Welcome to Week 13 of my adventure of following the Start Up Version of the Grow Your Business Marketing Plan + Calendar. In my posts, I talk about my voyage down the road of self-employment as a VMA, my achievements and roadblocks along the way, and I include a weekly recap at the bottom of each entry.
I’ve been doing a lot of writing lately. I’ve been writing content for websites, articles, newsletters, and press releases. And I love it.
What a great feeling to produce a finished product that really rocks, especially when it took some actual thinking to get there. I love that feeling of accomplishment.
But writing sure does require a lot of creative juice.
I’ve noticed lately that the more writing I do, the more aware I am of my creative resources—as abundant, or drained as they may be at the time. I know there’s a big creative audience out there at the Marketing Mix. I have a lot of respect for people who create, (I’m awed by artists, designers, song writers, novelists, and anyone who produces something from nothing) and I’ve always wondered, how do creators stay…well, creative?
I’m trying to figure out how to keep my writing juices flowing. Here’s what I’ve noticed helps me so far:
- Music. WFUV is my favorite radio station in the world. I stream it all day long (and I’m an active member). I get to hear traffic and weather in New York, NPR news, and listen to my favorite kind of music. Sometimes I sing along. Having it play in the background freshens up my day and keeps me in the moment.
- Varying tasks. If I work on the same thing for too long, it stops getting better. It just stops. I find that if I jump from one thing to another, it helps to keep things flowing. Yes, I have 10 unfinished pieces of writing on my desktop, but it’s better than one lingering piece that sucks.
- Working in the morning. If I know I have lots of “creative work” to do, I get up extra early. Seems my brain works better. Somewhere around 4pm it all gets fuzzy. I find myself losing my vocabulary and writing the same sentences over and over, and oh yes, making mistakes. I wonder if this makes me a morning person after all?
- Just doing it. Worrying, stress, and deadlines are definitely detrimental to creativity. The opposite of worrying, being stressed, and thinking about impending deadlines is, in fact, just doing it. I struggle sometimes, but when I “just do it,” I end up with less of a headache. Also, I’ve noticed that being creative doesn’t agree with my inner procrastinator.
- Go-Go mode. Lately I’ve started playing a little game called “get as much done as possible in the shortest amount of time.” This is where I write as much as I can, to at least get things started. The goal of this game is mostly to calm my mind down. When I can say I’ve at least started things, it keeps the hugeness of an untouched project from hanging over my head.
How do you stay creative—what are your tricks? Are there new ways to be more creative more of the time? Ways to pull out great creative work on a deadline?
Week 13 Recap: Wow, 13 weeks of the Grow Your Business Marketing Plan—and I’m still doing it. Hurray! How is your marketing going? This week, I decided what my “promo materials” are going to be. I’m making a package to send to web designers offering my services and rates. It will be a PDF that can be e-mailed or printed out. What will your promo piece be?