Making the Time: Tips for Artists on Time Management

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Life has a way of shifting priorities in our schedules and creating a barrier between the things we love to do most. Sound familiar? Whether it is writing, painting, dancing, or cooking those recipes we have pinned on Pinterest and sworn we’d make at some point, the arts in our lives tend to be at the bottom of the “to-do list” until we have our free time back. Like every task in our bustling schedules, time for art can be managed. Here are 7 tips on how we can make the time for the artist inside of us.

1. Wake up earlier
You know the cliché saying “early bird gets the worm?” The truth behind it stands strong. The earlier we arise the more productive time we create and assign. If we were to get up an hour earlier every morning, we will have gained 15 days in one year. Not a morning person? That’s okay! That extra time can get you into your routine earlier and open up more time for your afternoon and evening highlight hours.

2. Set a time
Making a scheduled time in your day or week for art heightens the likelihood of it becoming a reality. Whether it is a half hour or hour, designating that time in your day for that activity instantly shifts your priorities.

3. Have a designated space for art
Develop a space for art wherever you find fitting. Doing so will boost your motivation to take on tip #2. Having a space that you can store all your tools and supplies is more encouraging and eliminates the efforts of gathering all supplies to get started for next time.

4. Keep a journal or art pad with you/by your bed
Get those creative juices flowing! As artists, we know that inspiration can hit us at any moment, a dream, the people we interact with, a song, or a view. Use those inspirational moments and jot down a few words or sketch a new idea. Having a medium to capture those ideas with can allow your designated art hour to flow smoother.

5. Identify distractions (computer, phone, TV)
My common time-sucker is the TV and it can be difficult to get anything done when it is on. What is yours? Think about what elements currently have your time? Too much social-media? Surfing the web? Texting your buds till the break of dawn? Identification is one step closer to managing your time better.

6. Block- out party!
Now that you have identified your distraction, shut it off! Turn off those phones and TVs and whatever it may be. Take yourself out of the distraction and you will notice the difference in productivity.

7. Find your Zen
What helps you focus? Now that those elements of distraction are gone, “artists block” often kicks in and makes it difficult to move forward in your creative venture. Every artist has their own technique for inspiration and focus, such as white noise, music, instrumentals, or perhaps complete silence. Experiment in your art space with different levels in sound, temperature, light intensity, etc. to make your time for art the most efficient on a time-budget.