(I wrote this on Saturday but Sent it out on Sunday. Don’t fear the incorrect day of the week references)
I woke up on this glorious Saturday morning with a list of things that I “should” get done. I had to write this newsletter, I had multiple freelance projects that I’ve fallen behind on and needed to get done, a blog post to write and publish, along with typical weekend housework and chores to complete.
It’s 8:30PM and I did none of those
Instead, I was struck with a fresh wave of inspiration and spent the whole day working on a brand new, completely separate project.
And it was fun…I had a blast.
It got me thinking about how work can morph into play, play can morph into work, and how thin the divide can actually be between the two. For me, this illustration and design stuff started out as something I did solely for myself for fun and pleasure. For the most part, it still is, but I’m beginning to see a new side to it as people have started to pay me real, non-Monopoly dollars to create things for them.
At first I was blown away by the concept. “I get paid to do what I previously did for fun?” But the more I did it, the more of an obligation it became. I still love to create and I think it’s the coolest, most freaky thing in the world that I get paid for it sometimes. I’ve just noticed that once I systemize the way in which I create, after a while it gets hard to get as excited about it as I used to.
I started to think about how this relates to my personal creation schedule (my blog and this newsletter). I missed a few days blogging this month and I didn’t send out a newsletter last week because it felt like an obligation to produce something even though I had nothing to say. I realized with my blog that I was just saying the same thing over and over again, just because I expected myself to write a post everyday and that’s not the type of creation that I want to do.
That being said, I think an expectation for daily creation and daily publishing is incredibly healthy and has helped me immensely so far in just these last 2 months.
But you need to be allowed to have some wiggle room.
I wrote last week about moving the bar forward - taking clear steps towards your goals while allowing yourself to explore the different ways in which you’re able to take those steps.
For me, my goal is to take action everyday (create and publish). I’ve realized that this action can come in a lot of different forms. Maybe it’s writing a blog post, maybe it’s creating an illustration, or maybe it’s writing a twitter thread. When I try to systemize this creation, it might inspire me for a couple day, but then I just feel stuck with the same cookie cutter mold of creation every single day.
I need to allow myself to think outside of the box and right now, that’s allowing myself to follow different creative pursuits in whatever direction they call me on that particular day. What’s important is that I’m taking action. I’m not taking days off from creating, I’m just creating something a little bit different everyday.
That’s why I’m okay with the way that I spent my Saturday. I’ll get all that stuff that I NEED to get done tomorrow, that’s what deadlines are for right?
My friend Janis recently posted this thread on the evolution of his design style and paid tribute to all the different “ingredients” that have gone into it.
I freaking love this concept.
It got me thinking about all the different ingredients that go into my own authentic style and it blows my mind how diverse life can really be.
Take the concept I talked about in the first half of this newsletter for example. I’m finding out that that serendipitous, unpredictable concept is a vital ingredient in my day to day style, but so are a lot of things that seemingly oppose that idea completely: discipline, consistency, and organization.
Life isn’t a single ingredient.
You don’t pick one concept and then base every decision/action off that one idea. It’s a combination of MILLIONS of different ideas and philosophies that you develop along the journey. The best thing you can do is grab a recipe and go all Ratatouille on whatever ingredients you have available.
Here’s a link to some of my recent blog posts…
To top it all off, at the end of these newsletters I like to share my favorite illustration or design project I completed form the previous week.
This week my wife asked me to whip something up to announce some (little) big news we have to share…
Baby Greenman coming August 2021!
I hope you all have a wonderful week!