Image by Radhika Bhagwat
Are you spending the majority of your time keeping up with business-related tasks rather than creating?
Are you lacking the passion you once felt for your business?
Is your creative time continually being pushed to the back burner?
If you answered ‘yes’ to the above questions, I’m guessing you’re feeling a bit stretched with all the things you need to be doing.
Growing a business is tough. For most of us, left-brained business growth activities begin to take over and right-brained creative activities begin to feel hurried and expected rather than free and relaxed like they should.
So if your business is drowning your creativity, I’ve got a solution that will dry you out and get those creative fires burning bright again.
You’re Trying To Do Too Much
You know it takes a lot of hard work to build a business. There are so many routine tasks you have to keep up with, like bookkeeping and marketing, but it’s also important to keep your passion front and center, always in your line of sight, so you don’t neglect the reason you started your business in the first place.
Yes, there’s never a lack of things to do if you’re trying to grow your business, but if you overwhelm yourself, the time you should be investing in your craft, your art, or your writing may become limited.
Healthy time management skills are important when it comes to being your own boss and growing a business. It’s important to keep in mind the fact that every new task you take on requires your time – which means your time will be taken away from something else.
You’ve Got Your Priorities Mixed Up
If you’re spending more time on marketing your products than actually making them, developing new products, or honing in on your creative skills, chances are you’ve got your priorities out-of-whack. Your products are what your business is built around you know. They need to be at the top of your ‘important’ list.
Yes, marketing is also a very important part of your business. You have to get your products in front of your ideal customer, but if your product isn’t in tip-top shape, then your marketing efforts will be in vain.
If you’ve put other business-related tasks at the top of your priority list, it’s time for some evaluation and rearranging.
The Solution: Plan for Creativity
Think about how much time you spend a week working on the actual products you sell. Now compare that to the amount of time you spend on other business-related tasks. Are you happy with that number?
If your answer is no, then you need to increase the time you spend on your craft by planning some creative time into your daily or weekly routine.
Now I know a lot of you may be thinking, “What! Plan for creative time? That’s too confining.”
Well, let me explain.
What you’re doing now… neglecting this time until you’re behind and you have to do it… that’s confining. That isn’t going to give you the freedom or the results you want in your business. Planning out creative time on the other hand is very freeing in the fact that this is your time to not worry about anything else, but to concentrate 100% on what you love to do.
So really it’s not as confining as you think. In a sense it’s very freeing.
Scheduling and Protecting Your Creative Time
Once you realize that you actually need to set aside time to create, you need to look over your current schedule – see where you can include this time. Do you need it every day? Do you need it once a week? Maybe twice a week?
When you decide how often you want it and for how long, you need to actually write it down so you don’t forget about it. You’re busy and things are easy to forget, but this is now a priority and you need to remember it.
Now that you have it scheduled, the difficult part is going to be protecting that time and not letting other things creep in and take it over. This is where determination, discipline and will-power come in.
We all have times where we’re not very motivated to do what we need to, but we can overcome that if we keep ourselves accountable.
How about including a weekly or monthly blog post about your new creative time? Talk about what you’re making, your ideas for new products, give a peek inside your studio or notebook, or share what having this time is teaching you. Your readers will love having an inside glimpse into your creative mind.
You could even try posting a full year’s calender in your studio and each day you complete your creative time you can make a mark on your calender to keep track of your progress. Reward yourself with a small treat for every month where you complete your goal. Once you get to the end of the year, celebrate by doing something special for yourself. Come on! You deserve it!
It may take some work at first, sticking with your creative time, especially if you’ve taken on too many other tasks that you’ve deemed ‘important’, but stick with it and over time it will become less like work. It will end up being something that you look forward to and your business will benefit from it immensely.
Long Story Short
You started a creative business, remember? You need time to be creative and if you’ve lost that time because of other tasks that have gotten in the way, it’s time to get your priorities back in line. Finding a time that works for you, scheduling it, and sticking to it can be very rewarding for you and your business – and that in itself can be one of the best things you do to help your business grow.
You and Your Creative Time
How do you get back to your creative space when too much ‘business’ has crept in?
What difference does it make to you personally when you carve out time for creativity
Have you noticed any business benefits from doing this?
About the Author: Meagan Visser is a creative business owner and coach who helps moms learn how to successfully start and grow a creative business around their families. She’s the creator of Creative Business Marketing 101 – a 7 day e-course designed to help creatives get their marketing back on track. Connect with her at MeaganVisser.com and on Facebook.