Tag: Time out

Preparing for the summer break

The festive break and summer holidays are looming large as we move into mid-December and January.  It is a very social time with lots of parties, end of year celebrations, family gatherings at Christmas or Hanukah or New Year.  It’s great to celebrate the end of the year with your friends and family and it can be as busy as you allow.  And whilst it can be exhilarating it can also impact on your regular creative routine, processes and productivity.

Summer breaks are a great opportunity to have that well-earned rest and put your feet up.  Resting is important as it lets you clear your brain, break with regular routines, do different things and engage with the world to find new inspiration for your creative endeavours.  Often it can be a chance to catch up on sleep or to do something physical.

So why not prepare and give yourself permission to stop and enjoy all you get up to.  Eradicate the guilt before it begins and when the break is over you can get back on track with your work.

Here are some tips to help you make the most your summer break.

  Set some creative goals and tasks for your first couple of weeks back at your desk, or in your studio, and outline what you want to achieve during this time.  It could be things like setting up your calendar and scheduling your creative milestones, or setting your goals for the entire year.  Make it fun so you enter the year looking forward to creating.

  Have your creative journal with you so when ideas arise you can record them.  That way you will have some new ideas to work on and put into play when you get back to you studio or desk.

  Remember to have things to hand that will relax, stimulate and inspire you – such as books, podcasts, DVD’s and TV series, your friends.  Things that will take you totally away from your work and enable you to unwind and return refreshed in the New Year.

  Set aside some time out for reflection.  Review your creative process – what is working well, what isn’t, where are the opportunities for improvement or change, what would you like to do differently in the coming year.  Look back and acknowledge all you have learnt and achieved over the last 12 months.

  Make time to get physical – swim, hike, run, dance, walk, play tennis, rock climb – whatever takes your fancy.  Just move and rejoice in your body.  It has supported you to get this far.

  Celebrate your success and uniqueness.  Pause, congratulate yourself and express gratitude for all you have created.  It takes courage to express your creativity and share it with the world.

  Spend the festive season with people who have supported you over the year – either in person or virtually.  They will enjoy seeing you away from your work, relaxing and having fun.  But do remove yourself from any family or friendship tensions if they arise – and they may at this busy time.  If you need some guidance on how to handle these tensions please see my counsellor colleague Reed Everingham’s blog.

Whatever you do – ENJOY IT ALL.  And don’t forget the sun block.  Best wishes for the festive season and the New Year.

Coaching can assist you to manage your creative life.  Please get in touch if you would like to explore the ideas above in more detail.