All too often, I get sucked into the vortex of digital comparisons. Do you, too?
It starts out innocently enough — I’ll be scrolling through Instagram on the weekend and see one beautifully composed still life after another. You know the ones: that perfect golden light shining down over a beautifully prepared breakfast at the coolest cafe in town with a frothy latte peeking into the edge of the frame. Oh, and don’t forget the freshly done gel manicure casually resting on the table.
If you feel a touch of envy creeping up like I sometimes do, it’s a good idea to step back and analyze your feelings. When I stop and actually think about it, my feelings are not rooted in wanting to be there. My feelings are rooted in wanting to create images that look that beautiful. And from many years of experience, I know that it’s much harder than it looks.
Like most of you, I work full-time, splitting my hours between Branch and Blogcademy and there just isn’t a lot of leftover time to creatively experiment just for fun. The easy way out would be to make excuses — I’m too busy, I’m too too tired, I’m too whatever. But excuses will get you nowhere.
A better solution is to set small, attainable goals. I’m a big fan of goals that build up steadily but don’t take over your life. Who needs more stress and pressure?
With the goal set to improve my still life skills, I created a simple challenge for myself last year: on Fridays, I’d set aside 10 minutes or so and snap a photo of a new composition. To track my progress, I’d tag it with #stilllifefriday. Though I’ve taken a few weeks off here and there, the photos are starting to accumulate. It’s been nice having something simple yet fun to look forward to every Friday.
Whether you’re struggling to blog, Instagram, or *insert task here* more often, the key is to set manageable goals. That way, the finish line always feels within reach. Keep it fun and keep it light.
Here are some suggestions:
• If reading more is on your list, join a book club to stay motivated! There’s a great one going on over at A Beautiful Mess and the selections change out monthly.
• If improving still lifes is on your list, join me every Friday by hashtagging your photos with #stilllifefriday on Instagram. I’d love to see your inspiring compositions!
• If learning new design skills is your focus, try out some Skillshare classes. It’s the easiest way to access the knowledge of creative experts.
• If stepping up your blogging game is on your list, Blogcademy Online launches January 29th and teaches you the keys to running a successful blog in a single weekend.
Your turn: what are you hoping to improve upon this year? How can you make it more attainable?