The Benefits of a 100-Day Creative Project
I preach the value of maintaining a daily practice (or multiple daily practices) as the key to living our life purposes and achieving our goals. We do not get our novel written, our business built, or our body in shape if we attend to those things only once in a while. “Once in a while” easily becomes “rarely” or “never” and our novel doesn’t get written, our business doesn’t get built, and we remain out of shape.
Creativity coach Natalie Dadamio tackles this subject in her post “The Benefits of a 100-Day Creative Project.” Natalie explains:
How could your life and creative practice change if you committed to one hundred days of creating something? Whether that daily effort was in the service of a painting, a poem, a dance movement, or a journal entry, choosing to commit to making something every day for one hundred days would help change and enhance your creative life.
Often, we are afraid to start something new or we are afraid of commitment to a project. We think it needs to be perfect right from the start, and we stay stuck in our heads, unmotivated, paralyzed with fear. We let fear be the enemy and the thing that keeps us from committing to ourselves, our desires, and our art practice and some other creative practice. No doubt there will be failures along the way, but we can learn to get comfortable with the uncomfortable just by showing up each day to investigate, experiment and explore that burning creative desire deep inside each of us.
Thoughts arise like: “Will anyone like this?” “What if it is not perfect?”, and “Can I really just create for myself?” By creating and making something every day for one hundred consecutive days and by deciding to show up and investigate every aspect of the process, you can learn to break through your own self-imposed barriers and limitations. Fear often shows up in our creative practices and can take over when we are in our head too much, keeping us stuck and inactive. A commitment to showing up and creating for one hundred consecutive days can help loosen up our internal resistance to showing up daily.
If we have been fearful of sharing or fearful of showing up, the fear slowly starts to melt away. It naturally starts to dissipate as we choose to move forward creating each day. If you’re currently locked up, you can start to slowly break through your own self-imposed limitations. When you see some progress and some small wins each day, this helps to create newfound insights and helps to slowly build up momentum that will last after the hundred days have ended.
This daily practice helps us generate our own energy and slowly start forming new habits that in turn naturally increase our confidence level. If you can commit to creating for one hundred consecutive days, then you are well on the way to building excellent new habits, finding confidence, and breaking through fears, doubts and worries.
A 100-day creative project, whether you are working on one long thing like a novel or working on something new each day,
encourages exploration, experimentation, and play. It asks us to be present with whatever is arising and in that way, we can learn to face ourselves gently and compassionately. The benefits of showing up to a 100-day creative project are immense. You start to truly see yourself and see your own capabilities. Where you once felt resistance, now you experience a new openness.
You likewise learn that sharing your imperfect work of art is okay, that sharing is part of the process and part of the journey of being on the creative path. You learn what it is like to create on all sorts of days—the good days, the bad days, the off days, the neutral days–and this information is beneficial to your lifelong creative efforts.
The biggest benefit of all to showing up to a 100-day creative project is the discovery that you are your own best teacher and coach. This is an invaluable bit of learning, as you come to realize that you are the one responsible for your creative life. You become stronger, more confident, and more resilient. In the end, you realize that your creative work has value and you come to understand that you had this creative power all along!
Natalie Dadamio is a mixed media artist and intuitive creativity coach. Visit her at www.nataliedadamio.com