Friday, May 21, 2010

Everything has a place and everything's in its place... Or is it?

Did you ever realize that the organization, or lack thereof, in your craft room may affect your creativity?

It does! I recently experienced this firsthand!

First, my room was a mess, but that is always remedied quickly, so has never caused a problem with my creativity. Everything has a place. The problem with everything having a place is that even though, for example, there is a box for chipboard pieces, which has packaging, cereal boxes, chipboard, grungeboard, coasters, etc. in it, the box is large and is disorganized inside. I have to dig through to get to what I want.

According to Feng Shui, (No, I am not IN to all that sort of stuff, this just made sense) if you have a container, such as a box or basket, even if it is tucked under a table out of sight, and it is disorganized, you know this, and it will affect your creativity.

Each basket, box, or container you have in your craft room should be organized to your liking. Now that doesn't mean that you have to have everything labeled and standing nice and straight. It means that if organized is defined as all your scraps in a box haphazardly to you, then it is organized. BUT ask yourself this: Is it really organized and working for you, or in the back of your mind, does it really bother you, and you wish there was a "better way"?

Apparently, according to a Feng Shui expert I consulted--my Aunt (ok, so she is not an expert, but she has done a ton of research on Feng Shui) your creative space does not have to be serene and sparsely decorated to provide the energy you need to create. For your space to have the "creative energy" you need, you must get rid of the clutter. Clutter in Feng Shui is defined as items that you haven't used for a long time and do not need. It also refers to disorderly tools and supplies that you do need. Clutter no matter the level of visual chaos it creates will affect your creative energy flow in the room.Feng Shui even teaches that clutter that is closed away in a box under your bed can affect your sleep cycle! If it is cluttered, just remember that it is bothering you even if you think it is closed away from sight!

Let's look at two examples, as described by my Aunt:
First, in Suzy Scrapper's room, she has everything in a labeled box. Tools and supplies are in those nice white storage cubes, and the room is clean, neat, and organized from top to bottom upon first glance. However, if you pull out one of those drawers, Suzy has haphazardly piled alphabet stickers in with no regard to how they should best be stored. Seems like such a small problem, right? Well, when Suzy would create a mini album or scrapbook page, she noticed that when she need alphas, she would go to the drawer, look through the first 10-12 of the 30 packages that she has had for years, then give up on finding the "perfect" match. She would then settle for a stamped letter or forgo the letters altogether. Has this ever happened to you? It has to me. Apparently, if Suzy had taken the time to put these alphas in a notebook in page protectors, she would have saved time searching, and would have been able to identify what she wanted much more easily. Even this minor blur of disorganization has affected Suzy's creativity. The negativity she felt after she got frustrated looking for what she wanted, affected her energy flow and thus her end result!

Carol Crafter's room  is completely different. When you enter Carol's room, there is visual chaos everywhere. At least to most people it is chaotic. To Carol, everything has a place, and there is nothing in the room that she doesn't use. Everything is out in the open for the eye to see. There is no visual chaos in Carol's eyes; it is all inspiration. Additionally, when Carol sits down to make a tag, for example, she can put her hand on everything she needs immediately. Unlike Suzy, when Carol organized, she thought of how she works. She considered what she used most often and put it near her. She then considered within each type of supply, such as tags, how they should be stored. Carol put the Staples tags in a small box separately because she uses them most often. The other tags, she put on the shelf too. BUT the small box of tags she uses most frequently, is on top. Easy to get. Also, Carol has not hoarded her supplies. Although her area is jam-packed, she uses everything in there. She doesn't have a box of supplies that she hasn't touched in years, because she is waiting for the "right project" to use them on or waiting for "time" to make them. Plus, she has her items stored so they are easy to get to. She has two boxes on the top shelf, but they are business and tax files that she has to keep and not access. Suzy has boxes on the top shelf full of supplies that she uses that her husband would have to get down for her. If Suzy wanted to create something from within these boxes, she would have to wait for her husband to get the box down. It is obvious how this affects the positive flow of creative energy.

Feng Shui tips for Creative Spaces:
  • Use blocks of color to provide movement in a space. Placing something red, for example, in different locations around the room will provide an energizing feeling to your room.
  • Showcase your successful projects. Seeing your successes and the beauty they provide will greatly increase your creative drive.
  • Keep a inspiration board. The things on this board do not have to pertain to your particular craft. Each item should be something that calms you, inspires you, intrigues you, or simply "catches your eye".From these random images, you will be inspired in your creative endeavors as well.
  • Adding a lit candle to your space will provide an elemental serenity that will help calm your mind, allowing for better creative flow. 
Most of you have heard of the areas of Feng Shui. The Bagua Map is simply an energy layout of your home or room. It identifies the areas of your home as they relate to the different aspects of your life. So there is an area for career, one for health, relationships, finances, and so on. Here’s what it looks like:
Supposedly, when organizing your room, home, or inspiration board, aligning things into certain areas will help the energy flow. (This is where I get lost, but I share because I care.)
1. It will give more "energy and power" to each goal because you are directly relating it to the relevant "life area".
2. It will show you where you are putting the most energy and focus in your life and where you may need to put more.
Creating your space or inspiration board this way sets clear intentions for what you want and moves the energy towards that much more efficiently and effectively, which will result in more positive flow in those areas.

Hope you got some inspiration to improve your space to be more creative.
I also hope you don't think I am a huge hippie for saying all this. It makes sense to me. Common sense.
Thanks for stopping by!

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