Finding joy learning and creating

Photo by Min An from Pexels

There are just 100 days left in 2021! Or 99 considering that most of today is already over! I wonder how the year has gone by so quickly. But while I think about that I wonder if I have really done something good and useful this year or have just let the days go by.  Have I been learning something or perhaps creating something that make my days matter and bringing me joy?

“I have a deeply hidden and inarticulate desire for something beyond the daily life”

-Virginia Woolf

I came across this quote yesterday and it resonated with the way I feel these days. The past year and half has mostly felt like living the same day on repeat! I am all for routines but I also believe that an important part of the routine is to have some freedom to do something different, something that makes you feel good or something that gives you that feeling of having achieved something! But with boundaries between work life and personal life and workspace and personal space now not existing the way they once used did, I have found it a struggle to be inspired or motivated each day.

I have always operated better when I have something to create. While I was a kid, though I wasn’t blessed with great artistic skills, I always found joy in collecting little things and making something out of them, or cutting out information from newspapers and magazines to create my own little scrap book( one such books that I made even won me a prize for one of my school projects! :D) or just doing something different from the things I was supposed to do.

Even as an adult, I have dabbled in arts and crafts that I wasn’t so good at, but tried them just because I wanted to learn something, to do something that I wanted to do, something that I wasn’t asked to do but I did it because it brought me joy.

When art wasn’t possible, I channeled my need to create through writing. I wrote on my blog everyday for a really long time-slightly over 100 days was my longest streak if I remember correctly. I created a little challenge to write a poem a day for 100 days and I succeeded at that.

All these things that I did, taught me something. I’d discover something new while looking for something for my current activity and then I’d get into this rabbit hole of finding something new, reading up more about it and then finding something else. This process of learning and creating brought me joy.

But the last few days, I haven’t been feeling happy at the end of the day simply because I haven’t been creating things. I don’t remember the last time I sat down to write a short story or a poem. The Ukulele stares at me while I work because I haven’t picked it up in a while to learn some new chords. The art supplies that I once bought are lying unopened in a cupboard. The many courses that I bought or bookmarked have seen no progress.

Today was one of those days when I felt I’d done nothing despite having worked for more hours than required. I’d ticked off many things from my to-do list at work but still felt like I hadn’t done anything that brought me joy. Most of the last few days or even weeks have been the same.

The more I thought about it, I realized that it was perhaps because I hadn’t created anything, or I hadn’t done anything inspired. Creating something and then learning something in the process or even the other way around- learning something and then doing something to put that learning into practice is what brings me joy. Though I make a to-do list of all the things that I have to do, ticking all the tasks off doesn’t bring me as much joy as creating something does.

Today when I found a few minutes between meetings, I designed a simple bookmark. It isn’t something very elaborate or fancy and I don’t know if I’ll ever get it printed for it to be used as a bookmark, but in those 10 minutes that it took me to create it, I was happy!

When I realized that there were only 100 days left in the year, I thought why not use the last 100 days of the year to do perhaps create something or discover something new each day? Most of my previous 100-day challenges have concentrated on one skill or one thing, but this time I do not want to stick to one thing for 100 days. I want to make it a point to learn something new and/or create something every day. At the end of the day, if nothing else brings me joy, maybe that little thing would!

So here I am with the day almost over, having designed a bookmark and ending up typing over 800 words about why I wasn’t happy, now feeling happy that I did create something today!

Since this idea of doing this as challenge only came up while I wrote this, I do not have anything planned. I’ll perhaps post daily updates about it on Twitter or Instagram. Or perhaps I’ll put up weekly updates here on the blog. If you’d also like to do something on similar lines, let me know. I’d be happy to have some company!

So, do you like creating things too?

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