We have a special guest on the blog today! Lisa Hensley from Delighting in my Days and the Uniquely Woman podcast joins us to share several practical tips and some much-needed inspiration for how even the busiest of moms can pursue creativity in their everyday life. Lisa is gifted at encouraging mamas with the truths that they do not have to be martyrs to motherhood, that they can still thrive and grow as people themselves in the midst of mothering, and that while motherhood is hard and challenging sometimes, it is beautiful and full of purpose, as well. You are in for a treat today as you hear from Lisa.
And, Lisa, thank you so much for sharing your wisdom with us today!
I’m a Crafter’s Box subscriber and I have a stack of boxes in the corner of my office, occasionally taunting me. My husband has teased me about a crocheting project since March and I finally started it in November. (Really though, aren’t yarn projects better in the winter?) There is only so much time and we’ve welcomed a baby in those months as well.
That fourth baby is six months old now. It’s been an interesting adjustment for me this time for a variety of reasons but I’m finally easing back into a reasonable routine for our family. That includes little pockets of time for me to nurture the little gifts and loves that God has placed in my heart.
There’s not one way to find time to be creative as a mama. It will depend on your husband’s schedule, whether or not you work (technically I work part time between the blog/podcast/volleyball even though I’m not paid), how many kids you have, any health problems in your family, so on and so on. But here are a few ways I squeeze in time to do things besides diapers.
Tips for Pursuing Creativity in the Midst of Motherhood
- Reserve quiet time.
This is a delicate balance because I want to be ready to do creative work then but I also want to not be resentful if I’m needed because the baby won’t nap and I need to cuddle him. But I do not plan to clean or fold laundry or any other house chore during quiet time. If the kids are napping or in quiet time, I plan to write, letter, draw, study, etc. I leave a space for the work.
- Have a project going.
Don’t get to dead space and then try to decide what you are going to do. That’s a great way to waste your time. Know what you can work on. You don’t want to spend half your time staring at different supplies in your closet wondering what project to start.
- Leave the supplies out.
This didn’t always work but I have always tried to keep them as accessible as possible. This means my crocheting project from the Crafter’s Box on the desk; there’s paint in the corner with a small cup of water; I have a notebook nearby to jot down writing ideas. It kills motivation if you spend half your working time getting out and putting away supplies.
- Try a personal challenge.
In 2015, I did a personal art project that I posted about regularly on the internet. It was the catalyst for a lot of things that I’m doing now. And all I decided was that I wanted to draw one picture a week. I picked one evening a week and worked on it and I posted it on Instagram on Wednesdays. Did my “audience” care about it? Not really. But it was motivation I needed to keep working. Y’all, I did 52 whole pieces that year. And as the year went on, I added in extra work because I loved it.
- Start small.
I did the one piece a week. I didn’t start out doing one piece that takes an hour every single day. What can you realistically do? Maybe you take one picture of your kid a week and edit it. Maybe you paint one evening a week. Maybe you…..fill in the blank with what you have.
- Be willing to stop projects.
Hate what you are working on? You are your own boss. If you don’t like what you are doing, quit and try something different. There is nothing tying you to that project.
- Get creative with your time.
My husband and I are almost always in the middle of a tv series (Psych again right now) and often I can work on a creative project while we watch tv in the evening. I can’t write that well while we watch tv but I can do other things. I can write in the car (if there aren’t kids in there). I can do some kinds of work while I’m waiting at the doctor’s office. I can get up early one morning a week.
The Bottom Line
It’s not a clean, neat process. Sometimes I’m recording and editing the podcast after my kids go to bed. I’m writing down a few sentences between feeding the baby and herding boys back to their quiet time spot. But the work is happening because I’m not waiting for a big chunk of time. There is no big chunk of time in this stage of life. But there are lots of little moments that I can use.
Being a mama doesn’t mean there’s not time for creativity. You just have to be resourceful in making time.
Lisa’s blog and podcast are an encouragement to moms who desire to pursue creativity, raise godly children, and make a lasting impact in their families and communities, but just can’t see past the next load of laundry or sink full of dishes.
Podcast: Uniquely Woman
Facebook: Delighting in my Days