Friday, 21 December 2012

Creativity Anxiety and the Home-maker - Part 1.Time



"And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you;" KJV

 "Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you," NIV 
 (1 Thessalonians 4:11)

This verse has been life-changing for me. I keep it with me through the day


Today I would like to pose some questions. They should be simple enough to answer, with at least a reasonable 'guess'timate. And yet, I think that most of us find it difficult to even think about these seemingly innocent questions. Please stay with me here, because I hope that you will be encouraged as we go on.

1. How many sewing patterns do you own? How many of those have you actually made up at least once?
2. How many knitting or crochet patterns are in your cupboards? What proportion of them have you used?
3. How much fabric do you have, how many card-making supplies?
4. Are you thinking about buying more of the above, even though you haven't used what you do have?


Dear Home-makers, my final question is..

What sort of emotions are you feeling as you consider those questions?

Many of us are probably feeling some measure of guilt, stress, anxiety, dissatisfaction, inferiority, or even fear!


We are aware of the desire within us, to make pretty and useful things for our homes and family.To 'work with our hands'. These creative ideas whirl around in our heads like a tangled muddle, but they rarely translate themselves into finished items (or even begun items). We may even buy the new fabrics, yarns and pattern books, fully intending to make them up 'next week' or 'by Christmas'. We feel bad about wasting money on them.

I believe that it doesn't have to be this way. It is possible for the home-maker to turn those negative and unproductive emotions around. From feeling guilty, stressed and fearful - and unfulfilled, to productive, meaningful, relaxing, contenting and peaceful. Her home  can soon be full of lovingly crafted pretty touches, and clothes for herself and her family.




One obstacle that gets in the way is - no time! This is the first thing we need to address when dealing with 'creativity anxiety' in the Home-maker

Here are some beautiful images from the past which can give us some insight into their attitudes towards creativity.















The first thing that strikes me about these images, is that none of them seem to be in a hurry. The little girl in the first picture looks as if she is engrossed in the pleasure of the 'making' rather than focusing on 'the end result'

In the second image, the lady sewing seems to be very relaxed and quiet. This is her 'evening' activity. There doesn't appear to be a deadline, rather, regular sewing, mending or small gifts to sew while the little ones are sleeping

In the next, our little girl and friend are content to sit and sew, or watch. And in the last picture, the woman knitting socks for her family is dreaming as she clicks away with her needles.

Today's home-maker does not have the time to approach her sewing and creativity in the same way. It isn't very easy - and it certainly isn't much fun trying to cram your sewing into jam-packed days. But there ARE things we can do which will give us the time we need. Just by making small changes, we can reap big benefits. Here are some ideas to think about

Facebook.Twitter. Internet. TV, Cell/Mobile phone. Books and magazines. Can all be useful, but can also be a way of frittering away huge chunks of our day , nosing into the lives of others, judging their actions or righteousness, unwholesome, unedifying and time-sapping. How many hours a day are we using one or other of these media?

Activities outside the home. Is it vital to your family or yourself to spend much of your time outside of the home?

Perfectionism. Spending hours in the kitchen perfecting new recipes, over-detailed cleaning (worrying about what others may think of your housekeeping). Are you a total perfectionist when it comes to your sewing or crafts? The beauty of home-made is in the imperfection. It doesn't look mass-produced.

Choosing the RIGHT time Sometimes, there is the time to be found in the day, but it is not convenient to sew or craft at that time because of the space required for that activity. The home-maker needs to think about the way her home and family run. It's no good getting out the pins or card-making when it's nearly tea-time for example. It is a good idea to sew in the evenings when children are asleep or everyone has eaten and settled down. As you can see from many old pictures, ladies often sewed by lamp or candle-light. In our house, our electric lights are those energy-saving bulbs that don't give off good light. But, as in the old days, it is still possible to do things without daylight. Save the cross-stitch projects for the daytime however and sew while sitting near a window as you can

My house cross-stitch is a daylight project


The home-maker can adjust her day and her priorities so as to make time for quiet creativity. It takes a little thought and effort. But most of all, I find, it simply takes a decision to make small changes.

This world is a hard task-master. It insists that life is all about performance, results, productivity. But that is not where contentment lies. The joy and contentment comes from taking your time, the feel of the fabric, the rhythm of the stitches, the love that is woven into them. This has been my experience as someone of older years. I wish I had learned it when I was young.

Remember that making the changes we would like in our life, can seem impossible however hard we try, but when we are weak, God is strong. We can take our weaknesses to our Heavenly Father in prayer, and He can transform us through the power of His Holy Spirit

 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

(2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

 Happy creating, ladies


27 comments:

  1. Oh my goodness, this is such a timely post! I just opened up another blog just for this subject ~ creativity ~ :0) I have realized that I do have the time but not the motivation, because I kept comparing myself with others. Agh! But now, well, now I am just allowing Our Lord to guide me on a daily basis. So far, I am listening :-) Thank you so much for sharing my friend. mb

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    1. Just popping over to visit you maria x Thank you for your kind words

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  2. Beautifully written! I do indeed want to be creative but being a homeschooling mom, sometimes it is difficult to budget the time.

