An artist had better not wait to be inspired before beginning to work, since inspiration typically only comes to artists who are willing to work when not inspired. Tchaikovsky put it this way: “I’m inspired about every fifth day but I only get that fifth day if I show up the other four days.” This is one of the great truths about the creative process, that if you sit on your hands waiting for inspiration you will likely still be sitting there next month or next year.

That being the case, how can you stay motivated on all those days when you aren’t feeling inspired? Over the next five weeks I’ll present five tips. Here’s number 1!

1. Create and maintain an art practice. If you get in the habit of showing up every day to your art, come heck or high water, then you have completely solved the problem of a lack of motivation on those uninspired days. Yes, of course, you may skip days, as you have other life purposes, duties, and reasons for being: but don’t skip many. If you let three or four days pass, six months may vanish.

Tip 2 next week!

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