I started my 30-day "creative block" of waking up at 6AM every morning (weekends included) to work on creative stuff. I might write, read, code or work on a side project. But I'll always try to write for at least 5 minutes.
It's now been 8 days since I started waking up at 6AM to do creative stuff. This weekend I spent it a bit differently. The covid-19 lockdown in Puerto Rico was eased for the first time since March 15th. People are now allowed outdoors to do sports like running, surfing, and others. A group of friends and I decided to go surfing to the west coast of the island and catch one of the last swells of the season. It felt great to interact with nature for the first time in so long.
But let's get back to today's topic: clarity. When you do something for an extended period of time (say a week) you train your mind to focus on the task at hand. Your mind begins to understand what this time means and everything else just falls in the background. I've chosen this morning time for quietness and clarity. When the world begins humming, you lose control and get sucked into whatever important topics the world needs from you that day; it's a needy place. Finding time to isolate yourself is as important as a good night's sleep in my opinion.
I believe that the best creative work is done in isolation. When you're alone working on something, you get to speak freely with your mind and decide what's important to you at that moment. No external pressures or opinions.
My "creative block" process is very simple. I wake up, make coffee (amazing stuff from George Howell) then sit down, open my laptop and clear up my personal email. Then I open up Notion and pull up a blank page on a folder called "Meditations" inspired by so called Marcus Aurelius' Meditations book. I write down the day's date and I begin writing. If the writing is "good enough", then I move onto my blog and copy the scribblings into a first draft. Once I've written what flowed that morning, then I move onto the other projects. I decide later if I'll publish my writing or not.
(I should probably publish more of the stuff I write rather than keeping it to myself but I'd like to find the cadence of writing before doing that)
After a week doing this I've decided the right strategy for me is to focus on just two things during the morning. After all, it's only about ~2 hours before the day starts. I first write and then I work on whatever project I have on my pipeline of ideas. The purpose is to create.
Some say that the best way to invent the future is to live in it and then work backwards to create it. So that's exactly how I'm spending my time building projects. There is no monetary incentive, just the joy of building something I'd like to see in the world.
The projects I'm working on, and the future ones, are all relatively simple. The one I'm working on this week should be finished in 2 days at most, and that's probably overdoing it for the first version. It's an idea that came to me when the lockdown started. I'll leave the whole story for later, but it's related to remote work. Once I finish that, I'll move on to the next project.
In 30 days I should be able to do the following: 4 weeks of writing (on my journal or here) which generates about 28 different journaling/blog entries and at least 4 different projects. I did start the first project a bit late as I had no idea what to do, so it'll be more like 3 different projects. But hey, maybe I extend this 30-day creative block to 60 days?
At the end of the day, I'm looking for time to think more clearly and this is my way of doing it.
ps: I changed the 30-day "challenge" to 30-day "creative block".