Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Discovering your creativity cycles

For the fist two months of the year, each Sunday I scribbled a note on my planner about how the week had been. I named my weeks to discover a pattern.
Let´s have a look:
  1. Great start
  2. Got even better
  3. I forgot where I was going
  4. La la la laaaaaa
  5. I tried again
  6. Seriously
  7. I do some other life stuff
  8. Shiny object (back to school organization / shopping) distracts me
See it? Yes, I saw it too. Two weeks of good work, two weeks running around like a headless chicken distracted by the  "must do this before ...."s.

 If you haven´t recognized your pattern yet, go back to your old planners and diaries. All the information you need is there and knowing your Modus Operandi will allow you to respect and take advantage of your energy and focus cycles.

This is what I have discovered so far about mine based on the past three years notes.
33 years worth of old planners. Yes, I am a memory keeper :D
  • I work better with a plan and a schedule
  • Home and work need separate plans even if they intersect
  • 6 weeks is the best time frame for "Big" projects
  • I have 2 weeks of creative focus and 2 weeks of fill in work per month

Tell me: What is your pattern?

Next Wednesday: planners and diaries!

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misteejay said...

The 'post-Christmas' period at work is always hectic and as a result I have to take myself away to get any crafting done because otherwise I just get home and want to vegetate. I know that if I book myself onto a few classes with friends it gives me the boost to actually be creative.

Great post Paula - your "laaala" week made me smile.

Toni xx

Sky Nealon said...

Hi Paula,

Really great post here, and it's my first time here.

You certainly put a smile on my face when you mentioned 'I forgot where I was going", nowadays there's so much distraction going on, it hard to sometimes stay focused on the task at hand.

I must admit I'm not very good with keeping diaries or planners, so when I saw the photo of 33 years worth of old planners, I was like wooooah.

My pattern tends to be work a few days, then take a few days off, repeat again. I also find that working with music in the background tends to help increase creativity levels.

Looking forward to your next post

Savory Experiments said...

Me too! When I don't have an actual schedule my life is just a series of sticky notes that make no sense. I feel anxious and never like I am "up to date".

Waiwai Leung said...

A good reminder for me! Smiling at your "I forgot where I was going"!

Grove Walker said...

What a good way to track your creativity. I will give this a try as my creativity is very unpredictable

Bonnie Gean said...

I make a weekly schedule and stick to it as best as I can. :)

That's about it as far as a pattern goes for me.

Hey... whatever works, right?

Paula - Buenos Aires said...

You really recognize your cycle Toni and that makes you find an alternative that works for you. Wise woman.

Welcome Sky. :) It is such a noisy world, distractions are everywhere. I´m a list maker and memory keeper by nature so having all that comes naturally. :D I use music for creative work too and interviews for manual work like house chores.

We are both planners for structure then. I couldn´t find your name but great recipies at your G+ Savory Experiments.

Sometimes I get distracted for weeks Waiwai! Totally off track.

You will find either cycles or triggers Grove Walker. Going with the flow, and not beating us up when it is just not there, will make the work more joyful.

The good point about respecting a low energy cycle is not stressing it out Bonnie. Show up, head down and do the work. Following a schedule as you do will guarantee nothing is lost along the wway. Planning big things for high energy moments will take you further along.

Liliana Marsden said...

Great post, and I after I finish this comment I am going to start recording because really you've given me a great idea.

Yes, I am trying to do the little things I keep leaving as they seem to be distracting as subconsciously I seem to keep them hanging over me.

Again, great post.

Super Affiliate Kaz said...

Each and every Saturday morning is my day to write out the plan for the next week. Getting work done, getting shopping done, getting everything done and it's all gone to dust by Tuesday morning. Thank you for reminding me I'm normal and thank you for reminding me why I need to stay focused - I'm sure I'll get more done when I stick to the plan :)

Anne Butera said...

Hi, Paula, Nice to have the time to catch up with your blog.

You're right about being able to figure out your creative cycles. They're always there.

Thanks for the inspiration.

Paula - Buenos Aires said...

I know what you mean Liliana. We get more tired by what we haven´t done than by what we have. :D Glad to know this post inspired you into action! Wonder what you are up to now. I´ll keep an eye on your site. :)

Kaz, we might loose track but the plan is there to bring us back into focus. :)

Anne! Good to see you girl! Thanks for the visit. :)

Rea Alducente said...

I love planners and diaries. I started using them in high school and I had one every year. Like you, I also love planning and organizing.. :) You have 33 years worth, that's just amazing!

Michelle Nahom said...

I have to say I am really bad with planners and schedules and I really do need them. I fly by the seat of my pants way too much. This is a good reminder to sit down and see if I can get myself organized that way. Thanks for linking up with us at LOBS!

Paula - Buenos Aires said...

Rea, just as I´m a list maker I´m also a memory keeper. :D

I would never had guessed Michelle! YOur work looks so organized. :)


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