Living artfully is the most critical skill to master if you want to be happy no matter what is happening. When you have a storehouse of creative inspiration and the ability to think creatively, you will be able to solve the problems that arise in life more easily. Also… you will likely be HAPPIER! And more productive!
No matter what you profession- fireman, high school teacher, executive, housewife, artist, student…anything!- you will be able to perform better if your creative thought process is well-developed. In her breakthrough creativity book, The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron talks about the need to “fill the well” of your creative resources by going on a weekly “artist date” by yourself where you allow yourself to PLAY. Play is the operative word… none of this is WORK but it will make you far more able to work effectively.
Here are some great ideas to live more artfully right now:
1. Take your hobby to the next level. If you love photography, get yourself a better camera or a new lens. If you are a home chef, can you grab a special piece of equipment (maybe a mandolin? a fancy waffle iron?) to make something more professionally and expand your repertoire? Investing in anything to get a little bit better at what you do for fun will stretch your mind and raise your ability level!
2. Play with animals. Although I would love nothing more than to see every pet-less person in the world who reads this to go adopt an animal immediately, I understand that is not always possible. What is possible? Try fostering a cat or dog that is up for adoption for a week or two… or… just volunteer at a local shelter or rescue organization to go play with the dogs and cats before they find their homes. Animals have incredible energy and they live to play!
3. Go to a lovely dinner… alone!
4. Try out a new, pampering service that is purely fun! Massage, spa, facials, body work, you name it! Your local Groupon or Living Social service can fill your email inbox with classes you have always wanted to try at a massive discount that makes it affordable.
5. Write your autobiography up till now… then fill in the future if you’d like! Then… publish it! Blurb.com is a great service to make your own book, and you can order copies for yourself, or even your friends… Even if its a short story or prose poem, it is exciting to see your life in print and photos.
6. Nature is a big part of life… so immerse yourself it it, even if its occasional.
7. Learn to dance. Tango, ballet, hip hop… whatever you want. Dancing is another way to use your body to communicate. Even if you never, ever dance on a stage or for a purpose other than to party, your dancing classes will strengthen the way you see and love your body for all it can do and be… and its sooo much fun!
8. Take some photos and frame them! Framed photographs are simply more special. If you want to get fancy, create a photo series (even using your phone camera!) and print them on an Epson printer or at a lab in large-format with great photo quality. Make those photos true art. This is the most powerful form of decor, especially for a creative office.
9. Send cards or other mail to your friends. My friend from college does a “mass-mailer” every so often. Its full of images, inspiring quotes, updates and… well.. its just amazing to actually GET MAIL. Mailing out something special to friends, family… even your clients: this is super-personal and the possibilities for what you can mail are pretty endless.
10. Buy yourself flowers and arrange them!!! Fruit, flowers, vegetables…twigs, berries, herbs, leaves… anything goes if you want to make exciting bouquets!
What are your ideas to add to the list? What has worked for you? What do you dream of doing??? Let me know! I’m always adding to the list, and you are my greatest inspiration!!! xoxo Dana