Each week’s Monday Post image and quote are intended to inspire and connect you to your creative path. To further serve that purpose, I’ve created a PDF of 85 favorite Monday Post images and quotes, gathered for your easy perusal. Whether you’d like to start your creative practice with a new quote each day, or you’d like to keep the PDF on hand in case you feel creatively blocked, this PDF belongs in your creative toolkit.
If there are any images that you’d prefer to have in jpeg format to use as a desktop background, screensaver, or whatever else, feel free to visit the Monday Post album at the Studio Mothers Facebook page, where you can browse and download anything you like.
I was hoping to be able to offer the file without making you provide an e-mail address — as I’m personally annoyed by freebies that require personal info — but at 19MB, the file far exceeds the WordPress size limit. The download is available via e-junkie, for which you do need to enter a name and an e-mail address — but I assure you that I’m not collecting this info and won’t be adding you to any mailing list (or sharing your address with anyone else) unless you check the subscription box.
Click here to access the free download.
Last week at this time I was traveling from Massachusetts to Washington State — along with my family, three cats, and large dog — and as the days leading up to our relo were too full for me to make time for the blog, we missed last week’s Monday Post altogether. Apologies if you came looking for it! In the coming weeks, I’ll be giving Studio Mothers some much-needed attention.
So, the Monday Post. A regular creative practice — a daily practice, if possible — is key to staying in touch with how you make meaning. Key to living, not postponing. (Let’s all agree to give up on “someday.”)
What are your plans for creative practice this week? Given the specifics of your schedule, decide on a realistic intention or practice plan — and ink that time in your calendar. The scheduling part is important, because as you know, if you try to “fit it in” around the edges, it generally won’t happen. An intention as simple as “I will write for 20 minutes every morning after breakfast” or “I will sketch a new still life on Wednesday evening” is what it’s all about. If appropriate, use time estimates to containerize your task, which can make a daunting project feel more accessible.
Share your intentions or goals as a comment to this post, and let us know how things went with your creative plans for last week. We use a broad brush in defining creativity, so don’t be shy. We also often include well-being practices that support creativity, such as exercise and journaling.
Putting your intentions on “paper” helps you get clear on what you want to do — and sharing those intentions with this community leverages the motivation of an accountability group. Join us!
If you’re an artist or writer with little ones, The Creative Mother’s Guide: Six Creative Practices for the Early Years is the essential survival guide written just for you. Concrete strategies for becoming more creative without adding stress and guilt. Filled with the wisdom of 13 insightful creative mothers; written by a certified creativity coach and mother of five. “Highly recommended.” ~Eric Maisel. 35 pages/$11.98. Available for download here.
I’ve interviewed creative women with young children at home who are desperately unhappy because they can’t get their creative work done with any kind of regularity, or even at all. Probing more deeply, I often learn that so-and-so writer mother can’t consider working on her novel if she doesn’t have four hours to herself. When I suggest trying to be more flexible with work opportunities, she resists. So then the question becomes, gently: “Do you want to get your novel written on your own terms, or do you want to get your novel written?”
It’s important to remember that nothing lasts forever. Eventually, she will again be able to enjoy four-hour stretches of solitude for writing. But if that’s not feasible right now, and the creative work is how she makes meaning, it’s more important to loosen up on those ideals and develop skills that enable more spontaneous and flexible creativity.
It’s not terribly hard to write 250 words a day. With the exception of mothers with newborns, most of us can pull off 250 words without making a major time commitment or feeling like we’re neglecting our family. The four paragraphs you’re reading right now total exactly 250 words. If you wrote 250 words a day, you would have a full-length novel written in just over a year. Does that sound like a long time? It’s not. And if you don’t write those 250 words a day, the year will pass anyway, novel or no novel. Word by word!
This piece was reprinted from the last issue of the Creative Times, our monthly newsletter. Click here to subscribe!