Hello everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful New Year and start to 2024. A new year can signify lots of different things to different people, but for many, it's a fresh start and a chance to improve on the year before. Some of us set resolutions to (hopefully) carry us through the year, and one of the most exciting and beneficial ones is developing a creative habit!
Whether you're wanting to draw more, crochet a blanket, or take up photography, building a creative habit benefits personal, mental, and even professional health. Here are some methods I've used in the past and will take forward this year to bring more creativity into my life.
Get Into a Routine
It may seem simple, but setting a routine (and keeping to it) is the best way to get any habit to stick. Studies say that it takes the average person 66 days of doing something before it becomes a habit. Consciously inserting it into your routine is a surefire way to hit that 66-day mark.
Everyone is different, and schedules can vary, so set a routine that works with your lifestyle. For some, creating every day is achievable, whereas for others, it may be once a week. The important thing is to set a goal that will push you but is still attainable. Write this goal down and display is somewhere visible to keep it in your mind. It may also help to schedule this goal using your chosen organisation method. For me, that would be writing it in my planner each week. For others, it may be setting a reminder on your phone or jotting it down on a post-it note, whatever works best for you.
Also, consider taking yourself on weekly or monthly artist dates and schedule these in too. An artist date is a date with your creative self, doing activities that spark inspiration. Not sure where to start? We've written a blog post jam-packed with ideas to start the ball rolling.
New Year, New Supplies
One of the best things about a new year is having an excuse to buy new supplies. Whether it's a new planner, sketchbook, paint, or yarn, new supplies means new possibilities! It can be all you need to spark motivation in building a new habit (maybe that's because you spent a bit too much money and now feel guilty if you don't follow through, or your shiny new toy is just calling your name!)
One of my favourite things to do is to get a new sketchbook and dedicate it to one of my goals. It could be for messy drawings, to improve my landscape paintings, to build my portfolio, or to join an art challenge, which brings me onto my next point...
Setting a challenge is a great way to force yourself into a routine and build a habit. There are lots of group challenges you can take part in online or you can set one yourself. It could be a time-based challenge, such as drawing/knitting/bookbinding/taking a photograph everyday for 365 days, or doing something you find difficult, such as painting portraits once a week. It may also help posting about it online to hold yourself accountable and meet others completing challenges in 2024.
Getting inspired is a great way to find motivation to start a habit. I've written many blog posts on different ways to spark your creative fire, here are some of my favourites:
- What's Inspiring Me This Autumn and Winter
- 5 Ways to Get Inspired for Free
- 5 Books to Kick-Start Your Creativity
- 5 Ways to Fill a Sketchbook
- 5 More Ways to Fill a Sketchbook
Keep in mind that inspiration can be fleeting, and it's not always sustainable to rely on it to be creative. Make sure to set processes in place or build a bank of resources for when you're feeling a bit stumped.
Healthy Habits are Born from a Healthy Mindset
Creativity comes from a state of mind, so it's important to keep your brain happy and healthy. Do what brings you joy and remember to be kind to yourself. Take breaks when you need them and don't feel guilty if you skip days or can't meet a goal. We set habits and goals to benefit ourselves, if they no longer serve you stop doing them.
Thank you so much for reading! I hope you enjoyed this blog post and are feeling motivated to start a creative habit in 2024. Let me know in the comments below what you're planning on taking up this year.
I hope you have a wonderful day full of joy, inspiration, and colour!