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embrace your creative rhythm

2012 May 7

Spring is my favorite season. Seeds and bulbs buried in the soil break the surface and unfurl to greet the longer days. Barren fruit trees invite bees to shake & shimmy in pollen or sip nectar among fragrant blossoms.

My creative energy seems to follow the seasons. I’m more energized in the spring than I am in the throes of winter, for example. As I come alive in the spring–a time I consider my “new year”–I have creative energy to take on new opportunities and partnerships and create new offerings.

As entrepreneurs, we can make conscious choices about how to run our businesses, depending on which business stage we’re in.

pay attention to your creative rhythm

Your creative rhythm is critical information to knowing how you want to run your business. Do you pay attention to your own particular creative rhythm?

What is your daily rhythm? When are you energized? When do you feel like taking a nap? (Do you let yourself take a nap? I’m pro-nap!)

Take stock of when you do and don’t have energy over a week, a month, a quarter, a year. Do you notice any patterns?

Observe. Write it down. Take notes.

overlay your creative rhythm with market seasonality

Once you know a little bit about your creative rhythm, you can take this information and combine it with your knowledge of the seasonality of your business. It’s not all about self-work and personal development, though it’s an important process!

If you’re a life coach, January is a great month to help new clients reach their goals. What can you prepare you or your business for new clients in January?

In many businesses, big and small, summer tends to be slower than other times of the year. Is there a way to be proactive about the summer slump? Can you use this time to create offerings for the fall? Or can you do something at other times of the year to mitigate the inevitable slow times?

This is just one way to think about your creative rhythm, but it’s a foundational element of how you want to structure your business.

don’t go changing…to try to please me

Maybe you’ve noticed that I haven’t suggested you be more productive, wake up earlier, or  change anything in your current schedule. I’m not asking you to change a thing, because you are already good enough, perfect enough and smart enough to market your business as you are.

This is the first in a series about the importance of honoring your creative rhythm in creating a sustainable marketing practice for you and your business. 

20 Responses Post a comment
  1. Shannon Wilkinson permalink
    May 7, 2012

    I became really obvious to me this year that like you, spring feels like the beginning of the year for me. It also coincides with my birthday, which also feels appropriate!

    At the same time, it’s made it hard for me to jump on the new year coaching band wagon. Although I’m sure there’s a different way to approach it, when I consider it in advance.

    Thanks for the great ideas. I’m looking forward to hearing more from you on creative rhythm.

    • May 9, 2012

      Great to hear from you, Shannon!

      It was very interesting to notice spring really does rev me up. At first I thought maybe I was on a Lunar New Year calendar but no, it’s definitely spring. I suppose it does help that spring starts just after our birthdays!

      It’s made me re-think how I want to offer new things and I definitely understand your quandry about January. Perhaps your audience is like us and wants offers in spring?

  2. May 8, 2012

    Joy, I’m so with you on this. I’m not sure if my cycles are seasonal, but I’m learning (and trying to remind myself) that bursts of creative projectizing and teaching absolutely need to be followed up by rest and nourishment.

    Lots of it.

    So thank you for reinforcing this idea, and giving us permission to pay attention to our rhythms instead of go-go-going.

    • May 9, 2012

      I’m learning right along with you. It’s a challenge when a lot of messages are about pushing the envelope or increasing your productivity when we need more rest and nourishment.

      Also, it just seems sensible to me that we need that rejuvenation time.

      Being part of the Society of the Secret Play Date has been so helpful in embracing this and watching you model that for me too, so thank you for that. Thank you for stopping by!

  3. May 8, 2012

    oh yes my creative natural way of being and flowing – today moving one step closer to honoring it!

    • May 9, 2012

      Oh, you’ve been such an inspiration to me to follow my own gut and creative impulses! Yes, taking the next step and being in conscious action! Thanks, Jen!

  4. Eileen Wesson permalink
    May 8, 2012

    Born on Saturday March 22 has given me a relaxed way of enjoying Spring. I have learned that rushing or forcing anything to happen before it’s the “right” time takes me out of the rythum of life, out of the rythum of nature. I feel as though I plant seeds everywhere I go and it’s my job to reconize the stages of their development. My life is my garden and I love prunning, weeding and supporting everything in it.
    Thanks for the opportunity to grow with all of you.

