Friday, January 11, 2008

Lose Track of Time? Focus & Organization Aren't all They're Cracked up to Be

Artists are notorious for not paying attention to time. Some people may (and do) call that trait selfish or unorganized. Enough of us creative types have this trait that I don't see it as a character flaw, though it can be a problem. Like needing glasses or having hay-fever, there are tools available to help (not cure) us.

I've noticed that when I'm focused on a creative project I lose track of time. Despite beepers, timers and other techno gadgets I don't notice time. I may look at the clock. I may even repeat the hour to somebody and still not get the significance of the current time and my relationship to it.

Yesterday I wrote that I would give you some tips to nurture your creativity. The more I think about it the more I wonder if this is such a good idea in January. Maybe the attention and action this type of list hints at and the time it would take is more of a September or October thing. January is already overloaded with Things-To-Do. Besides, if you're already engrossed in something, a tip that takes more time is only going to cause you more trouble.

So.... here's my compromise: One tip. One is easy. And the especially easy thing about this tip is that it's an overlay. You don't need more time, you just overlay this idea over other things you're already doing.

Notice Beauty.

That's my tip. It works like this. Putting away groceries? Notice the beautiful colors and textures of the produce and bakery items. Stuck in a traffic jam? Lots of beauty here -- the car next to you might be gorgeous (Or even the person in it!) Going to the dump? (Really!) beauty is found in both excess and simplicity.

Do this often enough and you're going to go-to-the-next-level in your observation of beauty. You're going to realize that beauty is like snow -- there are as many types of beauty as there are types of snowflakes. Beauty isn't just about the decorative and sanitized. Keep your attention on beauty and you'll notice that like the black and white of the ying yang symbol, your idea of beauty shifts with your perceptions.

And then -- well, you've lost track of time.
True! But you are the richer for it and so is your work. And that, after all is what our favorite timely friends, clients and associates appreciate about us.

In my teens I began experimenting with methods to focus my mind. Brought up in a tradition of Christian Prayer, that was the first action I recognized as a mental tool. Subsequently I've delved into other things: yoga, movement meditations, sitting meditations, and more. My favorite method that I return to (regardless of what I'm experimenting with) is the Silva Method. Introduced to the Silva Method in the 1980's I have found it to be very practical. Yes, it can get wu-wu. (Most any metaphysical process does.) But, even if you aren't attracted to the metaphysical, the Silva Method of mediation and mind control has something for you. Practical methods such as:
The Three Finger Technique
The Glass of Water Technique
The Progressive Relaxation Technique
and much more will give you the tools to minimize stress.
I highly recommend the Silva Method. Give it a try. The risk-free terms are on the website.
Silva Life System - Empower Your Mind

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