Research and choose, then adjust course as needed. I have found that is the best way to go. It is too easy to get caught in an endless research loop and never get beyond it to actually making a decision. Letting time pass with no course of action being put in motion. Many decisions are based on things that are finite, like vacation lodgings or restaurants, such decisions are not as weighty as buying a house or moving across the world. And even those can be undone given opportunity or the right set of circumstances. Missing the window of opportunity by dithering over the research can delay or add a layer of difficulty to your plans. I have been guilty of getting too deeply into the weeds of research, trying to find the perfect option to pursue to insure the perfect outcome. Which we all know is an impossible outcome to chase. Once I catch myself checking one more source or review, I stop and weigh what I have, the time being spent, and the actual importance of the plan. The I take a breath and make the decision, whether it is a yes or no.
Time is racing by me, I blink and the day is gone. I blink again and the month is half over. I wonder “Am I making progress?”, it can be hard to tell with so few events to differentiate the weeks. I have reached and passed my 60/100 mark, and am in that stretch where it is feeling like a bit of a slog to make something fresh every day. But I manage to get in the flow and do it, and generally like what I have made. Outside of creating these daily artist trading cards I find it harder to see progress. Work is work, chores are chores, and errands are errands. But spring is here and I can see progress in the garden, and that soothes me.
The halfway mark, which seems impossible, how can that many days have passed? Time still has that slippery quality which has persisted since March of 2020. I am aware that days are passing, yet they seem to add up to nothing in particular. There are few notable occasions with which to mark time. Thursday feels like Friday, Wednesday feels like Tuesday. The blameless sameness I guess it could be called. Here it is early April, yet I can call little of March beyond the routine of work, and even that has no specific days of mention I can recall unless I try really hard. It is good that I undertook the 100 day project so as to at least have something that is new each day even if small. At the end there will be tangible proof that I did something out of the ordinary each day.
As it is April, National Poetry Month, I am enjoying the creative efforts of my poet friends. My own poetry is in a lull right now, I guess I am in gathering mode for future writing. One friend writes prolifically, and asks for titles so as to tailor write poems to challenge himself. They cover the gamut as the titles come from people of all walks, in various situations and moods. I have always enjoyed poetry, and still have many of my childhood poetry books and the poems I scribbled, they are truly awful yet sweet in their childlike way.
As I head into these final 50 days, I am hoping to continue expanding my skills and curiosity to create so really great ATCs. Then I will have 100 of them to do something with, just what I am going to do I am not sure yet! I will likely still feel slightly unmoored, but I know other will feel the same way.
Having started #the100dayproject I mean to keep my momentum up. I certainly should be able to find 5-10 a day to create an artist trading card. Time can be slippery though as unexpected demands arise or lethargy gets a foothold. To try and prevent the upset of either I am prepping papers so I can get right to the creating. Being on top of that will be key to creating anything made on work days.
The cool thing about the 100 day project is that it can be painting, drawing, quilting, writing, pretty much any creative endeavor. 100 days will end right around the end of May, nearly the doorway of summer. Hard to believe on this 11degree morning. How quickly the seasons actually pass in our human lives while we are busy with the minutiae of daily life.
“Keep learning” is advice mentioned regularly, and good advice it is. From simple things like taking a new route on the way to or from work, cook a new dish, or listen to different music. To more involved ones like learn a new language, take a course, or tackle a new skill. Any one of them can shakes up the cemented pathways in your brain and open up all sorts of new and potentially amazing possibilities. Which then lead to more! The best part is that it is all up to you to take that first step and try something new. It doesn’t have to be grand and expensive, it can be as simple as a daily walk through a different neighborhood and grow from there. Start today, engage a friend or two, write it down and tape that first intention to your mirror. Just give it a go!
Here we are, at the very final hours of the year. 2021 will soon be behind us. We will enter the new year with 365 days of unknowns to be dealt with. Throughout the year there will be all the usual ups and downs, plus delights and sorrows which will catch us off guard. I wish all of you a year filled with more ups and delights, and lots of laughter and success to offset the downs and sorrows. Happy New Year!