re making this work.

① Communication: Share what is working for you and what isn’t. Decide on guidelines together for using the space. How to people schedule time? What can be left in the space? If something is left in the space, can other people use it?

Patience: If something goes wrong, wait until everyone is calm to discuss it. If it is not your turn for the space, wait until it is. Ask, don’t accuse. Suggest, don’t order. Discuss, don’t dictate.

Sharing is Caring: Remember that it is the relationship with the people that you are sharing space with that matters. Compliment their work. Respect their efforts. Be understanding when things don’t go well.

😊🍀Good luck!🍀😊

If you are learning to share space right now, what is working well for you? What isn’t working?

Patience

Who likes waiting? I don’t. Waiting is hard. And yet, there is so much waiting to do in life. I overheard two ten-year-olds recently:

“I’ve been to Disneyland before,” the first said.

“I haven’t. What’s it like?”

“It’s fun, but you spend most of the time waiting in lines. The lines are so long.”

Even in Disneyland there is a lot of waiting. I guess it is inescapable.

Recently, I’ve been looking back on the year and seeing how much I’ve grown. It’s nice to see that there is improvement. Day-to-day, that’s hard to see.

Waiting for visible improvement is hard. If I lost a few pounds every time I exercised, it would be a lot easier to keep up. A month of exercise without any improvement at all, on the other hand, makes patience difficult. (And exercising is much less fun than drawing or painting. This is probably why this is such a difficult habit for me to keep. Maybe if I could keep it up long enough for me to be a little better at it, I’d enjoy it more…)

A speaker at church on Sunday reminded us that we learn a lot faster with formal education. I went home and started researching art schools and programs once again. I looked at the cost and sighed and closed the windows in my browser.

Learning on my own is more difficult, and takes longer. But, I do improve. I am getting better. I just need to be patient and keep it up. Waiting is hard. It’s a good thing that art is fun. (Most of the time…)

If waiting isn’t much fun, how do we develop patience? Looking back and seeing progress helps. Remembering why I’m doing this helps. Promising myself specific rewards helps. Feeling accountable in some way helps. (For example, not wanting to miss a day in your sketchbook or on your blog, or having someone you draw with or share pictures with regularly. Finding a mentor to check in with is good too.)

I often remind myself that if I wasn’t doing any art at all, I would miss it. Time would pass either way, and not doing any art wouldn’t bring me any closer to my goals. And those times when everything goes right somehow and something I did leaves me asking, “I made that?” That’s probably the most motivating of all. It’s worth the wait.

Do you enjoy waiting? Do you have any tips for making waiting fun or at least a little easier?

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Little Moments

It’s easy to think that you can only start writing or painting or drawing when you have lots of extra time. Sometimes I imagine just sitting down and working for hours in a perfectly clean studio without being disturbed by anything. Do you ever have similar dreams?

If that’s the expectation, it can be difficult to start anything because you feel like you don’t have hours available. Carving out big blocks of time is nearly impossible. Like digging a hole in the sand, life rushes in at the edges, filling up the available time.

Some people solve this dilemma by rigidly scheduling and defending their time. They write for an hour before their family wakes up or paint for two hours after lunch, and they keep their appointments with themselves. Through constant, steady effort, like the tortoise, they are winning all their races by achieving their goals.

Others, like the hare, get distracted. Any extra time is quickly taken up by the needs of the moment, and their goals suffer. But, there is hope.

Little moments of time are easily overlooked, but they can add up. How much can you get done in fifteen minutes? In five?

If you can find fifteen minutes a day, in six days that’s an hour and a half. Fifteen minutes isn’t so hard to find. You can find fifteen minutes waiting for water to boil or dinner to cook.

If your project is portable, that’s even better. I’m writing a rough draft of this post in a notebook as I am sitting waiting outside a workshop. Carrying around a notebook or sketchbook makes your work portable. That makes it easier to take advantage of those little moments where you’d be checking Facebook or reading the old magazines in the waiting room.

You can make a list ahead of time of things you can accomplish in five or ten or fifteen minutes. Or you can just set a timer and jump in. Through trial and error, you’ll figure out what works best for you. The most important thing is doing something. If you never begin, you never get anywhere at all.

Do you practice art in small moments or schedule larger blocks of time? If you work in those little moments, what do you do? If you’ve made a list of possible projects, what are some of the things on your list?

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