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The truth is, 2020 lockdowns, isolation, uncertainty, and anxiety came to challenge my creative impulses. With all the time in the world at my disposal, barely any action was taken to fan my creative flames after the first few months, By the end, a final exhausting push made me cross the finish line.The truth is that no matter how vivid the flames of creativity are burning in your heart, desire is not enough, the work of fanning is a daily struggle for everyone. Tweet Me
I must admit, 2020 was “creative” in many other ways. The problem, as always, was not coming up with new exciting ideas or projects to pour my heart into, it was the follow-through. As days turned to weeks, and weeks turned to months, I found myself buried on a pile of beginnings…
Not every Creative Flame is created equal
There are creative flames that lit up quickly and brightly. There’s just enough time to catch them and shape them into their true form and final iteration; a story, a book, a design, a painting, a song.
In reality, those flames are rare. Much more common are the subtle, subdued, and inconsistent flames that pepper the everyday creative life. The flames you feel burning inside you, some days melting your heart with passion and expectation, and other days barely even felt.
The quiet creative flames are the ones you need to fan. Those require your care and attention, your consistent action and will power. The satisfaction is even greater when you feel those flames igniting new ideas and filling you with a deep sense of purpose because the reward is the work itself, and the knowledge that you did not give up. And so you can do it again.
Fanning your creative flames in 2021
You may already have a few creative flames left from a year of unforeseen challenges to your creativity. You may still carry around the ashes of projects that once filled you with joy, briefly sparked with untapped possibility, yet dimmed down and died away.
2021 may be the year they rise up like a phoenix. This may mean a new iteration, a new attempt at failure, or success. Be brave and get close to the fire. Take your time to look and see if you can find your “why” within the flames. If it’s still there, start fanning!
- Pick the project that feels easiest to divide and conquer
- Reconnect with the idea or project, don’t rush all in, linger in the flames
- Schedule creative time around the hearth, just to get used to its warmth
- Set some milestones or check-in points for the coming weeks or months
- Share it with the collective and gain accountability
My current creative flames in no particular order:
- This creative blog and the web of profiles, pages, and groups I had created around them, and which have gone un-fanned for the better part of a year.
- A fictional project and the next self-published book in my collection; a story I’ve been keeping in the back-burner since the publication of my last novella.
Keep me accountable! Ask me about these projects over on Fbk 😉