another page from
A Creative Hand/Book
by Aisling D'Art
Left page: a hand printed on a photo of a purple landscape.
Right page: "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler."--Henry David Thoreau
Simplify your life by taking a big step towards your dreams. The bigger that step, the more things will fall off your "to do" list, and they're usually those things which have been draining you of creative energy and joy.
When your life is all about landscapes, or string quartets, or your novel, or collage, it gives you focus. Everything relates (or doesn't) to your goals. Life becomes much, much simpler.
Technology and modern society often provide us with too many choices.
Identify your dreams. Write down a very clear image of what you'd like to be doing in three or five years, if you had unlimited resources. Use whatever art form you enjoy, to make that vision real: Collage the elements of your perfect life. Write a song about it. Anything that gives it reality. Then condense your dream to three sentences, maximum. One simple sentence is even better.
Then, make a list of everything you're doing daily, weekly, or what's on your current, endless to-do list, and see what contributes to your perfect life.
If it doesn't contribute to that vision at all, do you really have to do it? Maybe you made a commitment, and you need to fulfill that. That's okay. Just put a note in your planner, your wallet or checkbook (where you'll see it before spending), and over your phone, which describes your perfect life. Under that, write, "Does this help my dream? If not, say NO!"
And then do it.
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All original text, photos, and art are © 2000, Aisling D'Art.