I’m so excited for our guest post from Samantha Dorn, aka Aqua Paisley Studio from Australia. I am so smitten with her style! Samantha is so inspiring – she has some beautiful quilts and patterns and even more beautiful thoughts to share.
Thanks Amy for letting me visit today with your readers. Hello everyone! Today I want to share with you some thoughts on motivation!
Let’s be honest – it’s hard to be consistently motivated, even when it comes to doing things you love.
No matter who you are and what project you are focused on, there will be days when you just don’t feel up to the task at hand.
Life takes unexpected turns, energy levels wane, stress overwhelms, or boredom simply sets in. These ‘off days’ are experienced by us all, and that’s why it is important to have a strategy in place to ensure these days don’t become all consuming.
What to Do When Motivation Fades
The first thing to remember and embrace is that you are your own creative boss.
If we imagined our creative world to be within the realm of Oz, then we, as the mental energy behind our creativity, are in fact the wizard. As the wizard, we can choose what it is we believe about our current motivation. If we believe we are too tired to create, then we will be. If we believe our work is no good, then that will be true. And more importantly, if we believe our work to be of value, then it will be.
It is what we believe about ourselves that matters most. Be positive about your creative practice!
Celebrate Showing Up
The next step is to set aside regular time to create, and commit to it.
While simply showing up on its own is unlikely to motivate a person to create, it is an important piece of the puzzle. By regularly showing up and initiating the creative process you are forming a habit that will more likely lead to success.
Have the courage to show up even if you don’t have a plan, or can’t find your flow. And, don’t be disheartened if your creative work isn’t what you set out to create.
Creativity rarely evolves in a predictable way. But, the act of creating nurtures creativity. And showing up consistently, over and over again is what ultimately triggers results.
Work Your System
Once you dedicate yourself to showing up, the next step is to develop habits as part of your creative practice.
Rituals or routines make it easier to focus on your task and get to work. This is not meant to be something complicated or time consuming, but rather a set of actions that will help build the momentum needed to begin.
You should consider these actions your pre-game warm up – they are essential to your creative health and wellbeing.
It could be something as simple as getting yourself a drink and clearing stray items off your cutting mat. No matter what the actions might be, the goal each time you show up is to do those routine things that will start your creative practice, and then see where those actions take you.
Eventually the aim is to create a pattern that consistently kickstarts the creative habit and initiates the momentum that leads to motivation.
Small Victories = Big Results
This year I have really witnessed the power of small wins. I have become more aware of how motivation only comes AFTER the fact, and how small wins generate the momentum that ultimately results in true motivation.
It is success that creates more success.
The key thing to remember here is to focus on the many steps involved in an end goal, one small step at a time.
We so often rush between one step and the next, or one project and the next without taking the time to appreciate our accomplishments. Ultimately this behaviour can become exhausting and demotivating.
Celebrate each time you achieve a milestone. Pause to recognise your progress and appreciate what you have accomplished. By recognising these small victories, you are reinforcing positive habits and adding much needed ‘funds’ to your bank of motivation.
Mini Quilt Motivation
When I’m truly feeling out of sync with my creativity, I have found the one surefire way to kickstart my motivation is to make a mini quilt.
A mini quilt is something you can finish within a short period of time, and it provides almost immediate positive reinforcement.
The successful energy you feel for accomplishing something so quickly can be its own reward, but it can also be a catalyst to encourage you to tackle larger and more difficult projects.
It is the epitome of the idea, ‘small victories = big results’!
If you’re struggling to find your sewjo, then consider making a fun mini quilt to get your creativity flowing!
For this week only, you can purchase any pattern in my shop and receive a 20% discount using the coupon code DIARY20. Including, the brand new Practical Magic Mini, which was inspired by this blog post 🙂.
Please come visit me over on my blog www.aquapaisleystudio.com where I share more of my creative journey and inspiration!
Thank you SO much, Samantha! Be sure to check out Samantha’s past guest post, How to Spark Your Creativity for some really fun, inspiring ideas for getting your creative mojo going!