As you intentionally make time and space for more creativity this year, be sure to document and record your adventures. We tend to view our endeavors through a lens of completion, or arriving at the destination, but creativity is a journey!  The journey is where the value lies. Not only will documenting your journey help you process what you are learning, but down the road you will be grateful you can look back and see how far you’ve come.

Journal

We can’t advocate this enough. Write down important creative breakthroughs, write down your challenges, write down your hopes. Writing as an exercise just opens things up for you mentally. When you’re inspired, write. Hit a wall? Write. You get the idea- we want you to journal about every step of the process. Sometimes, just the mere act of physically writing something out can get things flowing. Write because of the effect it can have on your creativity, and write for your future self to witness the progress. And be sure to doodle in the margins of your journal- it will look cool and you’ll feel more creative!

Take Photos and Videos

If you’re anything like me, you tend to want to only document the beautiful, the funny, or the noteworthy moments in life. Because of the nature of creating, your journey will be full of ups and downs, the inspired and the mundane. Not every step will be earth-shattering; sometimes it looks much like the step before. But document ANYWAY. Capture the in-between moments, the moments of progression and transition. The journey is the true masterpiece, not the final product. Be to your creativity as a doting parent with a cute kid- record as much as you reasonably can, whether you think anyone will care or not.

Developing a Creativity Culture

Speaking of cute kids, we have lots of ‘em. And we are so grateful to have started documenting each of their journeys from the beginning. I have a journal for each of them, countless photos (some children are better documented than others. Sorry, #3 and #4) and videos to record everyday moments. What we love about this is that we documented little details that we would never remember years later, but that we look back on now with delight. Little songs that my toddler made up in the bath have become inside jokes, and actually part of our family’s culture.

All that to say, you don’t know what will become important, poignant, or inspiring to you in the future. The more you document, the more opportunity you have to develop your own creativity culture.

Progress not Perfection.

This means that each moment invested in a creative journey has value because you are moving forward. Most of the time it’s not glamorous, but it is still worth recording. When we document, we can look back and see those little steps of progress that become our journey. Take photos and videos to remind yourself where you’ve been- the bumps and victories along the way. It’s amazing how quickly we can forget when we aren’t intentional about documenting. They may not mean much to anyone else, but you will look back with pride, chagrin, sentiment and countless other emotions.

A Digital Archive

We are living in an amazing point in history where digital cloud storage is cheap and plentiful. Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud, Facebook, Instagram, Evernote- these are just a sampling of the fantastic web services that can be used to archive your work and your story. So jump in- be intentional about documenting and uploading your progress for posterity. You will never regret doing this- your content will be waiting for you whenever you need to reflect or be inspired.

The View From The Top

This reflection will inspire you to continue on your journey, and will also be a treasured legacy as you look back on it in years to come. As you climb the mountain of each creative project, discipline or initiative, take the time to turn around and see how far you’ve actually come. If you intentionally reflect, going back through your journals, photos and videos, you’ll see that you are no longer where you were. You’re in new, uncharted territory.

Because creativity is a path and not a destination, taking time to enjoy the sights along the way only enhances the experience. This documented record allows you the opportunity to not only reflect personally, but to share and inspire others with all that you have endured and accomplished.

Jessica Beresh is a blogger and co-founder of MossyBrain. Along with her husband Ben, their 4 kids and their sweet puppy Charlie she resides in Broken Arrow OK. She is a 9 on the Enneagram, loves Chai (hot or iced) and also enjoys rainy days.

Connect with her on Facebook or jess@mossybrain.com.

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