Ideas to nurture your creative self: How an hour of your time can make a difference

The more you reinvent yourself, the more you become you. This is one of the ideas that resonated with me the most at the Adobe 99U Conference. For a few years now, I’ve been dying to attend this conference, which usually takes place every year in New York City. In 2020, though, organizers adapted all keynotes, master classes and workshops in a digital format.

We’re still getting through the pandemic, but it hasn’t extinguished our desire to lead a creative life. In uncertain times, redefining ourselves is the best way to find solutions to our challenges at personal and professional levels.

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The art of blogging is still alive

Some time ago, I read somewhere that blogs were dead. Online communication has mutated in such way that this kind of platform is no longer relevant. At least not as relevant as it “used to be.”

I disagree with that idea. Blogs are still very much alive. They’re the window to a person’s mind and creative crafts. It’s a platform where someone can introduce themselves to the online world without any editorial guidelines.

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Finding the light in times of darkness

The past few months have been really challenging for the world. At a personal level, the shock of living in times of a pandemic has impacted me in ways I never imagined.

As confinement began, it became clear to me that it’d be important to take breaks from information to protect my mental health. It was overwhelming to read so many articles related to economies collapsing, layoffs and increasing number of of COVID cases.

I remember reading a headline that suggested that the world would never be the same again. It was scary to think about that possibility. Nowadays, the term “new normal” starts to be more common. It’s difficult to imagine how the aftermath is going to look like for each one of us. Even when COVID goes away, the collateral damage will still be around in our personal lives.

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Journals for thoughts, journals for life

Sometimes, your thoughts can’t stay in your mind all the time.

Sometimes, it’s a good idea to talk to someone you trust. We all need to rant from time to time to get rid of all the things we’ve kept to ourselves.

Other times, thoughts are so private that it’s hard to share them with someone or in a blog. That’s when journals come to the rescue. I’ve been journaling for 23 years, and even when it seems that I’ve lost the habit of composing my private notes, I retake it, and my mind finds peace again.

There’s a place where the world can’t reach you and judge you: the pages of a journal. I find that introspection is therapy for the soul. When you write down your emotions and thoughts as you feel them or as you mean them, you create a new self. You get rid of all mental blocks and think clearly.

You’ll be surprised of all the answers you can find in your own words. You can be as bold as you like, and no one will be offended.

If you manage to maintain this habit for years, it’s useful to read past entries from time to time to remind yourself how you overcame tough situations. You can also remind yourself what things made you happy at a certain point and retake them.

What do you think?

 

Opinions that matter

The other day, I came across this post on Twitter:

This short video contains a piece of advice that is truly thought-provoking. Whose opinions really matter to you? The idea of making a list is brand new to me. I have never considered an initiative like this, and now I see great value in it.

There’s always a small group of people you trust. Whenever you are working on new ideas, you ask them what they think, and you find their feedback useful. You respect them, and they respect you. There’s a reason why their opinions matter.

In a digital world, where anyone can criticize your work mercilessly, you have to learn who to listen to. Not all opinions matter. It’s unfair to let trolls influence your every move and your every thought.

Those whom you trust are the ones that can offer you solid comments. You know you can only expect honesty from them. Listen to them and nurture meaningful conversations.

If you were to start that list right now, how many names would there be on it?

New Year: Planning your progress

The beginning of a new year is one of my favourite seasons. Everybody is genuinely trying to be a better version of themselves. I think this is a noble cause. We can affect our environment a little bit by bringing some positives vibes.

At the same time, we wonder how long we’ll be able to maintain our goals and turn them into a reality. While it’s a long journey that requires a lot of energy, I recommend focusing on solutions rather than resolutions to obtain realistic results.

Here’s a few more thoughts and my list of personal objectives for 2020.

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First drafts are for your eyes only

For some reason, the other day I woke up with this song playing in my head:

This song reminds me of my childhood. My parents tuned in the radio quiet often, and this song would be playing. Back then, I didn’t pay attention to the lyrics, but now I can really feel it has a powerful message.

Sing a song (…) don’t worry if it’s not good enough for anyone else to hear. Just sing. Sing a song.

I feel the same thing happens when writing. You compose a story, and then you wonder if it’s good enough. However, the first draft is for your eyes only. Nobody else is reading it or judging you. All you need to do is write and edit later on.

As long as it all comes from the heart, the next improvements will follow. That’s what the song says to me. What does it say to you?