Normal is no longer ‘normal’.
The rules have changed.
All those books, videos, and articles, telling us how to streamline our days to gain us that often small precious window of time to achieve our creative endeavours, are now a thing of the past.
Because we all suddenly have gained lots of extra time.
Commuting time. Coffee break and lunch time, where most of us probably still sat at our desks and worked. Outside the house hobby and sport time.
You can make your own list.
Instead we have the pressure to create because we have all of this ‘time to create’ time.
It turns out that having all the time we need is just as paralysing as not having enough time for our creative endeavours.
So what’s the solution?
For me, I went on the clock.
Some of you might remember going to work and having to ‘clock in’?
You had a card and you put it in the machine and your name and time ended up on a little printed receipt roll, which told the office that you had turned up on time, worked your day (when you clocked out) so they should pay you your full daily amount.
My own version of this has been to set a count down timer for fifteen minutes.
I clock in – press start.
Then stop when Chewbacca roars at me.
It doesn’t sound much, does it?
But with this timer I’m hitting an average of 440 words in that fifteen minutes and this includes ‘thinking time’, as I am generally a ‘pantser’ when I write fiction.
Two fifteen minute sessions and I am almost hitting my minimum 1000 word target a day.
Why did I choose 15 minutes?
I realised that I often wrote as much in 15-20 minutes as I sometimes did in an hour!
And, I could not possibly find an excuse not to write for fifteen minutes if/when our new normal goes back to the old normal.
Try it for yourselves.
Set a timer for whatever period works best for your type of creativity.
It might be a 30 minutes session if you are a musician? An hour session if you paint.
Remember you can do multiples!
Clock in and clock out.
Let me know how you get on with it.