Rather than complaining that we have no time to paint, we should be making time to paint. I hold up my hand here. I am always saying I don’t have enough time to paint.
Making time to paint is actually just a matter of mastering two aspects of life: better time management and dealing with the fear of messing up a painting. So what can we do about it?
Here are a few ideas that might help with making time to paint.
- Don’t sweat it if you mess up a painting. The most important thing you can do is just turn up and put brush to paper. In fact, paint for the bin – just paint for the joy of putting colour on paper.
- Don’t wait until you have a large amount of time available. If you keep waiting, it will never happen. Even if you can carve out 10 minutes a day, dedicate it to painting. That way it will happen.
- To that end, put together a compact kit that you can get out and put away very quickly and easily. If you have a ready to go pack of painting gear, even better.
- Plan your painting time into your day. Put it in your diary. Make an appointment with yourself and make it just as important as any other meeting.
- Make a list of things you want to do (and make sure painting is on that list). If you find you’re not working on one of the things on that list, ask yourself why. Is what you’re doing really so important that it trumps the things on your own list?
- When you feel the urge to procrastinate because you’re daunted by the prospect of creating a painting. Remember: The more you paint, the better you get. It’s those classic 10,000 hours of practice to reach the status of expert. Experience comes with brush miles.
Finally, here’s a video that inspired this post. Carnegie Mellon professor, Randy Pausch provided the world with an ideal example of prioritising time, even when he had been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Watching his lecture on Time Management made a real impact on me. (It isn’t specifically about making time to paint, but there are some great tips and ideas for life in there too). It really brought home the point that it is critical to choose how we spend our time. It really is our most limited resource.