This summer I took a leap of faith and decided to travel to Germany and find a new day job instead of staying in Utah because I couldn’t get the time off approved at my old job. What I have learned so far ? When you want to make progress on your creative journey, you need to clear your path of obstacles that are within your power to address
Since coming here to Berlin I have noticed a giant surge in creativity and inspiration from all of the new influences and scenery. I also noticed that having no job hanging over my head (but also little financial stress) has granted a freedom I could only dream of the last two years. This really underscores the importance of saving money as an artist– there is no better way to open up options than having your own resources to work with. In this way I would say that financial stress and untenable working situations can equally become creative obstacles and one must achieve the right balance to keep moving forward. Furthermore, the “administrative” task of life, paperwork, bills, taxes, etc., are better to take care of right away before they can come together to create bigger problems.
To put it simply, it is easier to be creative and expressive when one isn’t burdened down with unnecessary obligations. Unfortunately, for many of us this ideal seems so far away and we find it hard to see the way out. If this sounds like you, I would like to share my experience of a system that has worked for me in the past.
1. Make a list of tasks to complete in order of priority.
- Make sure you address the most important tasks first.
- It is better to bring one task to completion than to leave three things half-finished.
2. Determine how much time you can dedicate to addressing the items on the list.
- Set aside as much time to complete these things as possible, but don’t forget to leave time for yourself as well.
- If a task involves researching researching something like jobs or schools, it is really easy to get burned out. Try getting some information and then taking time to digest it — slow and steady is the key.
3. Once you have completed a task, reevaluate the priorities and adjust the order if necessary.
- Sometimes you will finish a task quicker than expected, when that happens use the momentum to your advantage!
- Realize some things will take more time than others, if you have done everything possible on your end and are just waiting on another party, move onto the next task or to one that is small enough to complete without stressing you out while you wait.
4. When you run into delays, complications, or dead ends reach out for help!
- If you have family and friends around don’t be afraid to ask for help from those who might have experience with what you’re working on.
- When you don’t have people to ask for help, turn to the internet for problems big and small (recently a woman even gave birth with the help of YouTube! )
I hope this will help someone who felt like I did two years ago and would love to hear any other ideas for taking care of life stuff that has worked for you.
Thanks for reading and good luck on your journey!