    Blessings,
    Amy Jo

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    1. Thank you Amy Jo. Nice to see you. You are certainly kept busy homeschooling. I hope you manage to find some time x

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  3. Beautiful and well-written post - thank you for sharing!
    It was a good reminder for me to slow down. I know I can easily get caught up in things that aren't important and waste my time.
    Thanks again, my friend!

    Hugs,
    Stephanie

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    1. Sweet Stephanie : ) I love your visits. I have just visited your blog too xx

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  4. Hello, My what words of wisdom! Your post just gave me such a peace within my creative portion of my brain. I thought your questions were just so right on the point, where we tend to stumble.
    I was thinking you ought to link-up with this blog called
    http://www.deeprootsathome.com/
    I am gonna save this post!
    Blessings, Roxy

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    1. Hi Roxy. I have just linked up with deep roots at home as you suggest. Thank you for your comments - I'm glad you enjoyed the post x

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  5. The Holy Spirit is using this post to speak to me. Yesterday I was at the craft store, pawing through fabrics and patterns to buy to quench my thirst for doing something creative. Thing is, I already have probably close to 100 sewing patterns at home with only about 25% being used before. And I have more fabric than I can handle. I can't be out there spending $ I don't have on wasted materials. I have the intense urges to create but with my lifestyle there is not a lot of time to do anything. I have a toddler and am 4 months pregnant (tired). But now that I've read your post I know I can make time to enjoy and savor the projects I want to do instead of rushing through them and making a bungled mess out of them. God can give me strength even in these seemingly insignificant areas of my life. No more feeling stressed! :) Blessings, Sarah

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    1. Sarah - I am so blessed by your comments. I felt that the Holy Spirit was urging me to write on this subject, and I am so happy that it has helped you. I will be writing more posts on this as I can. God Bless x

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  6. I LOVE this! I wanted to visit you back and I'm so glad I did!

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    1. Thank you Auntie Em (love your blogging name) x

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  7. Happy Christmas from Harvest Lane Cottage! I just noticed that you are a new follower, so I'm here to visit. I'm a new follower, too.

    I hope you have a wonderful Christ-centered Christmas!

    Laura
    Happy at Home

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    1. Hello Laura, Thank you for following me : )

      Merry CHRISTmas to you too x

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  8. Thank you for coming by to see my Christmas story (tillieisms.blogspot.com) - it made me aware of YOUR blog and this post about projects at a time when I am re-evaluating my life and making the room for my crochet work and glass work again. We moved into our current home four months ago and really wanted this to be a restart for our lives and our family and your post here dovetails into those goals quite nicely!

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  9. Just finished reading your post. I am inspired to just snatch fifteen minutes here or there. I'm so glad we've found each other. I'll be back!

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  10. perfectly lovely, Leslie. If we get too many projects, it puts pressure on our brains. And sometimes we get too many projects because one gets too tedious, especially if we are creating a large quilt or crocheting a big blanket. We may put it away and start some smaller thing, just for variety. And as you say, our time is not as free as people would think, especially if we are available to other people who need us. I am busy using up everything I've had stored up, from paper to fabric, and feeling less and less pressured.

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    1. Thank you Lydia. You make a good point about starting other projects to have a break from larger ones. I'm glad you are using up everything, and feeling less stressed. It is exactly my experience too and it is surprising what a difference it makes.

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  11. A very helpful post. I have a bunch of sewing patterns and I need to take the time to make something though it takes me hours. I am also pregnant with a toddler and 3 other girls, so I think there's more hope in taking my oldest to classes.

    Anyway, I hope you have a wonderful Christmas. :)

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  12. Hello Mrs A

    Thank you. You are certainly in a busy season of your life! Merry Christmas to you too x

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  13. Loved this post, and I'm sure I'll come back and read it often. Thank you! xx

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  14. Thank you Tina. I wish you a very happy 2013 x

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  15. Dear Budgeteer,
    I am in love with what I'm reading, well, the truth of it! I would like to feature this post tomorrow on the Deep Roots At Home 'EOA' Wednesday link-up! I am so thankful and blessed that you linked this for others to be encouraged!!

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    1. Hello Jacqueline - and thank you for commenting. I am so happy that you have found this item useful and encouraging. Thank you, especially, for featuring this post on your lovely blog Deep Roots at Home.

      xx

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  16. I can get creativity stress MOST DAYS and still end up not having made anything!! Just lately I have found that starting in small steps helps...and will love having your post to refer back to.
    x

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  17. An interesting article....I do a bit of cross stitch myself....here is the link to some of my work,have to photograph more of it....doing a few projects myself ...http://anjalisfoodkaleidoscope.blogspot.in/2013/10/needle-work-by-me.html#more

    Do visit my space....I will keep dropping in here...its very nice

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