Celebrate small successes

Last blog I talked about bridging , this being one studio technique/habit you can use to set yourself up to work on your painting regularly. If you went ahead and tried this, or took any small step towards any of your 2008 goals, it’s important to celebrate your success.

Why celebrate? Giving yourself a small reward for the step you just took in the direction of your goal is important because we are training our brains and our beings to form new habits and the reward is a positive re-enforcement to keep us going.

Let’s face it, if you go and paint for 5 minutes today you may not have someone patting you on your back saying; “Way to go!” or “Your painting is fantastic” or “ I’m sooo glad you took some time out to pursue your creative dream”. You may not have a lot of initial support around you, so it’s important that you became your own cheering squad. Therefore, giving ourselves positive feedback for this small step we took towards our goal will help us feel good about what we did so that we will do it again and form a new habit.

In the long run we hope that the doing the thing itself (in this case painting) is the reward in itself. I can say for me that being in creative process is reward in itself. However, even though I am totally passionate about my art and paint often ---sometimes there are things that come up – procrastination, resistance, life busy stuff, etc – that keep me away from the studio and my art and hence this is why, in the course of this blog, I am presenting you tricks and habits I've learned that I use to overcome this blocks.

Hence, the key is to reward yourself when you do *it, especially when you are starting out and forming this new habit!

*it= paint, take 5 minutes to write your book, make a small step towards one of your goals.

Here are some small ways that I reward myself for taking small steps towards my 2008 goals:

  • Jump up and down and say YES! YES! YES! I rock!
  • Light an aromatherapy candle
  • Soak my feet in a foot tub with salt
  • Read a chapter of a novel (just finished reading Eat, Pray, Love and Shantaram – both were excellent)
  • Walk up the street to the local stream and wooded area and sit on the bench by the stream
  • Jump around the rocks on the stream
  • Make a hot chai tea with honey and half&half
  • Dance to music
  • Eat a piece of chocolate. Current favourite – Dove Chocolate !
  • Collage in my journal – glue in …quotes from tea bags, pictures of art, inspiring words of messages, postcards, nature scenes.
  • Add images to my art image journal
  • Read one of my artist magazine and cut out images and stick them into my journal (in December I subscribed to Art News, American Artist, and Modern Painters . So far I like Art News the best for images of abstract art.)

And these are some big ways that I reward myself for taking small steps towards (yes, I still did intend to say small step, however sometimes it's good to mix it up a bit and give yourself a jack pot. ) my goals:

  • Walk by the beach
  • Get a cup of Yerba Matte at Lazy Acres Market (they m ake the best!)
  • Get a massage
  • Get a smoothie
  • Get a Raiki treatement
  • Get a sandwich at Lazy Acres Market – such a treat!
  • Go to the gym and hot tub or sauna
  • Get some new stickers for m y journal
  • Buy a new journal or book (When I finish my marketing plan, I’m looking at treating
  • myself to a new image journal from this Leather Journal online store)
  • Get a hair cut
  • Manicure/Pedicure

I’d love to hear how you reward yourself for the small steps you are taking towards making your creative dreams become real life daily habit and ritual.