20 July, 2015

Creative Process Maps

Finding a Rhythm

I am trying to bring more rhythm to my life. I am working to work better not harder. I am trying to add structure so I have time to do the things I want to. It’s not easy when you are building several businesses at once and trying to be present in an ever busier social media environment.

It comes with the reality of taking what is before you seriously. I have said since I was three I wanted to be a writer, but have taken incremental steps to getting there. It is easy to get overwhelmed. When you are taking things “one step at a time” it is easy to lose the bigger picture.

If you are visual, a to do list can seem daunting. We are taught to break down larger tasks into smaller ones, to make our big goals a series of achievements. But what if the big goal is years away (like paying down debt) or it fluctuates (like building a business or losing weight)? If you are pursuing more than one goal (as many of us are) it is easy to lose sight of where you are.

Crossing something off a to do list can be satisfying, but it can be like crossing a rock on your way up the mountain. Look up and you feel like you have done nothing.

Enter the creative process maps.

What are Creative Process Maps?

I am a huge Made Vibrant fan. Caroline is one of the view people who’s emails I read every week. Her words often bring encouragement, and perspective.

She recently posted about creative process maps, a visual way to take even the most daunting task down to something simple. Keep it fun. Make it colorful. And let it be interactive.

Caroline used the idea of fitness. If she wanted to work out for thirty days straight, she made a “map” with thirty shapes. Numbered 1 – 30, she colored one off each day she worked out.

Image from Caroline

She also did the same thing for posting each week. Lara Casey does somewhat the same thing with her Tending List that is part of her PowerSheets.

My June/July Powesheets

It works well for repetitive tasks. It also helps with keeping the overall goal in mind.

My Attempt

I want to get into a more consistent writing habit. I want to move my stories along, not just re-read or edit. So I made a process map. It’s primitive (I am a writer not an artist) but it’s me.

Starting today I will attempt to write something new, at least an hour of focused time, for a month. Since I take the weekends off it will be a 20-day attempt.

Making it Yours

“Turning intentions into habits takes effort and will power, and if some silly drawing can make it even 1% easier to choose to stay committed each day, I think that’s worth it!” Caroline

What are you moving towards that seems overwhelming? It can be anything – paying off a loan, working out, finishing a project. What about something you want to stop doing – not drinking soda, spending time with your children that is technology free, not swearing, reading before you go to bed?

I challenge you to let your inner child out. Go buy some markers, create your own (or download) a creative map and start moving towards something amazing.

If you are feeling bold – let me know what you chose, I’d love to encourage you.

(If you are looking for a more organized process map, check out Amy’s website)

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© Amanda Lunday