    • May 11, 2012

      @Eileen, this is beautiful. I’m still learning that rushing or forcing just doesn’t have the same result. Lucky you to be born at the cusp of Spring!

      (posted this the other day, but it got shuffled down below everyone else’s comments, so this is a repost!)

  5. May 8, 2012

    Joy, what a great topic! I can’t wait to read more from you about how to work with our creative rhythms, rather than fight against them to change what is natural and intuitive. Spring has always seemed to be the beginning of my year, too. Thanks for sharing such enlightening information.

    • May 9, 2012

      Thanks, Sharon! Fighting against intuition and nature seems to be a losing battle for me every time. Learning to go more in the flow of the rhythm–not easy when you let yourself ebb. I’d like to contribute to a healthier entrepreneurial community. Thanks for stopping by!

  6. May 8, 2012

    What a revolutionary idea — to advocate noticing our creative patterns (and honoring them), as opposed to rushing headlong into trying to *fix* them!

    For me and my partner, spring has been the season of finally launching our new (but long anticipated) business. I’m looking forward to watching that creative energy shift and flow over time as we grow.

    • May 9, 2012

      Hi Tracy! Thank you for stopping by. Congratulations on your new business venture!

      Through MANY starts & stops over the years, I’ve found that letting things unfold in their own time seems to yield better results. I’m looking forward to hearing more about how your business develops! Please let me know how things go.

  7. Ruth permalink
    May 8, 2012

    Joy,
    This seems to be a repeating theme in my life right now…observing the seasons in my life and allow growth at my own pace. I am not kidding! Your blog is about the fourth time it has come up in the past week. Between you and me, hot house ripen tomatoes have little if any flavor…and if I force myself to ‘change’ I am pretty bland.

    I am trying to picture my tap root digging deep into the soil…A great blog, Joy! Good to see you!

    • May 9, 2012

      Aw, thanks, Ruth! Hm, seems like you are getting messages from all over about this. Very interesting! I do think you have so much to offer and to just take one small step at a time…at your own pace will be so much more fruitful for you.

  8. Kelly Pratt permalink
    May 10, 2012

    Joy, like Ruth, this topic has been coming up a lot for me recently. Everything you’ve said is so right-on! I too love spring – but there’s a little feeling of confusion for me too. While on one hand I’m becoming energized, having new ideas and wanting to start new ventures, I also have a strong feeling of “wrapping up” or “winding down.” A holdover from the old school year patterns? (although you’d think after 30+ years I’d be over that!).

    So while I’m energized and ready to JUMP IN! I’m also being drawn to pack everything up and take the summer off… Ok. I like both messages. Guess I’ll find a happy medium! Thanks Joy for your insightful and thought provoking post.

    • May 11, 2012

      @Kelly: I think we all have that push-pull within us. Hm, can you let yourself have a little of both? It could be a happy medium, but it also sounds like a siren call for rest amidst the busyness too.

  9. May 10, 2012

    Joy, I love the reminder to honor my own rhythms. I know my daily rhythms pretty well and am getting better about my weekly rhythms, matching routines to the reality of my energy. Seasonally, I know I’m very sensitive to the darkness in winter and my days get much shorter along with the days outside. I think there’s still a seed of self-judging that my productive times on any given day aren’t as long as I wish they were (I mean, lots to get done, only so many hours when I’m doing my best work) or don’t coincide with the many things I need to do, so I like the reminder not to fight it, to figure out a way to work with the rhythms I naturally have/experience.

    • May 11, 2012

      @Darcy: It’s great that you know yourself and much of your rhythm so well.. And yeah, I can understand the self-judgment–I hear that too, It’s a message we get continuously that we’re not enough on too many levels that just isn’t true. Let me know if you ever need the reminder again. 🙂

  10. August 24, 2013

    I love Spring too. I prefer it than summer.

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