Tips for Managing Your Time as a Coloured Pencil Artist | Top TipsFeb 04, 2022
Hands up, who struggles with time management? If you're anything like me, I can imagine you've got your hand reached for the sky!
Managing the time in the day is difficult. I won't sugar coat it; it's difficult! We've all got busy lives, whether we're busy parenting, busy working, busy trying to keep the house tidy and get dinner cooked. With so many things to try and pack into 24 hours, it can often feel like there's never enough time in the day, and it can be a real struggle when all you want to do is sit down and pick up your coloured pencils, but everything else just seems to be getting in the way.
Believe me, I've been there. Some days, I'm still there! Like everyone, I have a lot to get done from day to day, and trying to squeeze drawing, meetings, live sessions, dogs, family and food in (to name a few), while remembering to clean the kitchen and put the washer on can sometimes feel like an impossible task. Learning to manage my time more efficiently has helped me to tick more off my list each day, and prioritising my workload means I can focus on the really important stuff, not get distracted by those little jobs that take up more time than they should, and find time to sit down, do what I love, and draw.
So, I wanted to share a few tips to help you get the most out of the hours in the day, to make sure there's enough time to do the things that are really important to you.
How often have you planned on starting a new drawing, then just as you're about to put pencil to paper, you've thought of something else that needs doing before you can start? And off you go, just quickly calling that friend, or quickly hoovering the living room, and before you know it, you've run out of time to go back to your drawing board, and you're uttering the regrettable words, "I'll get round to it tomorrow".
Procrastination is the thief of an awful lot of our time, particularly when it comes to art, and the two things that are really going to help you avoid it are setting goals and making a plan. If you can understand what your priorities are and create a to-do list around them, you're giving yourself a better chance of actually doing what you want to.
Try not to overwhelm yourself. It's easy to create a huge checklist, then keep pushing jobs off until tomorrow, or the day after that. If you find yourself doing this with a particular task, then this is the thing you should focus on. You may have been putting it off, but if you can make yourself check that item off the list, there'll be a huge weight taken off your shoulders and you'll suddenly feel freed up to do the things you want to.
This is something I use in almost everything I do, and it really is incredibly useful. If I've got a busy day ahead and I'm not completely confident that I'll manage to get everything done, I use visualisation to imagine what the day will look like, and to work out when and how everything will fit in.
It works really well for individual jobs too, and it's all about going into things with a more positive outlook. If you know you have something you don't particularly like ahead of you, picturing yourself starting and completing it in a calm, stress-free way will help you to approach it with less dread and come out feeling better when it's done. Essentially, what you're doing is setting yourself up for success instead of failure, and preplanning what you have to do to make everything run more smoothly and take up less time.
So, if you find yourself struggling to get started on that new drawing, try visualising what it will look like when you've finished and the steps you need to take to get there. Having a better image in your head of the end goal and how you'll reach it will will help make those first steps of the drawing feel a lot less daunting.
Decide What's Important to You
If you're getting to the end of the day and realising that you've done everything but the thing you really wanted to do, make a point of making that thing the most important thing on your to do list. If you're finding that life is just getting in the way and you can't ever seem to find the time to draw, make drawing a priority!
I know a lot of people get into the habit of thinking that drawing is just a hobby, and that it's not important enough to put in front of the other jobs you need to do. What people often forget is that something like art is really important to our wellbeing. Giving yourself the time to do something that makes you feel good or proud will help you avoid getting bogged down, and will have a positive impact in your daily life.
So, the next time you're about to put off drawing because you "just need to do this first" or "have to sort that out before", remind yourself that drawing is important too, and make time to sit down and pick up your pencils.
Really, the most important thing to remember is that you're allowed to, and you should, put yourself first. Make time to do the things you really love doing, and remember that it's important to do the things that benefit you.
For more tips, watch the video above, and leave me a comment to let me know how you manage your time. I'd love to hear your thoughts!
Ignite by Bonny Snowdon
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