In the last couple of months, the de-cluttering bug has hit my studio. I decided to get rid of stuff, in which I stored paint and all manner of odds and ends, that were falling apart and replace them with sturdier pieces.
Granted, there’s only so much I can do in my studio, because of space limitations. Reorganization of clutter can just as a wonderful experience as moving to a new studio! The changes I’ve made, already feel, more open and inspiring. I rearranged the furniture, along with my books for inspiration and the rearrangement of my wall collection. Changes as simple as that make such a difference. I’m totally enjoying my space again.
Above you can see part of my books, my desk, and my inspiration area.
I’ve done a lot of clutter clearing in my office/studio space and it’s felt fabulous to unload so much. It’s amazing to me how much clearing my physical space clears my mental space as well.
A few months ago, I spent a couple weeks doing thirty minutes of clutter clearing every day. That worked well for awhile, but after a couple of weeks, I was ready for a break. The major advantage of doing clutter clearing regularly every day, is that it takes the planning out of it. I just knew that every day, I was going to spend a half-hour doing this clutter clearing business and then it would be over.
Working in small chunks of time is good. Planning a specific time is also good, although for me it doesn’t always work. But at the rate I was going, even with this small space, did I want to be doing this for weeks? The other thing I noticed was that I was avoiding a couple areas.
One of those spots was around and under my studio desks. (In my studio space, I have two desks. One for sketching, cutting paper, idea layouts, writing and art unrelated to painting. The other desk is for painting, collaging, anything wet.)
This area was out of control and it was growing. The dust balls, yoga mat and yoga blocks, some old storage containers, bags of reference materials….did I mention the dust balls, I don’t have dust bunnies, mine are more like the tumbleweed you see blowing across the desert! All of this around me and under my desks.
Doesn’t seem like a big deal perhaps, the junk was under my desk and out of sight, but it was weighing on me. I knew it was there and it was also expanding to the point where I couldn’t put my feet under my desks. At the rate it was going, I was building a storage facility around me (think hoarding)!
The question, I asked myself during this process was “Does this support who I am and where I’m going?” Asking this sort of question helped make it so much more clear and easy to get rid of the stuff that I’ve been unsure about what to do with.
It was when I started questioning myself and getting answers that prompted me to another level of de-cluttering. I spent an entire day cleaning out the space under my desks and around my room divider, getting rid of some crap behind my utility shelving and clearing off my inspiration board. And lo and behold, I immediately felt a sense of openness (physically and emotionally)! During that day of intense cleaning I realized that I used my sense of planning and time to procrastinate more.
So, what does this have to do with art, inspiration or creativity?
Well, clearing space helps make room for new things to bloom and develop, whether in your business, in your mind, your life or in your art. Physical space relates so much to our mental space. I find this happens with selling my art too. I simultaneously love helping to brighten someone else’s space with art and when I move art out of my space, it helps make room for new art to be created. It has something to do with flow, keeping things moving, feeling expansiveness, openness, and room for possibility.
Are you finding creative ways to stall and procrastinate? When you look around your creative space, do you see things that do not support you in you and your creativity? Try removing (tossing, storing, giving away) just a few things and see how it makes you feel. What might it open up for you?