Saturday, May 23, 2015

May Fish..... Idea Generator

A few months ago, I began generating daily lists of ideas as per James Altucher's article on daily practices to create positive changes and momentum in his personal and professional life. Doing this exercise flexes our idea-generating muscles and expands our scope of possibilities.

Some days, creating my list screeches to a halt if only a few things come to mind, so one day, I grabbed a nearby piece of homemade purple, peppermint scented, glitter filled play doh and began squeezing it. I got caught up in the scent, sparkles and lovely squishy-ness of it. Relaxing allowed the ideas to pop into my head. I quickly completed my list and moved on to other things.

This is my go-to now when I need to clear my thoughts, release focusing momentarily on the must-do list and generate my ideas list.

See if 3-d doodling with clay helps you think outside the box.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

May Fish Day 9......Make a Wish

                         "Make a Wish"
As a kid, I was enchanted with dandelions and spent hours using them in as many ways as I could...connecting them to make necklaces, adding them to my stone, flower petal and pine needle soup, or pulling them apart to make butterfly beds. They were the perfect addition to just about everything. My favorite thing to do with them, though, was something I learned from my grandmother, who was a big believer in wishing.

Pusteblume, which were plentiful in the nearby park, were the perfect vehicle for making wishes. My grandmother showed me how to select just the right one, make a grand wish, and then send the tiny dry seeds on the big puff sailing off into the air. Every last seed had to be airborne for the wish to be granted.

Every time I see a dandelion puff, I think about all the wishes I'd made over a lifetime. Tiny moments of joy and eager anticipation as the little seeds lifted off and made their way out into the world. I still enjoy doing this today.

Grab a pusteblume sometime, make a wish and blow. Send your wishes and see what happens.

Monday, May 4, 2015

May Fish Day 4......Micro Gardening

"Micro Gardening"

Each day as I head out, I walk down the footpath in front of my house. The weeds seem to grow several inches each night while I sleep. They seem to be saying, "Hey, if you leave us here, before you know it, we'll be 9 feet tall and we'll look like we were planted on purpose."

Oh. Time for a gardening micro movement.

Setting the timer, I began yanking weeds. Focusing completely on the dirt, shaking worms loose and removing all remnants of roots, I was startled by the timer as it went off in what seemed like 2 minutes, rather than the 10 I initially set.
I had made so much progress, I reset for another 10 and continued.

In time, the space will be cleared and now, as I walk by, I see I'm making progress, in small doable steps.

Today, find a spot that could use a bit of gardening (cleaning, weeding, clipping) and give it a few minutes of your time. See how it makes you feel.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

May Fish Day 2 ......Micro Painting

I walked into a framing shop last week and as one woman cut mats for a painting I had recently sold, another looked longingly at the little watercolor I had brought in and told me she wished she could make some art, but it didn't fit into her schedule and she couldn't find the time.

For many people, including what we love to do (things like making art, writing, creating music, being with animals, being outside, moving and exercising, baking, etc.) is essential in creating a sense of well being and joy in our lives.

I asked the woman who wanted to make stuff if she had the time to do some micro art, a miniature version of a piece she dreamed of creating but didn't have the time to do. Could she give herself 15 minutes to paint something small? Working tiny had not occurred to her and her idea of how her work "should be" had prevented her from seeing other possibilities and having fun while creating at all.

Today, make a tiny version of something. I keep a little watercolor set nearby to do very quick little sketches on days that are filled, and that's enough to keep me going.

Spend a few minutes making a tiny piece of creative work-allow yourself 15 minutes to work. It could be a sketch on a dinner napkin, doodling in a notebook, drawing on an etch-a-sketch, squishing up some play-doh, arranging leaves in a pattern, making a creative looking snack, writing a short song, etc...

See what happens.
What can you make today?

Friday, May 1, 2015

May Fish Day 1....A Month of Micro Movements

"Micro steps to Space Clearing"
Short and sweet....a month of micro movements.

I find it keeps things fun and interesting for me to be involved in many creative projects at the same time. My interest and energy levels fluctuate and things can take longer than I initially anticipated.  Sometimes procrastination pops into the picture and it's easy to push that thing I don't want to do into the background, saving it for another day. It's amazing what I can find to do instead of finishing that one task which would keep me right on track.
 During May, I've decided to adopt the process of micro movements, something I saw recently in a SARK book. She recommends breaking a process down into tiny, doable steps that lead to the successful completion of the big picture.
Today, I start with some Space Clearing.  As I have recently allowed my studio space and art supplies to become chaotic, unmanageable and disorganized in my eagerness to complete several projects at once, I've decided to create a plan to get it organized, one micro step at a time.
Find a place in your home or studio (or car) and set a timer for 7 minutes. Toss, organize and clean up for that time and then stop. If you feel like it, rinse and repeat. See what happens.
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