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An Experiment in Creating Instead of Consuming

I find that I consume a lot: of beauty, information, news, other people's babies & cats, etc. I want to consume less, and create more, so I'm trying out an experiment.

When I have a compulsion to "check" something — Facebook, Instagram feed, Pinterest's beautiful ideas, business metrics etc. — instead I will try to create something. 

I know that not everyone is a "creative" (as a noun 😒), but we are all wired to some extent to create (the verb). I'm sure that there is research about the flexing of our brain muscles when we create, rather than consume — I don't know any of the details! But besides the brain benefit, I feel like I want more to show for my time spent.

"I read the Internet so much I feel like I’m like on page a million of the worst book ever."Aziz Ansari

Right?! I don't finish bad books anymore, but I think I'd still rather read a bad book than a bad book's worth of internet... and yet, I have done it. Many times over. Without even so much as a "books I've read this year" list to show for it.

Here are some of my ideas of ways to create instead of consume:

  • Organize my neglected photos to create a photo book
  • Contact a friend 
  • Doodle
  • Blank thinking time
  • Actively design a DIY project or space redo using Pinterest, rather than collecting hoards of inspirational pins
  • Work through my household project list
  • Clean
  • Write a poem
  • Use one of my kids' art project books to try something new
  • Play an instrument
  • Cook or bake
  • Color
  • Plant something

There are even a few other things that are somewhere in the gray area — not exactly creating anything (other than my own entertainment), but a bit more active than internet "checking": reading a book, doing a crossword puzzle, playing a game... Honestly, I'll take it. I just want to curb some of the Pavlov's dogs-response to notifications or downtime by being a bit more proactive, instead of passive, with my time.

I had been planning on sharing this idea later in the summer, after I had some success — you know, like, to report on my results. But, quite frankly: it's been very challenging! I would much rather have some friends giving it a go with me!

Do you want to give it a try? Sign up here to join in my creating experiment. We can encourage one another and get some reminders along the way.

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