Or perhaps you simply want to finish 2016 having produced something – anything – really good, that you can be proud of, that didn’t even exist on January 1st.
OK, there are hundreds of web sites and blogs out there bombarding you probably with ways in which to make this year your Best Year Ever. I know, I’m being bombarded too, even as I’m writing a bomb to contribute to the mayhem.
But this is a creative web site, so I’m not going to tell you how to lose weight or eat better or even get promoted or start our own company or reduce your golf handicap or improve your relationship with your spouse.
What I am going to do is challenge you to be creative. Here’s the challenge:
That’s it. Think of something creative you love doing but don’t do nearly often enough, such as writing or painting or composing or knitting or pottery or photography or jewellery making.
This could be a blog post or a poem or a course unit or a watercolour or a scarf or a plate or a vase or a recipe or a set of photos or a pair of earrings and matching necklace or a page in a scrap book or a song.
I want it to be something you can complete one or two of, every week.
Then do it once or twice a week. For a year.
How amazing will it feel (not ‘would’, we’re not doing ‘would’ this semester), on 31st December, 2016, to hold your book in your hands, or to leaf through your poetry collection or admire the series of beautiful paintings lining the walls or to think of the 50 elderly people you made happy with your hand-crafted woolen gifts or the craft fairs you can now attend with your collection of home-made pottery or unique moulded Star Wars characters or glass animal ornaments.
Once again, if at all possible it should be something unique which you create, which didn’t exist before, and which you can hold or point at or read or listen to, as opposed to a skill or qualification or loss of weight. These latter goals are worthy but they don’t really fit the definition of creative, and that’s what we’re all about.
Don’t worry, you’re not going to do it alone. There will be at least one other person you can share you woes and wonders with. Me.
Yep, I’m going to do it with you, and we can chat about it and share our struggles and successes here in the I Create Therefore I Am Facebook Group. Or, perhaps, if all goes according to plan, in a brand new place I’m setting up just for this idea.
But that’s enough about me. Let’s talk about you. What do you think about me? 😉
Joke. But actually, you might be asking, what is my creative challenge for 2016 – me, Sab, the 50-year-old guy who’s writing the words you’re in the process of reading. At least, I hope you’re asking that because creativity and curiosity go hand in hand.
Could you really take me seriously if I wasn’t going to come out, as it were, as a real human being, just like you, who also has goals and dreams and show you how I’m going to do my best, with your help, to achieve them this year?
Probably not. So I’ll tell you.
1) I will write 100 articles on creativity by 31st December, 2016.
2) I will publish a Sabism* every day of 2016, 366 in total.
*Check out my Rip Off, Repurpose, Repeat article on Creative Business Mind if you want to know in detail what a Sabism is, and how to create your very own ~ism collection. Or just look at this, this is one:
You might be thinking it’s not possible, or that it’s too hard to produce something really worthwhile once or twice a week, but it is (possible) and it isn’t (too hard), as long as you do it properly.
In fact, I can prove it to you right now, because I’ve done it. You see, one of my passions is Paris, and another is writing, and yet another is photography and in case you wanted a fourth, I’m pretty fond of my iPhone too.
So a few years ago I decided I’d combine the lot of them and start a blog called Paris & I. You won’t be surprised when I tell you that it’s a place I posted short reflective articles illustrated with street photos of Paris taken on, you guessed it, my iPhone.
I’ve been doing other things recently, and haven’t touched it for a couple of years, but if you do check it out, scroll down to the Blog Archive on the right. You’ll see that between 2010 and 2013 I posted a grand total of around 1300 articles, including – drum roll please – a straight run of 1000 days in a row.
(I swiped a few pics from the blog for this article and a stroll down memory lane.)
Moral of the story, obviously, if I can do it, anyone can. This achievement was accomplished principally through:
🐟 Doing something I loved
🐢 Being as creative and original as possible
🐟 Making it highly personal
🐢 Little and often, self-contained, manageable chunks
🐟 Slow and steady; the Tortoise, not the Hare
🐢 Regular, powerful mini-rewards (clicking ‘Publish’ daily!)
🐟 Feeling that others liked what I was doing
🐢 Having a rock-solid, finite target (1000 posts)
As with most effective goals, I had a What, a Why and a How, but that’s for another time.
1) Accompany me on this Creative Leap Year adventure;
2) Complete your own Creative Leap Year in 2016.
Whether you do it for a professional goal, personal satisfaction, to increase your reputation, for simple pride and satisfaction, to enlarge your body of work for just to get something worthwhile finished and under your belt for once, I’m excited to hear what your project is!
It’s really easy, do it like this, look. Copy this and fill it in with Your Thing:
I will create a (thing) on (a certain day) every week until the end of 2016.
I will create 50 / 100 (things) by 31st December, this year.
Then just do it. You will need to decide exactly when you’re going to do it and respect that decision. A regular time or deadline each week is best but you work it out to what suits you best.
Still not sure? Heck, it’s a Leap Year, for crying out loud! So let’s make it a Creative Leap Year to boot!
I don’t know you; you don’t know me: what have we got to lose? Nothing! And everything to gain.
I’ll be going into more detail on this in the weeks and months to come, so welcome aboard and let’s do this thing. Onwards and upwards, yes, especially upwards! Shoot for the moon!
As well as I Create Therefore I Am (this site!) he runs Creative Business Mind (business creativity and innovation), Mind Map Mad (mind mapping & visual problem solving) and Fun English Lessons (an on-line language learning site).
Sab offers dynamic, personalised training in innovative thinking, creative problem solving and mind mapping to companies, educational establishments and motivated individuals. Please get in touch here to find out how increased creativity and innovation can help boost your business and your life.