When we give ourselves permission to enjoy what makes our hearts sing and time fly we experience our Creative Oasis. You've heard me say this before but we can all use a gentle reminder from time to time, right?
Because our Creative Oasis is unique to each of us and because there are so many fabulous, fun, fulfilling experiences out there waiting to be explored, I decided to write a free-form list poem of some favorite Creative Oasis moments to share as examples and before I knew it I'd written a full-blown manifesto! (Click here to download your free printable copy.)
Of course this list contains only a smattering of the oodles of experiences out there just waiting for you to discover, revisit, explore and savor...but it's a good start.
Here are five quick and easy steps to help you use my new Creative Oasis Manifesto to spark some creative joy of your own (sooner than later I hope!):
#1 ~ Read the manifesto aloud with a blank piece of paper or your journal open to a new page. Each time you come to a word or phrase that gives you a tingly, energized feeling, makes you smile or sets you to day dreaming about doing that very thing, jot it down. Our body is like our own personal polygraph machine. If we pay attention to the signals it sends us (warm fuzzy feelings, sly smiles, jazzy jitters and what have you) we're sure to stay on the right track!
#2 ~ Next, read over the list you've written. Quickly and intuitively (without overthinking) put a star next to your three favorites.
#3 ~ For each starred moment ask yourself: "What are three super small steps I can take to enjoy this Creative Oasis moment?" Write those down too. You may feel compelled to doodle hearts, stars, moons and smiley faces all around your steps. If so, my professional opinion is to break out the colored pencils and go for it!
#4 ~ Each day for the coming week, you get to choose one of your super small steps to enjoy! Repeat as time allows throughout the day and week.
# 5 ~ To make getting to your small steps even easier why not add them to your calendar or day planner? This really helps give your creativity priority just like everything else on your to-do list.
In fact, I'm going to radically suggest you put your creative small steps at the very top of your to-do list! That's right, you heard me. Puttering in the garden trumps laundry. Felting for a few minutes comes before your meeting. Pulling images for a collage has priority over making dinner. (We're only talking about 5 to 10 minutes here, so I feel safe in saying no one will starve as a result.)
#6 ~ Also, what if you set a timer for just 5 to 10 minutes to lower the pressure and help you begin?Another benefit of practicing small bursts of creative joy throughout the day is it helps us practice getting to our Creative Oasis more often rather than waiting for those big chunks of free time that rarely, if ever, come our way! If you have time to do more ~ Great! If not, no worries. At the very least, you know you'll be enjoying a few minutes of Creative Oasis time most days.
If you have trouble breaking down your Creative Oasis moments into small, doable steps, please drop me a line in the comments below and I'll be happy to lend a hand.
Until next time, here's to gentle reminders, radical suggestions and the Creative Oasis Manifesto!