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Posts Tagged ‘Self Care’

10 Minutes To More Creativity

Wednesday, September 19th, 2018

Only 10 minutes to more creativity? That sounds doable, right? It is, and it’s as simple as sitting quietly and focusing on your breath.

For the past several years I have been recommending meditation to my private clients.

At our Creative Arts Business Summit, I lead a guided meditation. For some of my clients, this is a powerful exercise.

I also have my own meditation practice that is part of my morning ritual. I was around meditation for a long time before I started to practice. My sister has taught mindfulness meditation for more than 10 years after many more years of a personal practice, and my husband has also had a long-time practice. Despite their encouragement, I could not think of myself as someone who meditated. After all, I couldn’t possibly sit still that long. The first time I tried, I stopped and looked at the clock and barely two minutes had passed. And, I could not shake the long-held idea that meditation somehow was for hippies or new-age types.

I somehow got over that. Read, I stopped self-sabotaging myself.  And, I began a meditation practice. I have found that it has a positive impact on my life. I can see this in my everyday activities and in my own creativity.

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Creating white space

Wednesday, August 15th, 2018

 

As artists, we understand the need for white space. White space is the space between design elements and also the space inside the design elements. Without white space, which truly doesn’t have to be “white,” everything would run together. Imagine if there was no white space in this type. It would all run together and be confusing, to say the least.

The amount of white space you include varies based on your design decisions. Your goal should be to balance design elements, organize the content for ease of use, and to allow a place for the eye to rest.

You also need white space in your life, space that allows you to rest and reconnect. Once you appreciate what it does in the art you create and the art you view, you can appreciate its value in your business and life.

Imagine if your life or business calendar was jam packed with no relief. You would end up overwhelmed, frustrated and stressed. You could become resentful about what tugs at your life.

If you go back to the goal of white space in design work and think about the concept in your life and business, it would balance your life, organize your days, and let you have rest.

Here are some ways you can create and use more white space in your life.

Schedule it

You can’t have more white space if you don’t allow for it purposefully. It’s so easy to fill your calendar with things to do that you don’t have any time left to rest or for yourself. Get out your calendar and block that space off. You need to make you a priority. If you don’t, chances are that you will find yourself overworked and overwhelmed.

An important note: you need to schedule your white space first rather then work it around your other commitments. Chances are if you try to fit it around everything else, it will fall by the wayside.

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3.5 Tips to Start the New Year

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

We are about to start a New Year. I’m excited about some of the things I have planned. I’m working with a coach to expand the business, and I have some new business programs planned for later in the year. As I look ahead, I can see that I have a lot to accomplish, and I need to stay focused to do that. A lot of you know one of my favorite planning resources is Your Best Year Yet by Jinny Ditzler, and following her process helps me focus. You can read some of the questions she asks on a previous blog post.

I wanted to share three and a half tips to keep in mind as you start the New Year.

1. Set time for yourself in your calendar. I’m sure I’m not the only one who doesn’t take enough time for her or himself. This fall I had knee surgery and was sidelined from my yoga class. I plan to get back in class this winter. And, I want to also set aside time each afternoon for a little self care. It’s important to find a little time here and there to care for ourselves. We’ll feel happier and stronger inside and this will in turn make us happier and stronger business people. One good reference on self care is The Art of Extreme Self Care by Cheryl Richardson.

2. Remember to allow adequate time for marketing. For many, the production is the fun part and the marketing takes a back seat. I’ve had more than one person tell me that she spends two to four times as many hours marketing herself and her product as she does producing the product. Marketing is an ongoing process; you are always marketing. I love this quote from actress Carrie Fisher, “There is no point at which you can say, “Well, I’m successful now. I might as well take a nap.” This keeps me focused on marketing my product.

3. Keep on top of your financials. I know, most people do not enjoy bookkeeping, and if you can hire someone to take it over, that’s great. But watch your numbers. You need to know what’s coming in and what’s going out. What is your ROI (return on investment) for your activities? Your business can’t grow if you aren’t aware of the financials.

3.5 Remember why you got into business. For many of us, it was our love of quilting or fiber arts and wanting to share our gifts with other quilters. Sure, we work hard at it, and we are rewarded. When times get tough, step back and remember what got you in the business. Maybe use some of that self-care time to make something for yourself. Another quote I like is from Thomas A. Edison. “I never did a day’s work in my life. It was all fun.”

The International Association of Professional Quilters offers resources and networking opportunities for you to create a success from your quilting business. Learn about all the benefits of IAPQ membership here.

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