It’s amazing to me how quickly the days go by and how little I remember of them. A little bit like the conversation with teenagers at the dinner table – what did you do today? Nuthin… it’s so easy to let the day go by and not hang on to any of it.
This has been especially so in the last year where every day has felt like the same. To combat this I have gotten into the routine of logging my days. Nothing spectacular just a few notes at the end of the day to capture what I did. It’s a little bit Austin Kleon and a little bit bullet journal.
I also like to capture my energy level and focus and also what was the highlight for the day. I have a template that I made for Evernote that makes setting all this up pretty easy.
I find that on the days where I have taken a photograph I can reconstruct what I was doing, what mood I was in, what the weather was like and on and on effortlessly. The photographs immediately take me back. I can’t help but think that this is because I am usually very ‘present’ when I’m photographing while I’m thinking about what’s next, racing ahead through my day, when I’m not.
How do you slow time down to relish and remember your days?
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.”
Thinking about the video from last week, the SXSW keynote speech that Austin Kleon gave, and his thoughts about showing your work led me to Brene Brown, her book Daring Greatly and a couple of videos for you to check out below. The title of her book comes from the speech that Teddy Roosevelt gave above and deals largely with being vulnerable, something that you absolutely must deal with to be creative and then get your work out in the world. Check out the videos below for more from Brene Brown.
I’ve followed Austin Kleon‘s work for a while and have mentioned him on the blog previously around the time his book ‘Steal Like an Artist‘ came out. Since then Austin has continued to do great work, published another book (Show your Work) and has spoken at many conferences discussing his thoughts and approaches to living a creative life.
The video above is the keynote that he gave at this years SXSW conference and is well worth a watch, particularly for those people who are at the early stages of building a body of work and finding an audience. Do you recognize yourself in his descriptions? I hope not!
Austin Kleon’s book ‘Steal Like An Artist’ arrived last week. I love it – get a bunch and give it away to your friends. It’s a quick read but lots of great material to keep going back to. The book is built around the list of 10 ideas shown below:
#6 is of course the answer! We all should be spending our time and energy on doing good work and getting that out into the world. Any rewards will flow from that.